// BarryBlog //

A creative dumping ground for issues that interest me personally and professionally, with the thought they may interest you too. Issues such as the business of design, the design of business, the design of objects, design strategy, creative direction, innovation, creativity, thought leadership, observations, as well as recommendations, mid-century modern decorative arts and architecture, and the state of my thinking (and currently the state of my heart).

Saturday, December 30, 2006

2006: Thanks For Stopping By

Even with a lousy memory, I'll remember 2006 as the year of blogging and social media. I began BarryBlog in August - purely as an experiment – one I now consider worthwhile, and I've enjoyed my foray into a growing new community of contributors. Though the experiment was rather selfish in nature, there may have been things you've enjoyed as a result. If so, please take a moment to comment. Things you liked or disliked. Things you would like me to post about more in 2007. Or anything at all as you consider your experience with BarryBlog. I've met some great friends as a result of this living experiment, and hope that will continue in 2007. Thanks for participating in 2006. I promise more in 2007, yet with several months behind me I realize it's rather impossible to post good things all the time. So a goal of 2007 will be less – but better. Quality over quantity if you will. Again, I look forward to your comments. Take some time to drop me a line. Surely something in BarryBlog was worth commenting on, right?

Friday, December 29, 2006

Photojojo PhotoFashion

Made from stretchy machine washable neoprene and lined with soft fleece, the Electric Pocket by builtNY (the wine tote folks) lets you hook it onto a backpack, a handbag, a beltloop... whatever. Pretty cool, as are other items from Photojojo! We find the best photo shiz anywhere.

( via Photojojo newsletter )

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

International Book Fair: Guadalajara

Thomas Nelson's President and CEO Michael S. Hyatt sounds encouraged and energized by what he saw at the International Book Fair in Guadalajara, Mexico last month – and as an exhibitor at the show, Hyatt is uniquely qualified to comment. He's done so at his blog.

Here's my cliff notes, with Michael's full article HERE:

  • The Book Fair is sponsored by the University of Guadalajara, and is 20 years strong.

  • It's a general market show. Grupo Nelson chose to exhibit. Only Christian publisher to do so.

  • The booths were sophisticated and reminded Hyatt of BEA. Beautiful product, great graphics and great signage.

  • Floor opened 9 to 5:00 p.m. for publishers, booksellers, printers, the media, agents, authors, etc., and 5 to 9:00 p.m. to the public.

  • Over 525,000 attended. Aisles jammed. Hyatt says he's never seen so much excitement about books.

  • Half of the attendees were under the age of 30.

  • Aprox. 17,000 booksellers attended from 39 countries
I find it incredibly refreshing that Michael's comfortable enough and transparent enough to blog in this fashion and from such a unique perspective. As President and CEO of a major publishing house, wisdom and logic will tell you he has a bunch on his plate, so kudos to Michael for sharing his wisdom and insights with the rest of us, from where he sits. I've learned a great deal personally from his posts.

( via From Where I Sit blog ) – and – (Grupos VP/Editors Larry Down's Blog )


Tuesday, December 26, 2006

In a World...

The Godfather of voice over.

( Check out Don's website )

Labels: ,

Saturday, December 23, 2006

A Child Is Born!


Friday, December 22, 2006

Dust off the Statues...I Just Won!

Excellent! I just hit Ben's Noisy Decent Graphics blog and discovered he listed me as winner of his Noisy Decent Graphics Christmas Giveaway! Ben was feeling all web 2.0, and he decided to gift a Pro Flickr account to whoever could tell him what the first photograph on Flickr would be if that person won. I promised Ben I would drag my 500+ Statue of Liberties out of cold storage and take some choice snaps. And voila – after some highly scientific judging, he awarded me the Flickr Pro account. Sweet!

So this is gonna sound like a kiss up, but I love his blog. He intentionally only posts articles on having to do with design, and like myself, he updates frequently. Its a great blog, and I recommend it highly. Ben does some rather serious work as a founding partner of Design Conspiracy as well— a leading design consultancy specializing in communication design, branding and digital marketing.

Thanks Ben! I'm honored. I will not disappoint.

Weiden+Kennedy Tokyo Lab Studio

Taking all forms of medium and mashing into an all encompassing hybrid music experience. New music and new video mixed and made as one, under a single label. They are three uber talented people doing the work of an entire agency. (Sound familiar, Al and Dan?) First check out their Apple Pro profile. Then their website (kinda long download).

