rules & unsolicited advice

To sit or not to sit?

Allan Chochinov, editor of Core77, drew my attention to a remarkably cheap – in fact, free – way to increase patient satisfaction in hospitals. According to researchers at the Mayo Clinic, patients perceive that health providers (their term) who sit during an evaluation “are their bedside for longer than those who stand – – for […]

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To my friends at Microsoft

Someone programmed Word to flash this pop-up at me Every…. Single…. Time…. that I press “Save” whilst typing. “You have 22 days remaining until the Microsoft Office Test Drive expires. To order your copy of Office 2004, click Buy Now”. This happens every 30 seconds or so. Now whether or not I have a license […]

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Brace! Brace! Have a nice day!

My lonely campaign against the concept and practice of “emotional design” is failing. I learned with horror this morning that an International Journal of Emotional Labour and Organisations has been launched, and that it is for people who study emotionology. A journal and an ‘ology in one day: The fight is lost. A history of […]

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Brain boxes

During my visit to the MIT campus a few weeks ago Doug Sery, my editor at MIT Press, pointed out two large and expensive-looking buildings that were being constructed to house neuroscientists. A generation ago, the glamour building on the block was MediaLab – so we should probably ask: What do these neuro guys do […]

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How can this many design events succeed?

I frequently warn of the dangers that lie ahead for the organisers of design conferences, trade fairs, festivals and biennials. A growing number of me-too events is competing for our attention, and there’s a real danger we’ll all switch off. Since I last wrote about the subject a month ago, plans have been announced for […]

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Self-serving, moi?

I know it’s the silly season for news, but a tech story on BBC News today wins my prize for the year’s most witless tech waffle. Headlined “UK ‘could become hi-tech titan’”, the story refers to a report (unnamed and unreferenced) by consulting firm Deloitte that urges “swift action” (by who it does not say) […]

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Too many events?

I learned recently that a new book is published every 30 seconds. I imagine at least that many new blogs are launched each day. Does the same rate of reproduction apply to conferences and events? I used to keep my own list of events until I discovered a bunch of databases each of which contains […]

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More for your book list

Zaid Hassan writes with the polite suggestion, concerning our list of recommended books (see button on the right) that “perhaps a couple of Indian/Sub-Continent authors wouldn’t go amiss?”. Mea culpa:my first list is indeed horribly occicentric. Here are Zaid’s recommendations: – Igniting Minds” by PJ Abdul Kalam (President of India). – The City of Djinns […]

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Design-recast: the world as spread-sheet

A lecture given to the Design Recast conference organised at the Jan Van Eyck Academy in Maastricht by Jouke Kleerebezem. Trying to get a grip on design is rather like trying to grab hold of a shoal of herring. Orca whales do this by blowing upside-down funnels of air bubbles from underneath the shoal – […]

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