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inspirations

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Examples of path dependence and where it might lead for smartphones

50 Things That Made The Modern Economy is a BBC World Service podcast.  In short snippets of 9 minutes, Tim Harford, the FT journalist, discusses innovations that have played a crucial role in shaping the world today.

The Haber-Bosch process, for example, responsible for thousands of deaths in the First World War, is fundamental to sustaining human life and population growth. It is the magic that results in fertilisers, without which there would be insufficient food for the world.

I…

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Reclaiming user personalisation of digital hardware

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Reclaiming user personalisation of digital hardware

There was a time when a radio was something you could build at a home and a television could be repaired by a local technician.  Consumer electronics have gradually become consumable in the literal sense of the word; we use them until they break and then we replace them.

With this trend has come a sense that, as users, we ‘get what we’re given’ with digital hardware. Physical customisation is at best the preserve of über geeks and, at worst, a dangerous recipe for breaking expensive ki…

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Defining user experience in the cold light of day

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Defining user experience in the cold light of day

I went into the kitchen to grab something from the fridge. It was late evening and I made my way through the darkness. Then I opened the fridge door and released the light.

I wondered, at that moment, when it was that the light got into the fridge. Which was the very first fridge to provide automatic illumination? So I did a little noodling on the internet, and came up with nothing, except that Frigidaire seemed to be a major innovator in household electrical goods throughout the 1950s…

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Serendipity and discovering supercreativity

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Serendipity and discovering supercreativity

Supercreativity is the latest PopTech ‘Edition’, comprising videos, a reading list and an ongoing discussion forum.  In their words:

Supercreativity provided an intimate setting to explore perspectives on creativity as technology tools help us shift from consumption to creation.

I particularly enjoyed the HBR article they link to: ‘Balancing “we” and “me”: the best collaborative spaces also support solitude‘ by Christine Congdon, Donna Flynn and Melanie Redman.  While I didn’t agree wit…

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New digital opportunities in the macro view

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New digital opportunities in the macro view

In tech, it is always tempting to focus on the micro, but we forget the influence of the macro at our peril.  For instance, while countless words continue to be written on reassuringly easy subjects like iOS versus Android, less time is dedicated to understanding which innovations have the potential to alter long-term behaviour and categories of spending.

This led me to choose the chart above for my Friday inspiration, showing how Americans have been spending their money for the last 75 ye…

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4 UX inspirations and our process for discovering them

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4 UX inspirations and our process for discovering them

What do ZTE, fabric, network performance and Apple’s 3rd party software integrations have in common?

These are just a few of the subjects we’ve been exploring as part of an internal MEX project called ‘Friday inspirations’, initiated by Alex Guest in May 2016.

The project developed from our move to Basecamp for collaboration between MEX team members. Basecamp 3 includes a feature called ‘Check-ins’: recurring questions sent out automatically at a particular time. In this case, it wa…

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Designing mobile devices at the intersection of creativity & consumption

The stories behind why novel product categories are introduced are often more important than the first product in the new line-up.  In the 20 years I’ve been writing about technology, I’ve seen plenty of good new products arrive, only to disappear – unsupported – after just 1 or 2 release cycles.  Nokia’s Lumia 2520 and Windows RT, anyone?

Reading between the lines of Lenovo’s September 2016 Yoga Book launch, however, there is an i…

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Design Talk 19. The Friday inspirations project

In this episode we share 6 digital design inspirations, from a sci-fi film script written by artificial intelligence to a fashion collection influenced by sound waves. Prompted by a move to Basecamp for MEX collaboration, podcast co-host Alex Guest introduced ‘Friday inspirations’, a recurring task for each member of the team to share a weekly ‘find’ with colleagues. Alex and co-host Marek Pawlowski take turns explaining why they picked each inspiration and how it relates to digital experienc…

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