I can forgive our answer machines if they sometimes get it wrong. It’s less easy to forgive the confidence with which the bad answer is presented, giving the impression that the answer is definitive. That’s a design problem.
Wednesday, March 15th, 2017
Monday, March 6th, 2017
Absolute gold dust from Mike!
I think that having regular 1:1s is really important, but I’m sure I’m not doing them as effectively as I could—the advice in here is going to be invaluable.
There are three types of employees in the world when it comes to disclosing issues:
- Those who will always tell you about problems.
- Those who will never tell you about problems.
- Those who will tell you about problems when asked in the right way.
I love my ones and am frustrated by my twos, but I feel like at least 9 out of 10 people are actually threes.
Sunday, March 5th, 2017
This is really good fun! And thanks to service workers, it works offline too.
The rounds are:
- Dead or Not Dead,
- Number 1 or Not Number 1, and
- Oscar or Not Oscar.
Monday, February 13th, 2017
In which I attempt to answer some questions raised in the reading of Resilient Web Design.
Wednesday, January 11th, 2017
A good range of answers for this year’s question, overlapping a bit with 2011’s What scientific concept would improve everybody’s cognitive toolkit?
Wednesday, July 20th, 2016
Shamefully, I haven’t been doing one-to-ones with my front-end dev colleagues at Clearleft, but I’m planning to change that. This short list of starter questions from Lara will prove very useful indeed.
Friday, April 29th, 2016
Eric asked me some questions and I was only too happy to give some answers.
Monday, February 29th, 2016
Ignacio asked me some questions. I was happy to answer them.
Monday, October 5th, 2015
Just when I think that I don’t get the point of Medium, along comes Dan to show me the light. This thought-provoking thinkpiece isn’t quite on the same level of his seminal groundbreaking kittens work, but I guarantee it will stay with you.
Monday, March 11th, 2013
I really, really enjoyed this chat with Conor, especially the quick-fire round.
Note: I’m happy to report that between doing the interview and its publication, I managed to get the redesign of The Session out the door.
Thursday, January 17th, 2013
A question of time
Some of the guys at work occasionally provide answers to .net magazine’s “big question” feature. When they told me about the latest question that landed in their inboxes, I felt I just had to stick my oar in and provide my answer.
I’m publishing my response here, so that if they decide not to publish it in the magazine or on the website (or if they edit it down), I’ve got a public record of my stance on this very important topic.
The question is:
If you could send a message back to younger designer or developer self, what would it say? What professional advice would you give a younger you?
This is my answer:
Rather than send a message back to my younger self, I would destroy the message-sending technology immediately. The potential for universe-ending paradoxes is too great.
I know that it would be tempting to give some sort of knowledge of the future to my younger self, but it would be the equivalent of attempting to kill Hitler—that never ends well.
Any knowledge I supplied to my past self would cause my past self to behave differently, thereby either:
- destroying the timeline that my present self inhabits (assuming a branching many-worlds multiverse) or
- altering my present self, possibly to the extent that the message-sending technology never gets invented. Instant paradox.
But to answer your question, if I could send a message back to a younger designer or developer self, the professional advice I would give would be:
When, at some point in the future, you come across the technology capable of sending a message like this back to your past self, destroy it immediately!
But I know that you will not heed this advice. If you did, you wouldn’t be reading this.
On the other hand, I have no memory of ever receiving this message, so perhaps you did the right thing after all.
Thursday, January 10th, 2013
Trent and I answered a few questions for the Responsive Design Weekly newsletter.
Tuesday, December 4th, 2012
Six impossible questions
What is the difference between right and wrong?
What is the difference between a cupcake and a muffin?
What is the difference between a website and a web app?
What is the difference between a startup and any other business?
What is The Cloud?
What is brunch?
Monday, November 19th, 2012
Wondering whether that network-enabled device of yours is worthy of being considered part of the “internet of things?” Just answer these few short questions.
Wednesday, September 5th, 2012
Not long now ‘till Brighton SF on Thursday evening with Brian Aldiss, Lauren Beukes, and Jeff Noon. I’ll be the host for the evening so I should make sure that I’ve got lots of incisive questions for the three authors…
What the hell am I thinking‽ I have no idea what I’m doing. Damn it, Jim, I’m a sci-fi fan, not an interviewer!
I could do with your help. If you have anything—anything at all—that you’d like to ask one or all of these luminaries, please share it with me. We’ll be taking questions from the floor on the night too, but I’d feel a lot better if I had a nice stack of good questions to get the ball rolling.
So please, leave a comment and let me know what I should be asking these three masters of sci-fi.
Tuesday, June 5th, 2012
Markov-generated Quora questions …far more entertaining than actual Quora questions.
Wednesday, May 2nd, 2012
Questions for Mobilism
I’m going to Amsterdam next week for the Mobilism conference. Bizarrely, there are still tickets available. I say “bizarrely” because it’s such an excellent event—it’s like the European equivalent of the Breaking Development conference.
Don’t worry; I won’t be giving a presentation. I’ll leave that to experts like Remy, Lyza, Brad, and Jake. But I will be getting up on the stage. I’m going to moderating not one, but two, panels. I think it’s going to be fun.
We’ll be reprising the Mobile Browser panel from last year. Once again, there will be representatives from Opera, RIM, and Nokia. This year Google is also joining the line-up. As usual, Apple will not be present.
The new addition to the schedule is a panel on device and network APIs. I will be playing the part of a curious but clueless web developer interested in such things …because, well, that’s what I am.
You have not been invited to give a speech. Before you stand up, boil your thoughts down to a single point. Then ask yourself if this point is something you want to assert or something you want to find out. There are exceptions, but if your point falls into the category of assertion, you should probably remain seated.
But I’m not planning to leave the questions entirely to the people in the room. Just as I did last year, I’d like to ask you to tell me what topics are burning in your mind when it comes to mobile browsers or device APIs.
Comments are open for one week. Let fly with your questions.
Tuesday, July 28th, 2009
A beautifully presented site wherein Ben and Frank endeavour to answer your design-related questions.
Thursday, April 30th, 2009
Imponderables from a galaxy far, far away...
Monday, March 3rd, 2008
Another "barnacle app" built on Twitter: answer a question, view the results. Cute.