there is definitely cause in the design of systems, to not confuse users with personalization. it’s the same question we face with raising children: how much choice is good?
where is that line between freedom of choice and comfortable boundaries?
so in the computer world, we had myspace engineered with multiple customization capabilities for user pages. then comes Facebook, with almost none, and the people flock to it. granted, a different sort of people. the kind that see their time differently, but also who feel more comfortable with all UI’s appearing the same.
the market for that is astounding. just look at Apple, who went with the policy, “do not confuse users with choices.”
I remember looking at a newer engine in a car, with a dedicated, mechanically-minded male friend. he said, “look at this! they make it so you can’t even get to the engine! and use off-size bolts!” so this phenom has been around before computers. don’t confuse people with choices. offer cars in three standard colors.
the 60’s and 70’s saw more custom paint jobs. but the more that go with the standardized design, the more that fall into that popularity or groove. let the maker decide for you, it’s too much pressure. and then the reinforcement happens, where the design factor works as a natural advertisement for the product.
when I have a customization going on, it changes the look of a tablet or phone screen, and no one else is going to be able to buy the same tablet and automatically get that same “look.” I outsourced it to a launcher app, and to an icon designer, and to a wallpaper designer.
so the offshoot of customization, will always be more jobs.
always. the custom car painting trends, created business. and specifically, business for artists.
therefore, trends to standardize design, create less work for artists. and when computer system designers standardize design, they create no work for small artists. only for big ones that do the one design.
what happens with this, then, is that the pool of available and experienced artists, shrinks. less artists can begin at the bottom, and so less variety goes to the top. ideas stagnate, and you get bumper stickers instead of paint jobs. you get trends in stickers. ferocious competition, because start up artists have been denied access to greater design. and the standards become so plain, that we reach the reticence to stand out in a crowd.
of you want to go farther into the philosophy and psychology, it creates the perfect ground and bigotry fear of anything and anyone that does not appear identical to the status quo. entire chain of events, there.
group thinking, versus individual expression. don’t confuse me with the choices.
I don’t want choices. I don’t want college, and careers. I want a coal mining job like my pop. and that’s that. don’t give me any kind of different looking iphone, mine needs to look exactly like the one I envy, the jones next door. so IF you produce something different, make the difference a more expensive model, so that I can brag about that one. (then they worked the business model to avoid price correction by supply and demand, but we’ll not get into that.)
so in many demonstrative ways, the trends of mass production, and more importantly, the trends for mass design…are the enemy of the artist. actually kill art, not only in the limitation of production based on design standards and trends, but by eliminating the lower class, upstart model of artist.
and without those upstarts, the designs and designers at the top have no new blood. no tried and tested blood. only artists that can hit the common denominator square in the middle. or deviate only enough to create the next trend.
don’t confuse me with the choices. serve hamburgers at your restaurant. I don’t want hamburgers and tacos. and those that stand for business models of choice, are continually beat by those who do not. in and out burgers flourished, because they served one type of burger.
don’t confuse me with choices. I want the same thing my neighbor has. and in a world of marginalizing the artist, jealousy grows to unbelievable amounts. more and more businesses not only gear to creating objects of similarity, but business for making human bodies identically thin, identically fit, also come into play. and all they have to do, is make the standard slightly out of reach.
the carrot on a stick. how often has the populous been shown the metaphor, and still …STILL fall for the plays? it creates justification for incorrect leadership.
and if you are getting a business off the ground, is the smart way to encourage artists and further businesses that branch off of your own? or is it to contain those design elements as a brand, and recognizable point of envy. do you feed your business on the probability of greed and envy, or do you expand the artist community and the very nature of choice.
if the populous is already greedy and envious in their consumerism, you go off of the greed.
don’t confuse me with choices. don’t make me think, don’t require that I have to determine if news is fact or fiction.
it has all lead here. where we stand today.
therefore I propose the answer, is what I have supported all along. the personalization of a computer system, the personalization of LIFE. the expansion of choices, and with those choices, less fear of making a wrong choice. the deliberation that settles on what defines the self in all of its beauty and originality.
trends in architecture, that actually determine how communities interact with each other. a garage door opener…how much did that stop neighbors from even seeing each other? the back yards with high fences…it’s all a pattern of isolation, WHILE limiting individuality within common, and often directed, choices.
I support products that support the range of lower artistry. that encourage business, a pool of artists that ranges wide, rather than narrows.
the thing about choices, is the more you have, then the more adaptable you become. the more you realize that the world does not end with a poor choice, then you can make choices faster and with less life and death for something that is far from life and death. and the world does not hinge, then, on what brand of margarine you buy, as you stand in front of a case while reading all the labels.
don’t confuse me with choices. in the area of grocery stores, the expansion of choice is played as a way to keep a customer in the store longer. and who is drawn to that? those starving for choice. food, and differing food becomes a whole thing. the longer any customer is in a store, the more they will buy. it’s simple business strategy.
and the more fat Americans become, the more they play into industries promising thin. and that business gets its boost.
so all of these patterns feed into one another. but it is a tightening spiral. one where the human spirit, especially the spirit of the artist, is slowly squeezed and obliterated. it started, with a war on artistry. with a need for likeness developed and fostered, where the safe place to be was looking similar, acting similar, and being the same.
there is no denying that the boost to business has been tremendous. but this path, or direction, is a tightening spiral. it has a breaking point. and instead of resetting, the breaking point is made of putty, an expanding sack of stagnation, and deflation, of human spirit.
the thing we generalize as HOPE.
