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Entries from 2011

2011 was the year of the Rabbit

The year 2011 (MMXI) is a common year starting on Saturday. It is the 2011th year of the Common Era, also known as the Christian Era or the Anno Domini designation; the 11th year of the 3rd millennium and of the 21st century, and the 2nd of the 2010s decade.


31 2011 in music

Twelve months ago I started something I now have to maintain: an annual roundup of the music I’ve fallen in love with each year. So, following the aforementioned 2010 roundup, here’s my year in music, 2011.

31 2011 in review

The year 2010 was an important and epic one for me, so as it ended I wrote about it in some detail. In doing so, I set myself the goal of documenting each year I survive, and as 2011 was equally epic in some regards, I really want a record of it for the future me.

21 Taming Complexity

I’m going to step into my UX trousers for this one. I wouldn’t usually wear them in public, but it’s Christmas, so there’s nothing wrong with looking silly.

06 My digital preservation utopia

At Build last month, Jeremy Keith gave a presentation about preserving our websites, documents, and personal timelines. He talked about avoiding data loss and shared his fears for the future. I really soaked up his thoughts, even though I had to get up and speak directly after him.


19 Another lesson learned

I learned many things at Brooklyn Beta, but one lesson will stay with me for some time. Announcing our new app capped a humbling and fear-inducing afternoon. Despite years of experience presenting, I was a mess.

12 Frontend, Oslo

A few days in Oslo to speak at Frontend conference.

06 Don’t settle

Drawing from some of the most pivotal points in his life, Steve Jobs, chief executive officer and co-founder of Apple Computer and of Pixar Animation Studios, urged graduates to pursue their dreams and see the opportunities in life’s setbacks at Stanford University’s 114th Commencement on 12th June, 2005.


21 My recommended reading

During my talks and subsequent conversations, I often mention numerous books that have influenced my thinking. As a result, I’m getting an increasing number of emails and tweets asking for a full list. So, to deal with that, I’ve pulled together the following list.

12 One minute with...

I recently had the pleasure of being interviewed by Conor O’Driscoll for his excellent One Minute With website.

04 Conferences and expectations

I have just returned from dConstruct, unpacking ideas, not just about the web, but also the conference itself, and the views of its audience.


30 Gimme Bar

For three days only, my favourite web-based stuff-collection service is opening its doors to the public, ahead of a full launch sometime in the near future.

19 Lesson

Marked by intense focus and mutual understanding, a conversation with artist Ian Breakwell yields a necessary breakthrough and sets the foundation for a creative path.

19 Maturity and the Weight of Learning

As the web matures, great designers are distinguished not by conviction but by the ability to look beyond the tools at hand, to inquire deeply, and to define a lexicon for the field.

18 The Manual

I have been fortunate enough to contribute to numerous publications in my time, but without doubt the contribution I’m most proud of kicks off the beautiful and important first edition of The Manual.


31 Perth and Fremantle

A long trip to Perth, Australia, to live upside down for a week, speak at a conference and see Elbow at Metro City.

05 New Adventures 2012

Today, we’re thrilled to launch the second New Adventures in Web Design. It will take place in wintry Nottingham on Thursday 19th January 2012.


29 New Adventures audio and slides

Some five months after the inaugural New Adventures in Web Design conference in Nottingham, I’ve finally found time to get the talks and slides online for you to spoil your eyes and ears with.

18 Brooklyn Superhero Supply

Last week during my sixth trip to New York, I finally made it to the wonderful Brooklyn Superhero Supply Co., purveyors of high quality crimefighting merchandise.

18 Interlink in Vancouver

I recently had the pleasure of travelling to far-away Vancouver to speak at the inaugural Interlink conference, hosted by Shawn Johnston.

18 Winning at The Critters

I’m so thrilled that New Adventures in Web Design was recently awarded Event of the Year at The Critters, held at the Hospital Club in London.


07 Forthcoming speaking events

Since going freelance some sixteen months ago, I’ve been doing a lot more speaking and running workshops, belatedly getting to see a little more of our big round planet in the process.


21 Guilty Pleasures

I’ve been enjoying the beautifully designed mixes over at Designers.MX, curated by Blake Allen and Josh Sullivan. It was a pleasure to contribute a mix, though I opted for something a little risky.



My second trip to Austin, Texas, for my first SXSW.


07 10th Icelandic Web Awards

Last week I had the pleasure of providing the keynote and giving out the trophies at the 10th Icelandic Web Awards in a stormy, snowy Reykjavík. I thought it’d be nice to share with you the winners on the night; a chance to see what cuts the mustard in less familiar territory.


29 New Adventures ident

While editing video footage, I felt we needed something to enforce our identity and demonstrate the scale and ambition of the event. So, I commissioned an ident.

26 Reflecting on New Adventures

After six months of planning and an ever-increasing buzz, the day finally came when 650 web designers descended on Nottingham for the very first New Adventures event. I’m still exhausted and frantically evaluating it all, but now seems like a good time to sum up the highs and the lows of this bold new adventure.

25 New Adventures identity

A number of folks have asked why the New Adventures logo has so many variants, and how it all works together. So, here’s a post exploring the final logo and logotype variants we ended up with after a lengthy process.

25 The New Adventures paper

Following on from New Adventures, which finally happened last week, I want to write a series of short posts about the nuts and bolts. Firstly, a little about the name, the newspaper and the inspiration for the cover artwork.

21 Hello

In June last year, I was sat at the back of Greg Wood’s editorial design talk in San Francisco. The workshop content itself was really valuable, but the group discussion that followed was a revelation.