Education is Key

With web design so new there is a lot of talk about people coming to it as a second career. Many with out any design training at all. This of course has advantages and disadvantages, letting you come at web design with a fresh perspective but lacking the technical knowledge to back it up (though Dan Seems to do okay). Others, like Patrick and myself, are young, out of design school, and have wanted to work in the web as a first career choice.

Recently at SXSW Mark Bolton and others had a panel about design and art direction on the web and how it is really lacking. In my mind this has to be partially be because of the lack of people who understand design at a very high level.

It’s my hope that in the future, as the web matures, that more focus will be put on higher education and deep understanding of design principals. Education that doesn’t stop at a BFA but continues to a MFA.

Ricardo Miranda has a great introductory post up about how to start thinking if an MFA is a good idea for you. If you’re in design and never got a degree in it getting an MFA might be a good way solidify your foundation in design. And if you’re like me and already have a BFA an MFA might be a great way to make those formal skills razor sharp.

I still hope to make it to an MFA one day and every good guide and how to I can find will only make my decision that much more informed.

mfa, gradschool, sxsw2006, ricardomiranda

The Future

"I'm counting on medical science to cure everything in another ten years so that as I grow older all I have to worry about is which dialect of Chinese I need to learn in order to shop for groceries, pay bills, and play World of Warcraft." - Greg Storey

That’s such an awesome quote from Greg that it needed repeating. I have often wondered the same thing. Though sometimes instead of Chinese I think of Portuguese since there is a huge tech movement in Brazil to rival America.

I wonder if once people can live an extremely long and healthy life if they will be less likely to throw it away in a war. I can keep hoping.

Google Calendar!!

Google calendar is awesome. I’d review it but you can read a review over at Techcrunch.

Google Canendar message in the top left corner

My quick notes are that I love the tiny blue menu in the top left. I like the idea of easily switching between the different google services. If only it was on the other google pages. It’s much more useful then the current account info on the top right corner.

So far there is no Gmail integration but I’m sure they want to get the bugs out of it and get it working before they grind both services to a halt.

There also doesn’t seem to be a way to group edit a calendar. Hopefully this does become the feature they never implement. The ability to create groups in Gmail took over a year.

Update: They added the blue menu to gmail! But doh! They made the links open in a new window! I wanted to SWITCH between them not open more windows. At the very least I’d like to be able to edit that in the settings.

google, googlecalendar, gmail, calendar

Ptolemy’s Gate – The Bartimaeus Trilogy

Finished the last book of the Bartimaeus Trilogy today. I’m a horrible book reviewer but I liked them a lot. The last one really seemed to stick out as exceptionally good. The last page really seemed to cut to black a bit quicker then you might like. Fantasy books tend to have epilogues and long drawn out endings but this one just stopped. It was sad but nice for a change.

Now that I’ve read all three I felt safe to roam the web looking for any additional info that might be out in the wild. Wikipedia has a nice collection of articles about the series, books, and characters. In general the book has enough mythos to build on and so a community coming together to put this together isn’t that surprising.

Finally I made it over to the official web site. My goodness that is the ugliest web site that I’ve seen that wasn’t made for a high school. If I was the book publisher I would be embarrassed to have a website so incredibly horrible. It’s not even good for an old website, like early 90s, and these are very recent books abd YA books at that! And last I heard young adults are using the internet.

book, bartimaeustrilogy, jonathanstroud