Supporting Manton Reece's Micro.blog

I recently backed Manton Reece's project Micro.blog. This time of platform needs to be supported more than ever. In the era of fake news and content being infused in centralized social networks, self-hosted content seems lost these days. I would often spend hours reminiscing with friends about what it was like about having micro-communities where people would visit your website to read what you've been up to. Life-long relationships formed from these interactions I had almost two decades ago.

It would be foolish to expect we would all go back to the days where social media and social networking is not a part of the web, but we certainly can take some of the great elements of it and put focus back on it. I still use Twitter, and like from my website years ago, met some great friends and life-long relationships through it. However, Twitter has been a bit polarizing and overwhelming for me recently. I want to focus in and visit sites, take the time to read and go deep on the content...giving it the attention it deserves.

Certainly, micro.blog is not the first of its kind. You might remember app.net having a similar mission, which ultimately didn't make it. It's not just micro-blogging, but micro-communities. We yearn for those close relationships again. You see it with Slack communities forming and iMessage groups. As they say, when a new iMessage group forms, a squad gets its wings.

 

Thank you, Manton, and I am wishing you the best of luck. You can follow my Micro.blog or my self-hosted site at micro.davidhoang.com.

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/manton/indie-microblogging-owning-your-short-form-writing

Manton's words on why he created Micro.blog: http://help.micro.blog/2015/why-i-created-this/


I'll be speaking at SwiftConf

I'm excited to share that I'll be speaking at SwiftConf this September! This will be my first time in Germany and I'm so thrilled to visit. I will be speaking about infusing the collaboration between engineering and design. My hope is to work on a side demo project that will hopefully share some cool concepts.


HTC One M8 Campaign

Role: Lead UX Designer
Creative Director: Marie Thacker
Photography: Engle Photo
UX Researcher: Ken Ohnemus

The HTC One M8 was the flagship mobile device and our team work on the launch of the campaign. Though we partnered with third party agencies, the Global Digital Marketing team was the in-house resource to deliver.

The Narrative

 

We recruited models and worked with Tim Engle for the photoshoot. Before that, their personas were created to give us guidance throughout the creative process.

 

Storyboards by Suzanne Ryckman

Photo Shoot

Wireframe Concepts

Interace Concepts

User Research and Testing

Our team would conduct usability testing every week as we iterated on the designs to answer open questions we had during the week: What are the features that potential consumers cared about the most? How do they research what phone to get?

 


The vastness of curiosity

I have been thinking deeply about this quote from the author of one of my favorite books, The Little Prince.

"If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up people to collect wood and don’t assign them tasks and work, but rather teach them to long for the endless immensity of the sea."

— Antoine de Saint Exupéry

Though this also applies to my personal life, I often reflect on this in the work setting and with design teams. This quote always finds me looking back at Kimber Lockhart's post about fostering a sense of purpose. Everyone has a different drive and motivation, and when you can find people who are purpose-driven, there is an infinite amount of energy because it is their human need to explore and be curious.

If you can find people who are in love with the process and are curious, they will lead you all over the ends of the earth.

 


OK to disconnect: The death of my iPod classic after 14 years

It was Saturday night and I was at my San Francisco apartment listening to BT's new album "_" on my iPod classic. I was trying to get the mood right to explore some prototypes I have been wanting to finish up. Suddenly I heard the sound all-too-familiar with other devices. The hard drive was trying to spin up…quickly, and then fading away.

I knew what it this meant but was in denial. Suddenly, it locked up. I frantically plugged my iPod into the nearly-obselete 32-pin adapter and into my iMac. I tried restoring. iTunes couldn’t read it. I checked disk utility to give it another try…even tried to format it. Didn’t work. My iPod gave it’s last spin attempt…and failed.

I was devastated. It felt crazy to feel so hurt by the loss of an inanimate object. However, it hit me. My iPod represented more than what it physically was, but more than 14 years of my life. To put it in a bit of perspective, my iPod is the same age as my cat Wilson, both I received while in college.

I still had my papers and art projects from college on the hard drive. These iPods were ones that you could use as an external drive as well. So many memories of art history papers about Caravaggio sketches of explorations.

And of course, there was the music and podcasts. All the playlist I had on it was curated carefully by me. Looking at the playlists, I can remember the reason it was created, whether it was in honor of the death of a friend, parties, or especially created for

In an age of streaming, shuffle, remixing, reboots, adapters, and annual upgrades, the iPod classic represented intention, focus, and longetivy. It was just your hand on the wheel, turning, and exploring.

Now that they are discontinued, I'm not sure if I ever will own an iPod classic again, but I am so thankful for more than a decade of experience with something that was quite literally the soundtrack to my life.


Ask Me Anything: Why is the time set to 2:14 AM on all of your designs?

We couldn't afford to rent movies when I was a kid, so my mom would take my brother and I to the public library. Though there was a huge list of options for films, we would always pick the same one—Terminator 2: Judgment Day. In the film, the computer AI Skynet is the antagonist that becomes self-aware and begins targeting humans as a threat causing the nuclear nightmare, known as "Judgment Day". In the 1991 film prior to the new re-boots, Skynet became self-aware a 2:14 am Eastern Time.

In any static design I do, the time is set to that.

Have other questions? Ask Me Anything.


The best team white elephant party ever

As I was organizing my Vimeo page I stumbled upon this gem...our White Elephant Christmas party from 7 years ago when I worked at ExactTarget. It's amazing that these group of people have grown up to now have their own families, elevate in their career to be directors and beyond.