poetry in motion

I have always loved poet­ry. It has drawn some of the most vivid pic­tures I have ever seen. In this case Ron­nie Bruce a film stu­dent at Tem­ple Uni­ver­si­ty visu­al­izes the words of poet Tay­lor Mali using typog­ra­phy and ani­ma­tion. In its’ exe­cu­tion we do not lose sight of the mean­ing or the pic­ture they draw — we gain new insight into the pac­ing and tone as the poet speaks. We read the words as the poet says them; bur­nish­ing them into our heart and mind.

This lit­tle film real­izes the poten­tial of com­mu­ni­ca­tors when they do good work. It is not spec­tac­u­lar. It is not just clever. It speaks, we think, and understand.

Typog­ra­phy from Ron­nie Bruce on Vimeo.

breathing and balance

acrobat poison dart frog

Life has been a bit com­plex recent­ly. I’ve always dri­ven into the skid so to speak. But this time it’s dif­fer­ent the eco­nom­ic atmos­phere has much thin­ner air these days. It’s dif­fi­cult to breathe.

I decid­ed to take some time to focus on noth­ing and breathe deeply. Qui­et time reestab­lish­es balance.

Walk in John Maeda’s shoes.

John Mae­da lives at the inter­sec­tion of tech­nol­o­gy and art, a place that can get very com­pli­cat­ed. I under­stand that place very well. I’m post­ing this talk because there is so much of it that I relate with.

This talk cre­ates more ques­tions than answers. It is about observ­ing, ques­tion­ing, and exper­i­ment­ing. Cre­at­ing some­thing new that adds to the uni­verse. Some­thing that brings joy. Orga­niz­ing found objects and every­day things to make some­thing total­ly new.

John Mae­da uses imag­i­na­tion to inspire. Walk one day in John Maeda’s shoes. Think, what would John Mae­da do with this? Open your mind to new and cre­ative ways to move for­ward in what­ev­er you do.

BTW, Mr Mae­da is no longer at MIT he is now Pres­i­dent of Rhode Island School of Design. Makes me think about how much fun it could be to be back in school. You can find out more about what he is doing there. http://www.risd.edu/president/

poem today : It Is a Living Coral, William Carlos Williams

a trou­ble

archaical­ly fettered
to produce

E Pluribus Unum an
island

in the sea a Capitol
surmounted

by Armed Liberty—
painting

sculp­ture strad­dled by
a dome

eight mil­lion pounds
in weight

iron plates constructed
to expand

and con­tract with
variations

of tem­per­a­ture
the folding

and unfold­ing of a lily.
And Congress

autho­rized and the
Commission

was entrust­ed was
entrusted!

a sculp­tured group
Mars

in Roman mail placing
a wreath

of lau­rel on the brow
of Washington

Com­merce Minerva
Thomas

Jef­fer­son John Hancock
at

the table Mrs. Motte
presenting

Indi­an burn­ing arrows
to Generals

Mar­i­on and Lee to fire
her mansion

and dis­lodge the British—
this scaleless

jum­ble is superb

and accu­rate in its
expression

of the thing they
would destroy—

Bap­tism of Poca-
hontas

with a lit­tle card
hanging

under it to tell
the persons

in the picture.

It climbs

it runs, it is Geo.
Shoup

of Ida­ho it wears
a beard

it fetch­es naked
Indian

women from a river
Trumbull

Var­num Henderson
Frances

Willard’s corset is
absurd—

Banks White Columbus
stretched

in bed men felling trees

The Hon. Michael
C. Kerr

one­time Speak­er of
the House

of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives
Perry

in a row­boat on Lake
Erie

chang­ing ships the
dead

among the wreckage
sick­ly green

iPad platform ready for tablet publications

This video is being shared all over the place as the next com­ing. Not all that imag­i­na­tive. These are all pret­ty sim­plis­tic ways of adding inter­ac­tiv­i­ty once you have a touch screen. So, will you care after the first three times you use it? Will you want to inter­act with con­tent this way on a reg­u­lar basis?

How will a read­er be able to avoid the adver­tis­ing is the ques­tion that comes to mind. Will adver­tis­ers want to invest the resources need­ed to make adver­tis­ing for these kind of pub­li­ca­tions? Adver­tis­ers a con­sis­tent mod­el to build ads. For pric­ing and pro­duc­tion. Seems like a big barrier.

With each pub­li­ca­tion design­ing it’s own inter­ac­tiv­i­ty where is the com­mon interface?

Just not con­vinced that this par­tic­u­lar mod­el is sustainable.

Freezing out women : sexism ski jumping in Olympics

I had no idea. Did you? Did you know that women are not allowed to com­pete in Ski Jump­ing in the win­ter olympics? Did you know that a woman holds the WORLD RECORD? Watch this piece and as you get more angry as you find out more — get angy and speak out. I will post resources to take action as I find them. If you know of any orga­ni­za­tions that will help please com­ment here.

failure and imagination

J.K. Rowl­ing Speaks at Har­vard Com­mence­ment from Har­vard Mag­a­zine on Vimeo.

Your qual­i­fi­ca­tions, your CV, are not your life, though you will meet many peo­ple of my age and old­er who con­fuse the two. Life is dif­fi­cult, and com­pli­cat­ed, and beyond anyone’s total con­trol, and the humil­i­ty to know that will enable you to sur­vive its vicis­si­tudes. — J.K. Rowling

Watch the whole speech, real­ly. It was quite amaz­ing to lis­ten to the wis­dom and chal­lenge that the author put before this grad­u­at­ing class at Har­vard. How she remind­ed them of their priv­i­lege yet embraced their achieve­ments. How she remind­ed us all of the val­ue of imag­in­ing and act­ing on behalf of others.

on fail­ure :

So why do I talk about the ben­e­fits of fail­ure? Sim­ply because fail­ure meant a strip­ping away of the inessen­tial. I stopped pre­tend­ing to myself that I was any­thing oth­er than what I was, and began to direct all my ener­gy into fin­ish­ing the only work that mat­tered to me. Had I real­ly suc­ceed­ed at any­thing else, I might nev­er have found the deter­mi­na­tion to suc­ceed in the one are­na I believed I tru­ly belonged. I was set free, because my great­est fear had been realised, and I was still alive, and I still had a daugh­ter whom I adored, and I had an old type­writer and a big idea. And so rock bot­tom became the sol­id foun­da­tion on which I rebuilt my life.

on imag­i­na­tion :

Now you might think that I chose my sec­ond theme, the impor­tance of imag­i­na­tion, because of the part it played in rebuild­ing my life, but that is not whol­ly so. Though I per­son­al­ly will defend the val­ue of bed­time sto­ries to my last gasp, I have learned to val­ue imag­i­na­tion in a much broad­er sense. Imag­i­na­tion is not only the unique­ly human capac­i­ty to envi­sion that which is not, and there­fore the fount of all inven­tion and inno­va­tion. In its arguably most trans­for­ma­tive and rev­e­la­to­ry capac­i­ty, it is the pow­er that enables us to empathise with humans whose expe­ri­ences we have nev­er shared.

You can read the full text of the speech here : Har­vard Magazine