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I write about technology and design, mostly mobile and web. Sometimes I write about people and places I visit.

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Your websites suck

Many people from tech bemoaned the launch of Facebook’s Instant Articles, and fortification of walled gardens and native apps killing the web (again). Baldur Bjarnason published an excellent article with aggregated commentaries, but also adds his owns words which hit the bullseye.

Here’s an absolute fact that all of these reporters, columnists, and media pundits need to get into their heads:

The web doesn’t suck. Your websites suck.
All of your websites suck.

You destroy basic usability by hijacking the scrollbar. You take native functionality (scrolling, selection, links, loading) that is fast and efficient and you rewrite it with ‘cutting edge’ javascript toolkits and frameworks so that it is slow and buggy and broken. You balloon your websites with megabytes of cruft. You ignore best practices. You take something that works and is complementary to your business and turn it into a liability.

The whole article is well worth reading, so please do it. I’m also wondering if it might serve as a pivot in the way people think about web, for example like Ethan Marcotte’s article about responsive web design five years ago.


John Maeda talking on a stage.

Last week I attended MX conference about design organizations and leadership. It was a big opportunity for me because I mostly attended production oriented tech and design conferences before. The schedule was full of experienced and notable people and all videos are already available. I took some notes along the way and would like to share the gist of the event. Here are five common threads starting from very broad and narrowing it down. Read more

Sketching personas

An angry bird sketched on a paper.

Just doodling on the side while thinking about a design problem.

Take-aways from UX Munich

UX Munich hosted some really interesting talks this year, especially those more technical in nature. But two things really resonated with me. The first one is from Andy Budd:

Good designers want to be proved wrong, bad designers hope to be proved right.

My interpretation is that good designers and other problem solvers use mistakes as learning opportunities, while bad ones have fragile and defensive ego, and see compromise as a failure.

The second is from Erik Spiekermann. He was trying to explain how he hires people and that there are more important things than current skills.

You can learn to design. You can learn to code. But you can never unlearn to be an arsehole.

And don’t work with arseholes”, he said at the end. So there you have it, no more excuses.

These were the latest posts. If you want to read more, please explore the archive.

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