What’s Up / Random Questions

What’s Up / Random Questions

I’ve not been posting much, so here’s what’s going on!

What’s up with Work

  • I’m finishing up some 3D diagram work for a tradeshow booth for a very cool environmental company here in New England. It’s the kind of job I like: I’m meeting with people I like, directly asking questions, and crafting pieces for a physical installation. It’s just that the timeframe is a little cramped for me.

  • I also have committed to teaching a few days in October at the Center for Digital Imaging Arts in Waltham. I visited the center maybe six weeks ago and met with the director of the Graphic and Interactive Design program, Jeremy Osborn. I had once thought of making my own grad school because I missed aspects of it, but wanted to shape it toward pragmatic and principled design. After talking with Jeremy, I got the sense that this is very much the CDIA’s mission as well. The facility itself is very nice, nestled in a newly remodeled single building on Moody Street, which is where all the fun indian restaurants and artists are, apparently. Parking is cheap too, which is always a plus. I’ll be teaching “Web Graphics” for a few days, and am also putting together a curriculum to go along with it. This is the first time I’ve put anything like this together, and it’ll be the first time I’ve taught publicly, so it’s a brand new experience. You know what they say…if it doesn’t kill ya… :-)

  • Dad is also paying me a surprise visit! He has to take care of some financial stuff here in the US related to his pension, and it seemed like a good reason to take a trip so I could help with the various things he has to do. Dad is hard of hearing, so it’s helpful for me to sit in on the proceeds so I can take notes. On the more fun side, we’ve already had some interesting discussions about the nature of Christianity (Dad’s an ordained minister and former president of a theological seminary), his insights on organizational effectiveness and humanity, and some memories of Mom that I hadn’t heard before. He’ll be here for Halloween too, which should be fun.

What’s up with the Blog

There are a few posts I want to get to soon, related to the Random Questions I had asked for a few weeks ago. From Wade Winningham:

Although I was a Computer Science major in college, there were two non-math classes I took which have been an integral part of my process ever since. One was a Design class. I graduated from college back in the DOS days, but I felt even at that time for character-based screens, you still had to make those screens presentable. One of the best decisions I ever made. The other class was Non-verbal Communication. While this didn’t have an impact directly on my code, it definitely does when dealing with people. You don’t always think of it, but you can present yourself in a way that you appear confident and trustworthy. You can read the same in others and read their unspoken reactions, as well. Valuable in negotiations and in getting feedback. Sometimes I get so focused on some code, that I will literally code in my dreams and remember what I did. That was a long winded way of asking you what non-Design things you feel affect your own work. I know you have some video game experience. I’m wondering how that affects your day-to-day process and if you have any hobbies that may, as well.
And from Bill Busen:
Visual design. General principles and how your own style emphasizes certain of them. Which of them you are trying to grow in. Lots of us are non-visual, so we only know it when we see it, if then.
Also I need to post the excerpts from a very interesting email conversation with the president of Magnatag, Wally Krapf. Their PR agency found the post I had written on Magnatag’s neat products and let me ask some questions. I found the responses quite interesting; Krapf has been doing this for years, and his philosophy of giving customers what they need in the context of efficiency systems going way back to the 50s and 60s when he started out as a salesman in Rochester, NY. Very neat stories, and very inspiring.

Other Wrap-Ups

  • There’s a tentative date for Barcamp Manchester, which is being organized by the very capable Ian Muir. November 4th! Empowered geeks unite! Sign-up at the website.

  • “Ian” from Joe’s Goals just IM’d me to say that he’s added logging to his simple-and-effective AJAX to-do tracking system. I haven’t had a chance to check it out, but I like where he’s going with the system. He was also married last week, so congratulations Ian! :-)

  • I posted a few new pictures on Flickr, of some mooncakes that Dad brought from Taiwan. Oh, and some new cat pictures.


p>So that’s all the time I have to post…maybe more this weekend. Y’all have a great week!


  1. Alvin 18 years ago

    Congrats on the teaching post! I think it’s going to be a nice new experience :)


  2. Senia 18 years ago

    Cool about the Wally Krapf upcoming questions and inspiring stories.  And very cool about the upcoming random questions answered.  I’m liking this preview post to get a sense of what’s going to be happening on the blog.  Thanks!