A large metropolitan underground train network might as well be a teleportation device: People don’t care how it gets them from A to B, just that it does. In London, Paris and Moscow, the map of the metro does not show surface geography, because there is not much empty space on the sheet.
Designing a city’s metro map is quite a challenging task, even when there is just one line. Last year, my colleague Pasha Omelekhin and I were thrilled to work on the redesign of the metro map for Ekaterinburg, Russia. We had fun (he designed, I directed). In this article, we’ll cover our design process. It’s going to be detailed, so, depending on your interests, this might be very boring or very exciting. Still, we’ve left out so much. We hope this helps in case you have to work on a similar project.
Brainstorming is notorious for being unstructured and often unactionable. People get in a room with some Post-its and whiteboards and expect the great ideas to happen. The problem is, even if there are great ideas in the room, there is often no clear-cut way to decide on what ideas to take action on.
About a year ago, I and my colleague Michael (founding partner at AJ&Smart) were sitting in a masterclass run by the fantastic Adrian Howard on the subject of feature prioritization in agile development. More specifically, we were asking how we could decide which feature comes next and when it should be released.
“Be agile; release early; release often.” We know the drill. But is it strategically wise to keep rolling out features often? Especially once a product you’re building reaches a certain size, you probably don’t want to risk the integrity of your application with every new minor release.
The worst thing that can happen to your product is that loyal users, customers who have been using that one little feature consistently over the years, suddenly aren’t able to use it in the same convenient way. The change might empower users more, but the experience becomes less straightforward.
There are weeks where I don’t find articles for the “Going Beyond” section of the Web Development Reading List at all. And then there are weeks like this one, where two brilliant pieces show up that reveal so much about how we live together with new technology and how this shapes our society.
Along with a bunch of good tech articles, a great way to leave you for the next two weeks. Please note that I’ll be away on vacation next week, so there won’t be a summary next Friday.
Are you passionate about something? Do you have a secret project? Not something that will change the world (though who knows?), but will definitely change you? Do you have a friend who complements your skills? Has anyone recently asked you for help with their project? Do you just have a digital dream, or is there also a plan to make it come true?
Every professional has something in common. It’s called the comfort zone. The first sign you're in it is when you see no challenge on the horizon. You know pretty much everything you need to perform well, and if anything unfamiliar comes your way it can be solved fairly quickly. It can take a while to realize you've stopped moving, and working on freelance projects seems like the only way to keep your brain busy.
Some folks love it, some hate it. Today's icon set, designed by Manuela Langella, is dedicated to both lovers and haters of... football! That's right, the 2016 UEFA European Championship starts tomorrow. Clink! Clink! Let the games begin!
You may modify the size, color or shape of the icons. No attribution is required, though reselling bundles or individual pictograms isn't cool. Please note that this icon set is available under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license. We'd kindly like to ask you to provide credits to the creator and link to this article if you would like to spread the word about the freebie.
Petrograd, Russia, 1920. Deep in his scientific laboratory, a young Léon Theremin accidentally notices that the sound coming from one of his high-frequency oscillators changes pitch when he moves his hand. Popular culture is changed forever. The theremin’s unique sound proves perfect for sci-fi soundtracks and Good Vibrations by the Beach Boys. The world is a better place.
For the better part of a century, musicians have been waiting for a similar breakthrough technology to again change the way we create music. I’m delighted to announce it has already arrived. It’s called the Web Audio API.
There’s no doubt that simple design is hard, since it requires much more thought and inspiration. It’s about understanding exactly what your users need. Colors play a major role, and today I’d like to show you a couple of illustrations that may motivate you to try out some new color combinations and techniques.
Take a look at the following photographs, posters and book covers that have been created with some really inspiring shades and color palettes, and some even show how to cleverly use negative space. From 3D illustrations to artwork created with ink and watercolors, I’m sure there’s something that’ll spark your inspiration. Be warned though, some of them may even give you wanderlust from just looking at them.
We have a lot of passwords to remember, and it’s becoming a problem. Authentication is clearly important, but there are many ways to reliably authenticate users – not just passwords. Passwords are written off as inconvenient and unavoidable, but even if true a few years ago, that’s not true today. Due to a combination of sensors, encryption and seasoned technology users, authentication is taking on new (and exciting) forms.
Most other interaction patterns have been updated over time, but no one wants to mess with password authentication. It’s too serious. Or there’s too much liability. You know, like if you don’t clear the password input after someone types the wrong password, their credit card information is at risk.