Worth the videos at TED 2007, and the explanation here on YouTube from ArtFutura for how they walk can be viewed in this Physics Engine demo of a model of one walking over obstacles.
Sunday, January 27, 2008
Tuesday, January 22, 2008
SolidWorks' latest release featured some major changes to the UI, which caused a bit of a ruckus among the experienced users. Matt Lombard, author of the SolidWorks Bible, is one of the ruckusers. Along with posting pictures of me (hah), Matt also just posted a YouTube interview with one of the best guys at SolidWorks and one of my clients there, Jim Wilkinson. To see some inside scoop on how the company works, you can watch it on YouTube linked from Matt's blog.
A final note: It's a credit to SolidWorks that someone like Jim exists there and has authority. Not only is he a good manager, but he's universally well-respected AND well-liked by everyone who meets him, internally and externally; and he's active in the user forums answering customer questions on top of his ever-expanding day job. Jim saw a need for a usability team long before most CAD companies found out such a thing exists (for the rest of them, that was only 2.5 years ago). Kudos to SolidWorks for having such great employees and managers. It explains a lot about the product success.
Saturday, January 19, 2008
The great thing about lists like this, that make you really paranoid, is that you can decide how far you want to go down the risk-avoidance path, and not go that far. Or, maybe, go there if you're in a nasty-looking hotel.
Sunday, January 06, 2008
- Five excellent clients, and a couple of potentials I had to turn down because I was booked. Two web consumer startups, and one long-term established software company, whom I am still working with.
- Several opportunities to work on data mining: web log analysis, survey cluster analyses, and quantitative personas. Very interesting work! (I also took 2 classes from statistics.com to hone my skills.)
- A couple of web projects for which I provided the interaction design and project management actually launched in the same year, including the extremely successul NASA Tech Briefs Create the Future Design Contest site. (Winners will be announced this week!)
- Two publications by yours truly on the politics and skills of UI design: An article in interactions on the difficulties in practicing design today, and an essay in a new book, HCI Remixed: Reflections on Works that Have Influenced the HCI Community (MIT Press 2008). This book is hot off the press and a fascinating read.
- Incorporation for my consulting business, Ghostweather Research and Design, LLC. Followed by a crash course in accounting for small businesses. Who knew that credits were negative and debits were positive? And that Quickbooks is still a bit hard to use?
- I gave a handful of local talks at software companies, local design or usability meetings, etc, on design practices or online communities. Some of them are here on my essays page.
- Some technical fun: Opportunity to use Flash (so far just on small personal projects), Illustrator, PHP, mySQL, Excel with a database backend.
There are articles in this one on "Do It Yourself EVP," a fascinating bio piece on Russian psychic-hypnotist-mystic Wolf Grigorievich Messing, and the usual write-in articles from people who believe they've seen the strange and undead. There's even a sidebar on a dog who can predict who's going to die in nursing homes, like the cat Oscar profiled just about everywhere. (Note the difference in how the animals behave. Typical!)
But what made me LOL was the classifieds: Amid sections called "Magick," "Earth Mysteries," "Ghosts," "Occult," "Pyramids," "Voodoo," etc, they still manage to need a section called "Miscellaneous." Equally entertaining are the ads for books and services, sprinkled throughout.
I don't mean to mock too hard, though; I really did enjoy it, and considered getting myself and a relative subscriptions.