I write about technology and design, mostly mobile and web.
Sometimes I write about people and places I visit.
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March 12 was a very sad day. Sir Terry finally met one of
his Discworld characters, the one from the artwork.
Just doodling on the side while thinking about a design problem.
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.
Since I’m not a beer drinker and it’s the wrong time of the
year for Oktoberfest anyway, I had to find something else to
explore on this visit. BMW, headquartered in Munich, is
preparing itself for the 100th birthday next year, so it
seemed like a good opportunity to spend one morning exploring
its history and engineering accomplishments.
Elon Musk—CEO of SpaceX and Tesla—was asked on a recent Ask
Me Anything on Reddit how he manages to learn so quickly,
especially since he is innovating in different industries and
is successful in all of them. He replies:
I do kinda feel like my head is full! My context
switching penalty is high and my process isolation is not
what it used to be.
Frankly, though, I think most people can learn a lot
more than they think they can. They sell themselves short
One bit of advice: it is important to view knowledge as
sort of a semantic tree—make sure you understand the
fundamental principles, ie. the trunk and big branches,
before you get into the leaves/details or there is nothing
for them to hang on to.
Let’s repeat this:
- You can do a lot more than you think you can.
- You need a good foundation in the area you’re trying to
master. I’ve already touched upon the topic last year.
The whole AMA is also interesting to read if you have time.
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