Pie 2014 #1Happy Thanksgiving everybody! I hope you’re all having an great one.

In addition to being a time of thanks and reflection, Thanksgiving is also my (almost) annual baking of the pies. While I was worrying over this year’s crusts, I wondered if my pies were getting better or worse through the years. So, while they were in the oven, I dug up some old pie pictures. Here are the results…

JP’s Thanksgiving Pie Retrospective

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Everyone seems to be looking for designers. Yet, we don’t seem to be training them fast enough, or equipping them for the real world they will face after graduation. In Jared Spool’s How Do We Design Designers? talk, he describes the sort of training some of the best designers have received (hint: autodidacticism), and what our education system and design teams can do to foster better craftspeople.

About Face Software Dev DiagramA cold had me convalescing for a good part of the weekend. Between chicken soup meals, I managed to read a fair amount of About Face: The Essentials of Interaction Design, 4th Edition. There’s a lot of great information there, and it’s well worth the read–even if you’ve read previous editions.

Cooper has made the diagrams from About Face available under a creative commons license. So, look no further if you need some colorful illustrations to support your Goal Directed Design deck.

via Cooper Journal

Jordan Koschei has a good article about enterprise UX on A List Apart. While much of it might be familiar territory for those with some enterprise project history, it’s a good reminder of what’s important when working within corporations.

A successful enterprise UX project considers the users’ needs, the clients’ goals, and the organization’s priorities. The best user experience sits at the intersection of these concerns.

The timing of this article is very serendipitous for me. It was published on the second day of my new job where I am returning to my enterprise roots. This is something I’ve been looking forward to, and seeing this article was further confirmation that I made the right move. Thanks, Jordan!

Twine Packagingtl;dr: If you’re thinking about buying a Twine, do yourself a favor and look for something else.

I was doing a bit of cleaning and ran across my old Twine. It reminded me of how excited I was initially, and how disappointed I was when it didn’t meet expectations. Supermechanical did a great job in the beginning, the design was good, the packaging was delightful and their user interface was easy to use.

Twine wasn’t perfect though, the backend system lacked some key features, wasn’t reliable and the device was a black box that wasn’t hackable at all. For the most part, the users were understanding in the early days, most of the original backers from Kickstarter knew they weren’t buying a mass market product and expected some bumps in the road. Supermechanical was responsive initially, but after a few months, their responsiveness and software updates tapered off.

While user questions went unanswered on the Twine Community forums, Supermechanical started talking about a new product on their blog. The new product turned out to be Range, an iOS thermometer. As one of those users, I felt dumped. The product I had purchased was being ignored for something shiny, new, and ready-made for the sous-vide craze.

Unfortunately, things never got better. While it looks like one can still buy a Twine, it seems totally unsupported, at least based on the recent comments in the community forums and on the kickstarted page. Too bad since it had so much potential.