Responsive Design mode in Safari

I just discovered the responsive design mode in Safari. This is nice. I think it’s a great tool, even when it’s limited to showing Apple devices.

The past weeks I have talked to multiple companies about how they approach responsive design. Mobile is over 50% for most companies, even approaching 70% numbers. Most websites start from a web view and adapt for mobile. Responsive Design is often, web design optimised for mobile.

This is wrong and we need better design tools to fix this. The Safari responsive design mode is a good start. While we design and build most websites behind a computer, most viewers aren’t viewing this from a computer.

Hiding a div is not how you scale down. We need to think the other way around. How to scale up and thinking about browser memory and mobile bandwith. Mobile first, really means mobile first. Start with the best mobile website you can think of and scale up.

The ad-blocker discussion on mobile browsers linked to this design approach. Loading too many ads and external scripts that make a scaled down page just too heavy to handle for most mobile browsers. Resulting in a bad experience, ads that are too big, content that is out of the first view, sites that crash or never load.

Safari Responsive Design Mode
Safari Responsive Design Mode

Behavior Design in Marketing

On October 6th we’re organising the 11th Behavior Design meetup together with Info.nl. The meetup is part of the Amsterdam eWeek. A week filled with events.

Behavior Design meetup at the Amsterdam eWeek 2015
Behavior Design Amsterdam at Amsterdam eWeek 2015

We have some great speakers. Most of I know personally and really admire. A great line-up.

  • Ingmar de Lange, pushing brands for years by focussing marketing on products and actions instead of words.
  • Ellen van Den Berg head UX of DDB & Tribal Worldwide, she will co-present with Apo J. Bordin.
  • Tom De Bruyne, founder of SUE Amsterdam. Tom is a long time advocate for Behavorial Design in marketing.

There are still a few seats left.

See you October 6th!

Behavior Design & Quantified Self meetup

Last week we organized the 10th edition of Behavior Design Amsterdam. For this event we joined forces with Quantified Self AmsterdamFreedomLab Campus hosted the meetup.

Behavior Design Amsterdam meetup and Quantified Self Amsterdam meetup
Behavior Design Amsterdam meetup and Quantified Self Amsterdam meetup
Behavior Design Amsterdam meetup and Quantified Self Amsterdam meetup
Behavior Design Amsterdam meetup and Quantified Self Amsterdam meetup

Kenkodo Metabolism based Body Tracker
One of the presentations was by Josephine Worseck about the Kenkodo Metabolism tracker.

The Kenkodo tracker is a personal metabolism tracker. Based on regular blood analysis and activity it aims to give you personal insights in what does and what doesn’t work for you.

This is also the most fundamental issue surrounding Quantified Self. Through all these trackers we are able to measure and gather an enormous amount of data. It’s really hard to turn this data into information.

I’ve been a Fitbit user for years. The device is great in telling me how many steps I’ve taken. It doesn’t tell me when to relax. At the end of a day I can be tired without having walked much. Other days I have been way over the 10.000 steps and still go for an evening run.

It’s just not as simple a taking one stream of data and acting upon it. Our internal sensors are still quite hard to beat. And for now this seems the biggest challenge surrounding the self tracking movement.

How to get from data collecting to valuable personal coaching.

Kenkodo Metabolism based Body Tracker
Kenkodo Metabolism based Body Tracker
Kenkodo Metabolism based Body Tracker
Kenkodo Metabolism based Body Tracker
Kenkodo Metabolism based Body Tracker
Kenkodo Metabolism based Body Tracker

“Bitcoin desperately needs design”

The IDEO futures podcast interviews Andreas Antonopoulos, author of Mastering Bitcoin.

In the interview he is talking about design methapors and the problems surrounding Bitcoin and blockchain mass-adoption right now.

It’s interesting too see that a lot of the things happening in this space are inevitable. At the same time there is still so much too gain. From a design perspective there is huge potential in this domain.

Certainly worth your time to listen if you’re into bitcoins and design.

Design in Tech report 2015 by John Maeda

Slide from Design In Tech Report 2015

As Design Partner at Venture Capital firm KPCB John Maeda released the Design in Tech Report 2015 earlier in March this year. It gives a great overview of what’s happening in the design field at this moment. Where design is getting more relevant to companies with the month.

We get more and faster technology, with more and different contact moments. This makes it more difficult to make easy to use products and services. Resulting in giving companies that are design driven an advantage.

I answered some questions in a survey in the approach to this report, you can find my name – really small – somewhere in slide 30 where designers where asked if coding skills matter for a designer. As an answer. I think they do. Coding skills do make you a better designer, it makes you understand how thinks work. You don’t have to be a top coder. It’s like being an architect understanding the impact of construction and materials make you a better designer.

Design in Tech Report
Design in Tech Report

Bye bye hypernarrative.com, hello wilbertbaan.nl Moving to a new domain

I decided to group everything I do on the web and move this to wilbertbaan.nl. This means closing an old portfolio and moving the hypernarrative.com blog over here.

I’ve been in doubt for a while why I should keep my blog up and running. Since I stopped frequently blogging a few years ago. Anyway, I decided it still makes sense to keep personal stuff on a private server, but it makes sense to keep it all in one place 😉

Welcome!

Wilbert

Why Obama on Buzzfeed Gives a Glimp on the Future of Distributed Media

Over the last decade media has been on the disruptive frontier of digital innovation, music, video and text. In this time we all got the means in hardware and software to broadcast whatever we want when we want. Our reading behavior has shifted from publications to personalization. How does this influence the media landscape?

The White House and atomized media
In this article Steven Levy interviews Dan Pfeiffer about the White House media strategy. The article really emphazises what’s going on in the media industry and how it’s changing.

“The penetration of the traditional press was becoming significantly diminished. We were having trouble getting the message we wanted to get out, but at the same time, because of the power of social media, the messages that other people wanted to get out about us were breaking through to people.”

Dan refers to it as “the age of atomized media”. When attention is atomized. Traditional mass media is at risk of being reduced to special-interest media.

Buzzfeed
This week Buzzfeed’s CEO Jonah Peretti explained at SXSW how to operate as a mass medium in this atomized media landscape. It’s all about understanding and collecting data, learning from readers behavior and making money in the proces.

Is traditional media moving towards a tipping point? Something shifts slowly for a long time, and then it topples without realizing what just happended. Companies like Buzzfeed are operating on a completely different level.

Digital native media
Journalism isn’t less relevant. Traditionally centralized outlets that guarantee reach and thus impact are losing ground much more quickly to digital native companies like Snapchat, YouTube, Buzzfeed and Vice then we probably realize.

Design for Atomized media
Personally I love this transformation. We see companies that know how to use data, engage an audience and are working to sustainable digital business models.

Since I’m a designer, I’m also looking at this from a design perspective. Software driven companies like Buzzfeed are adding a layer of complexity and designers (if I speak for myself) love more complexity. The complexer the information, the more there is a need for great design and to gain from great design.

As a designer you will probably focus more on ‘tiny interactions’ that generate relevant user-data and dashboards that allow you to turn all this data into information. It’s a shift from editorial design to the design of tools and software.

Software is eating the world. Just like any other company, being a stellar media company today, is being a great software company.


Disclaimer: for those of you who don’t know, I used to work on digital & innovation at the Dutch newspaper, de Volkskrant.