Clippings — week of 24 August 2015

Introducing Clippings. A log of reads that I’ve enjoyed and taken something from, presented at the end of each week.


The moral bucket list →
I attended the memorial service of a good friend and former colleague of mine who passed away last weekend. Needless to say, it was a week that made me question my own mortality. This was a thought-provoking and appropriate essay that made myself think about what kind of person I’m perceived to be and will be remembered for. I often steel myself to contain emotions, living in complete diplomacy and bland anonymity. I’m slowly learning to be more genuine and true to myself rather than constantly trying to avoid friction with diverging opinions.

Grit is for cowboys →
It’s easy to get trapped into blind perseverance without taking a holistic view on what you’re trying to accomplish or what effects it might have on you. I have twice burnt myself out, egging myself to do more and do better, without properly seeing the greater effect. Design and repetitive manual labour from a process point of view simply don’t fit together.

The illusion of time →
This article offers practical advice and good examples that demonstrate how we perceive waiting time on digital products is completely subjective. There are also explanations and ways to alleviate pain caused by longer periods of waiting, simply by making better deicisions in optimising for the specific waiting time. I thought that the article collated some of the scattered reference material I’d seen from different places really well.

Dear developer. Love, designer. →
As the title eludes, this was a great writeup about how developers can help the designer and enhance the overall solution. I thought that the article really captured my feelings that I’ve had but haven’t yet tried articulating. I found that developers may know of patterns that may suit the solution better, especially when dealing with native apps. Function-focused conversations and limitations of time prepares me to think about sensible iterations for the future too. It really is a privilege to be working in a cross-functional team.


Offline

I’m embarrassed to admit I’m making my way through the Harry Potter series at the moment. I started with The Philosopher’s Stone a few weeks back, and I’m now in the middle of the lsat book. I suppose I was recovering from a burnout, and it was something that I could read without having to think too much. My eyes were glazed for the majority of the books, but a scenario with the Weasley twins made me draw parallels with what I’d talked about last week. Fred and George had just been granted to use magic outside of school as they turned 17. From that moment, the twins relied on their wands completely, not even bothering to walk a few paces to collect something. Being the responsible mother, Molly tells Fred and George off for using magic for every little thing. It was easy to imagine technology as the magical component of the world we live in. Convenience doesn’t beat living slowly and savouring moments with our entire body. And at times, technology can be a very roundabout way of doing something simple, but we usually employ the means to save time. By cutting time though, I wonder, what else are we cutting out from ourselves?