The current fierce competition in the mobile device market has made it a pretty exciting time to be a mindless consumer drone. As designers and manufacturers race to ape one another’s latest features, their users tend to benefit, regardless of the platform they’re tied to. But in the past few years, Apple’s innovation has seemingly slowed down. Being an Android user, it’s bittersweet for me. It’s always fun to gloat when the country’s most valuable company borrows a feature you’ve been using for years, but I still hold out hope for another quantum leap that will bring the whole industry forward.
That’s why I was excited about the 3D Touch feature on the new iPhones. You can tap the screen with more or less force than usual to take different actions. It’s not just technically impressive – it could enable an entirely new set of interactions with our devices. It could even be a big step toward unlocking the full potential of digital interactions hinted at in Bret Victor’s great rant on interaction design. I was really excited to try it out (and even more excited for it to inevitably trickle down to Android). But after seeing it in use, and in my short experience with it, well, it’s not really doing it for me. more
I was just starting to take Google Glass seriously back in March when Google released their video announcing Android Wear. Suddenly notifications popping directly into my face didn’t seem so appealing – the wrist was a much more natural and, in hindsight, obvious place for them. So as soon as the Moto 360 became available for preorder, I jumped at the chance to own one. more
This is a short story I wrote about two years ago, decided to revise before publishing, and then never did. I had recently come across an emergent work of art that affected me deeply. The story is an attempt to provide that work with a satisfying etiology.
The Pharaoh gazed out from the palace doors. Already, beyond the swaying palms and flocks of wading ibis, he could see the sacred structure rising. It had been but a few weeks since he had ordered its construction, and he knew that it would be many more years before it was complete. But as he recalled some of the names of the pyramid designers, he smiled. His architects and engineers had earned their wisdom through age, and few would live to see their designs realized. But the Pharaoh, still so young, had time. Soon, he would have all the time in the world. more
When I set up this blog, I didn’t think too hard about what I could write about. “I’m a pretty interesting guy,” I told myself, “and a decent writer to boot. I’ll just write about the stuff I like to do.” I suppose my life isn’t the thrill ride I imagined it to be: the last substantial post I wrote was almost two and a half years ago. In that time, this website’s layout has gone through two major redesigns. Apparently, I enjoy the design process; I might as well write about that. more
Last Tuesday, a friend of mine snagged tickets to a pre-screening of the new film Tron: Legacy. I’ll say this: even though I’m a fan of the first Tron, my expectations were low. But, as it turned out, I won a free Snuggie.
Oh, and the movie was okay too. I wrote a review of the movie for EarnThis, a pop culture blog run by a good friend of mine. Go take a look!
Tron: Legacy (2010): The Game Has Changed, Like, A Lot
So I went ahead and applied the theme I’ve been working on to the WordPress installation running the website. I’m pretty proud of it – it works great in Chrome, Firefox and even modern versions of Internet Explorer, which has traditionally been the last bastion of standards noncompliance. It also looks better and was easier to code than the ill-advised “make everything enormous” theme that preceded it – not that I ever got anywhere with that layout. Read on for more information and a list of what’s still to come!
Don’t worry, I haven’t forgotten about you – you, my doting audience of prospective employers and creepers who Google me, wayward clickers from The Cavalier Daily Online Edition, and e-mail-harvesting spam bots. Excitement is on the way.
And here’s proof.
Ever since I first discovered the Philly Taco – a cheesesteak wrapped in pizza – in an article about “The Great Philly Cheesesteak Book,” I knew I had to have one. I’ve never been one to shy away from a challenge, especially those of the gastronomical variety, and the idea of combining two of street food’s greatest hits had me positively giddy with excitement. I was pumped, amped, jacked and stoked. For weeks, I dreamed of them, and I knew I had to make it happen.
But there was one problem. Philly Tacos (obviously) live in Philadelphia. I do not.
The Sandwich Party has become a semi-regular occurrence at my place. Last week, we invented the Mr. Manager, a sandwich cobbled together from the cheapest of the cheap foods at Kroger. Microwaveable bacon, barbecue and fried chicken came back from the brink of expiry to join forces with cheese and a fried egg on leftover sesame-seed buns. Then there was beer, “Da Ali G Show” and a late-night trip to IHOP.
What makes a perfect breakfast sandwich? The question is huge. But it’s important. What separates the history-making breakfast sandwiches from the flops?