I suggest that, humbly, that we move into the business future, by expanding choices. by inspiring the pool of small artistry to grow. by not depending on likenesses to increase envy and increase revenue only to a few. but instead, look at choice and individuality as the springboard to invention that it is paramount to usa ideals.
you can talk all day about helping the little guy, but when your business models seek to lower opportunity for the little artist, we are looking at invention that has lost its charms. and I suppose, one of the worst patterns to develop from this course, are children who are committing suicide. not teenagers…children.
that seems like a large leap, but when you run out of choices, the last definitive choice is death. so let’s not explore this direction further, let’s expand choice and personalization in daily lives. within products and computer systems. within homes and careers, within all facets of life that celebrate differences.
you want to know why Asian trends appear so strange to the west? because they are not your trends. and the similarity to be found, is if none are trends. we must get off this merry go round, and expand the world of art. expand the business of art. desire originality.
don’t confuse me with choices. the wrong thing is the confusion, not the choices. if we are exposed to choices, if we become experienced with choices…the confusing part goes away. it’s a win /win for society. because then the artist is needed, rather than just a consumer for the mental health industry. that last part is tongue in cheek. but not really…
your coloring fad started in the mental hospital. nurses Xeroxing off coloring books to have patients sit and color.
what does it mean? it means that ways of keeping the current system going are being exploited, rather than changing the direction. the direction where you are not coloring in a book. you are coloring your world…with choices.
the direction where artists have a place in society, that allows them to be the starving artist. because that is better than no place at all.
I watch the trends. you know life is getting pretty strained, when the selection for typeset…..omg! the design of letters, what should be a simple thing….has hundreds and hundreds, thousands! of lettering. to the point where people not in the business, know what sans serif means.
that was a red flag to me. when new artists, are saying to themselves, the most productive use of my time is to produce a new alphabet with a different shaped letter A ….it’s a saturation level of horrifying proportions.
and the population is growing, not shrinking. the limit IS, and has been, placed on artists. not the coal miners. the coal miners will be fine, there are new industries to take its place. they do no work with a talent, they work with a skill.
but the artists….the artists are the ones i’m seeing at the dining hall, where the homeless get lunch. the artists are the ones already pushed, ok? already shoved between the cracks. they aren’t in danger of losing jobs. they never got one. and who do you think has the brighter mind? who is creative. what kind of rights do they display? what kind of courage? turned into consumers of drugs, so the gangs can have an income? what the frack is this going on, and what kind a-holes at the top plotted this outcome? because I’m an artist. I’m seeing design, and purpose in this pattern. this horrible outcome that has less people going to church. yea, gnaw on that one for awhile.
so I look at these results. and my reason for addressing it now, is to express that customization for systems and computing, needs to be more than a dangled carrot. it needs to be a reality. I need to look out at the road, and see more than 5 colors of cars.
I think the best part of the train ride, is the outdoor art gallery of graffiti. your gang members are your artists. didn’t this set off any bells for ANYONE? I hope I’m not alone. more artists are being born, and less artists are needed by industry. maybe that should be the hint to mankind, that earth herself thinks it’s getting pretty ugly around here.
that said, I like what I’m seeing in animated wallpaper on android lately. buy a live wallpaper today for 99 cents and support an artist. buy an android and support a company that creates jobs for the artist. that understands the need for art and diversity. that bursts with originality. or buy a windows phone for excellent programming, that maintains inroads for the artist and design.
support manufacturing that has principals, other than greed and more greed. that doesn’t kill art.
open the world up…don’t close it in a dead spiral….of limited choices.
be on the winning side of life. be on the winning side of the artist. because life grows with art, and if there is no art, it doesn’t grow at all.
the easy path is the cookie cutter. the stamp.
what happens when all we are making, is the ugly distinction of conformity?
what happens, when beauty is reserved for the rich, and the poor support those wealthy with their ugliness in cookie cutter drab. with a trap more thorough than one of bars.
there is no way off this ride. but we can go in the direction that slows it enough to jump off! the thing that you are doing wrong, is you need to use artists to create roles for artists. you need to employ thinkers FOR business models, not followers using sure fire models for profit.
and it will struggle, and fail. I see that. heard the death tolls and bells, when saw Facebook win out over myspace. the dream of being all alike, and therefore not responsible, is too strong. but the dreamer in me, the artist in me, wants to see hope. wants to look out at the road and see vw beetles painted all colors. see kit cars. see a world that didn’t settle for pushing the artist out of business.
I dream of a world with no recipes. where instead, you share the cake and chat over coffee. one where we don’t have to stage a revolution to topple the wealthy. where the revolution happens at a different level. and a Renaissance is real, because that renaissance means more Art. but it has never had to battle the industrial revolution before. and the chemical revolution. and the minimalist revolution.
it has never had to face these kinds of odds, with this kind of economic foundation based on consumer greed and envy. this degree of isolation and fear. we are seeing the results of our model.
when results look like this, you need the artists at your board tables, not at the tables in the homeless dining hall. there needs to be a new model. a work that does not mock the different, but smiles at the many splendid ways of art?
how many different ways can I reiterate the same thing? art and personalization good. follow the leader bad. ended of story. sorry it took me so long to say it. have a nice….and original….day!
and PS: find a way to employ the artist. there are not many cracks left for them to wedge into, and call home.