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Field Notes Colors: “National Crop” Edition

The spring 2012 Field Notes release is so effortlessly charming that it feels something like Field Notes coming full circle. Draplin has always been fascinated by the working-man no-BS design of old farming equipment, manuals, and almanacs. Now Field Notes is paying a more direct homage to that influence.

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Josh Clark .vs. Jakob Nielsen on Mobile Usability

Kid gloves are off, and I’m with Clark:

For all of Jakob Nielsen’s many great contributions to web usability over the years, his advice for mobile is just 180-degrees backward. His latest guidelines perpetuate several stubborn mobile myths that have led too many to create ‘lite’ mobile experiences that patronise users, undermine business goals, and soak up design and tech resources.

There are no mobile browsers, just browsers. Handicapping your site on “mobile” is a good way to bug your users and make your site less useful to them.

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Kurt Vonnegut’s 8 Tips on How to Write a Great Story

Write to please just one person. If you open a window and make love to the world, so to speak, your story will get pneumonia.

I’m a complete sucker for Vonnegut.

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James Bridle’s Coverage of The New Aesthetic Panel at SXSW 2012

At SXSW this year, I asked four people to comment on the New Aesthetic, which if you don’t know is an investigation / project / tumblr looking at technologically-enabled novelty in the world.

Consider it a companion / primer to the Bruce Sterling essay linked here previously.

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Bruce Sterling’s Essay on the New Aesthetic

I’ve spent an embarrassingly large portion of this week parsing Bruce’s 5000-word ramblerant on The New Aesthetic. Consider it required reading for anyone who makes or designs.

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Beautiful web type

A collection / demo of the “best” typefaces from Google’s web font directory. Well-curated and paired nicely. This is a great resource.

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GuideGuide

“Photoshop grids that don’t suck so hard.”

Sounds about right.

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The Icon Handbook

Jon Hicks makes great icons, and I look forward to learning what he has to teach. The 323-page book ships January 30th, 2012 and there’s a PDF sample.

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FingerCursor

A transparent background image of the “finger” cursor for Mac and PC.

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A Brief Rant on the Future of Interaction Design

A pretty great rant by one of the designers of the iPad on the future of a profession that many of my friends put on their business cards.

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How to bring good design to a platform

Marco Arment is, once again, on point. One of the largest problems with Android is the same problem Windows has had since its launch: The lack of attention to detail, nuance, and usability focus in the built-in applications and OS make developers feel like they can be lazy.

Based on my experience with the Android market 90% of all Android apps would absolutely not make the App Store, much less sell many copies.

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Designer Notes on Risk Legacy

Rob Daviau, designer of the new board game Risk Legacy, talks about his process and reasoning behind the more progressive features of the game.

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Lost Type Co-op

Very nice typefaces with a pay-what-you-like profit model. The website is fun, too.

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The Art of Team Fortress 2

A short YouTube video series by Virtually Reality contributor Soul Grafitti, in three parts: Setting the Scene, Character Design, Narrative & Culture.

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The Four Icon Challenge

Kyle Tezak is making mini icon sets for famous films, with the constraint of only using 4 icons for each. I’m fond of the Life Aquatic challenge, myself.

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Jeffrey Zeldman on Style .vs. Design

This 2000 article is one of the most important articles the young me ever read, and it’s worth revisiting every so often.

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Cost and Royalty Free Science Illustration Vector Art

1500 vector symbols in 32 libraries, free for any use, from the Integration and Application Network of the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science.

The icons are of varying quality, but it’s certainly a useful round to have in the chamber. Via Zeldman.

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Scott Wilson’s iPod Nano Watch Kits Raise $350,000 on Kickstarter

Obviously crowd-sourced patronage will never work. The project still has 3 weeks lefts to go, too.

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Tony Wilson’s Headstone

A fitting tribute:

Factory Records founder Anthony H Wilson died in August 2007. Just over three years later, a memorial headstone designed collaboratively by Wilson’s long-term associates Peter Saville and Ben Kelly with Paul Barnes and Matt Robertson, was unveiled in The Southern Cemetery in Chorlton-Cum-Hardy, Manchester.

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Lukas Mathis Interviews Chris Clark

I don’t link to many interviews on ExFu but when Lukas is interested enough in someone’s work to talk to them I listen, and you should too.