The Golden Ratio is mathematically elegant, which is why people like it. It can also be found in nature, which is why people give it credence. But neither of these things means that people prefer this proportion in designed objects or the built environment.
If you want to access people on a visceral level by using the Golden Rectangle as your template for design, then good luck. Fact of the matter is no scientific or neurophysiological data supports the idea that the Golden Ratio is pleasant to the human eye. And there is zero evidence that the brain responds positively (or at all) when presented with it. No instinctual draw, no magic power and no supernatural or psychological force is at play when this proportion is used as the basis for a design.
Earlier this year we were fortunate to have entrepreneur, blogger and product strategist Mike Mace drop by and host a brown-bag strategy discussion with some frogs. One of the topics we discussed was whether smart phones have changed the way we think about buying phones.
Most frogs and Mike were in agreement that we bought our first iPhones for its shiny look and joy of the beautiful touchscreen. However, there was good debate as to whether that still holds true -- or whether application ecosystems and services lock in second and third generation buyers, making them less likely to switch. Put another way, when you pick Apple/iOS or Google/Android, are you likely to remain a happy prisoner to your ecosystem or are you just as likely to switch when the new shiny device comes along?
On a steamy August day in New York, a group of 19 kids, aged 8-12 years old, are excitedly talking with their parents, their summer arts camp teachers, and each other about their latest favorite video games. In a makeshift “arcade” at the Children’s Museum of Art (CMA) in Manhattan, each child is eager to demonstrate the games—with titles such as “Three Rooms of Doom” and “Fall of the Parasites.” It’s clear from their body language and bubbling voices that they can’t wait to share the details of how to play them. One enthusiastically describes a digital image of a black button, which propels a player into a time warp; another is animatedly talking about a house built of mazes and how to navigate through it effectively. The biggest reason these kids love these games? They designed them.
frog’s Portfolio Slam is an open call for design talent - from visual to interactive, intern to director, artist to geek. Our European creative leadership will be at Museum Brandhorst, ready to see your skills, your secret passions, your knack for detail and your vision for the future. Come show us what you’ve got! Here’s the when & where: Date: September, 17, 2012 from 4 to 8pm Location: Museum Brandhorst Theresienstraße 35a, 80333 München, please see www.frogdesign.com/portfolioslam for more detailed information.
I encountered a nice touch on a business-trip stay at the URBN Hotel Shanghai, where on arrival, the receptionist declined to take my credit card for a deposit. In doing so, she was essentially saying, "Your credit is good." I’m an occasional guest there, and frog’s Shanghai studio sends a fair number of folks to stay there, too--but the familiarity and recognition was still a momentary, pleasant surprise.
Recognizing the customer with a "Welcome back Ms. --" is one of the basics of service design; it acknowledges who we are and reinforces our "right" to be in that (private) space. In the context of an upscale environment, it gently massages the ego. The check-in process for hotels is fairly formulaic: You show your passport and credit card, the first of which is legally required, at least in China; the other is dependent on the company should it turn out your credit is not good. Waiving the need for a credit card is a small step. After all, if an establishment immediately recognizes you when you enter, it should have your (most likely valid) credit card on file.
Urban Indian market streets are a visual riot. There are so many layers, languages and signs. Every surface is screaming for prominence to advertise a local mom and pop shop, a western brand retailer, a medical specialist or a spiritual service. Amongst the mayhem are carefully crafted, hand-painted sign boards of all sizes. Each stretch of street has its own sign painter who defines the visual character of the block with his particular typography and illustration experiments.
“All man’s miseries derive from not being able to sit in a quiet room alone,” the 17th century philosopher Pascal famously said. Four centuries later, however, research asserts a direct correlation between openness and happiness. It turns out humans are social animals, after all. “Openness is the freedom to be one’s self,” one self-help blog states, representative of common belief. I concur. In my life, openness has been a prerequisite for almost anything good happening to me – from moving to the U.S. to meeting my wife to, most recently and fittingly, speaking at a TED conference focused on the theme of “Radical Openness.”
The Internet of Things (or IoT) is finally going mainstream. Not only do I read about it frequently online, but I’m now talking about it with clients at frog. Unfortunately, as it has become popular, it has also grown to the point where it can span everything from home Wi-Fi networks to smart cities. Much like the story of the three blind men describing an elephant, the essence of IoT depends on your point of view.
What we need is a simple breakdown, both physically and functionally, so we can discuss the many facets and challenges ahead. The simplest is to start by device category as there is a huge range of devices that can be thought of as being part of the Internet of Things. Fortunately, there are really only three broad physical categories: Bears, Bats, and Bees.
The Indian automobile industry is set to become the sixth largest passenger vehicle producer in the world, growing 16-18 percent to sell around three million units in the course of 2011-12. The passenger vehicles sales trend has shown an exponential growth in past few years and it is expected to grow further in coming years.