August 2009

Movie Review: Coraline

I recently watched Coraline with the kids.  The movie was pretty clever and well done, but I found it highly derivative.  Here is what it made me think: BeetleJuice (1988) –  My goodness, the artwork was so reminiscent the genius BeetleJuice, but more importantly, I found a strong similarity to the main characters (Lydia/Coraline) and to her relationship with her parents, especially her mother. Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer (1964) – The noses...

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The UX of Mission/Vision Resolutions

I was listening to Barney Frank today on NPR.  He said, regarding the healthcare debate, that republicans and democrats are basically on the same page on the big picture.  They both believed there is a real issue that needs serious attention.  However, he described that when you went into the details, that ideology created huge riffs between the different points of view. They were on the same page in the...

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The UX of facing UX alternatives

This happens all the time.  You have a design and it could go in several directions.  All directions have pros and cons.  What do you do? My technique is to mockup (quickly) as many of the alternatives as possible.  Give them all a chance to survive the bright light of day.  You will find (quickly) that some alternatives just wilt and die as soon as you mock them up.  They...

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Celebrating Stealth – Ninja Parade

I love well done satire.

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Half-Cash for Clunkers

The US Government started this program called “Cash for Clunkers“.  It gives $4000 to anyone who is trading in an old piece of crap for a new shiny car.  The goal is to increase the overall gas efficiency as well as spur the automotive industry.  They allocated $2 billion dollars.  The money ran out in a few weeks, so they allocated a few more billion.  Now it’s gone. Here is...

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User Research

What is the best way to gather user research? I believe Dian Fossey is a great role model for how to achieve great results and learn about your users lives. Dian didn’t ask the gorillas “So, tell me what kind of personality you have?”  Obviously, the gorillas would not have intelligent things to say to Dian.  Rather, she observed these majestic beasts in their natural habitat.  She didn’t put them...

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Pandora for Unsigned Bands

I saw this fun contest on Twitter called PerfectBusiness.  The rules were simple:  Boil down a great business idea into a single tweet.  Now here is a contest that I could do well with.  Here was my idea tweet: @PerfectBusiness #micropitch : Pandora for unsigned bands. Seed real artists, listen to unsigned similar artists. Focused on discovery. They re-tweeted and I replied: (Them) RT @glenlipka: @PerfectBusiness #micropitch: Pandora for unsigned...

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GMail is freaking me out

I need your help.  It will just take a second. Problem:  I think people are sending me mail which is not arriving at GMail.  It’s not in the spam folder either. Could you help me? Send me a mail to glen {at} kokopop.com.  No content needed.  Subject: can be any word you choose. Post a comment on this page with the subject word you chose. I will match your email...

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Phrasing in Health Care

What you call things is incredibly important.  The words you choose carry baggage and implications that people will adopt.  The words help people remember and frame an idea.  Take for example the current Healthcare debate in the U.S.  There is so much complexity and so much riding on one single monolithic bill.  Everyone assumes that this is one-shot deal.  We either get this right or it’s another decade before we...

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The UX of Proverbs

I have been reading this great book called Made to Stick. (Great so far)  In it, they talk about Proverbs.  Proverbs are short phrase-like ideas that encode a much deeper meaning into them.  They are much easier to remember because of the encoding.  Examples: A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush The bigger they are the harder they fall This too shall pass (Katie’s favorite) When...

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