( via stealing beauty )

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Michael Beirut. Pentagram. Sak's New Look.

Come January 2nd, Saks Fifth Avenue dons it's new look. I've posted on Michael Beirut many times before, and here's yet another example of this great design thinker.

The advantage of the program, deployed in black and white like the store’s holiday “snowflake” packaging, is that it creates recognizable consistency without sameness. The logo elements will be used in signage and direct mail and advertising. Most importantly, there are over forty different packages in the program, from jewelry boxes to hat boxes, and four sizes of shopping bags. In the new program, no two of these are alike, yet they all go together. Our hope is that they will all become associated in the minds of shoppers with the style and elan of Saks Fifth Avenue.
Look forward to seeing it in person. An interesting note: the last Saks Fifth Avenue logo was designed by Beirut's former employer Massimo Vignelli.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

How Best To Evaluate Creative Work

Paul at Life In The Middle blog has some words to the wise about offering constructive and valuable criticism in a creative review.

( via Russell Davies )

DesignTaxi Interview: Neil Ashby

As you may know, I posted about Neil Ashby in the past. He's a designer whose work I admire. Well I just came across a great interview compliments of the folks at Taxi Design Network. Taxi has recently launched "Design Feature" – which has a ton of great stuff, including interviews of design minded individuals and what they call "Design Leaders." Well worth a visit.

( via designtaxi )

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Which comes first, the iPhone or Google Phone?

Neither chicken or egg, as neither exists yet, despite a staggering amount of rumors regarding the iPhone. But according to GigaOM, the new Google Phone may in fact be in the works. The report says Google2 might be working with HTC and mobile/telecom giant Orange to build a Google Mobile Phone, which could possibly have Google software inside the device. According to the article, Google Phone is a reasonable speculation. Google has been aggressive in developing location based services, has amp-ed up its local search and mapping services. In addition, it has also been mobilizing its applications such as GTalk and GMail. YouTube, the video arm of Google, is beginning to embrace the mobile ecosystem. Check out the full article here.

( via GigaOM )

Monday, December 18, 2006

Chronicle Books Spreads Christmas Joy!!

***UPDATE*** LAST DAY FOR 30% DISCOUNT: The Chronicle Books team dropped by this blog and read my post about their great website redesign. While they were here, they kindly decided to spread Christmas Joy! As a consequence of their generosity, all BarryBlog readers have been offered their Friends & Family discount of 30% off any title they sell now through Mon. Dec. 18th! All they ask is that you enter the promo code "FRIENDS" at checkout.
If I was smart enough to figure out how, I would wire this bad boy up so I'd get a ginormous commission from all 6 of you who read my blog (oops, with Chronicle Books, that makes 7)! Even better...why not show me some love and buy me some Chronicle books for Christmas, and/or for all the behind the scenes shenanigans that goes into making BarryBlog so warm and fuzzy, satisfying and reliable?

Maybe this one or this one? How 'bout this one or maybe this one. Perhaps this one. And don't forget this one.

Thanks Chronicle Book Team!

More Web 2.0 Realities

What a coincidence. So am I! According to TIME magazine's December 25th issue, we control the Information Age. Well then...Welcome to your world!

Web 2.0 is a massive social experiment, and like any experiment worth trying, it could fail. There's no road map for how an organism that's not a bacterium lives and works together on this planet in numbers in excess of 6 billion. But 2006 gave us some ideas. This is an opportunity to build a new kind of international understanding, not politician to politician, great man to great man, but citizen to citizen, person to person. It's a chance for people to look at a computer screen and really, genuinely wonder who's out there looking back at them. Go on. Tell us you're not just a little bit curious.
I've been sharing with freelance clients and staffers Adam Richardson's (Frog Design Mind) article called the Recommendation Age. In it Adam describes (I paraphrase) that the promises of the information age now require "recommenders" or "filters" to assist in weeding through the resulting deluge of information we now have access to. And blogs are the perfect answer to that. With so many discussions on the blogosphere pointing to this shift from traditional information structure and delivery to user generated content, co-creation, social connections, open source community, etc., it seems a tad bit ironic that a traditional news source like TIME Magazine's declaring it so is what makes it stick. Guess it's "official." Read the whole article here.

(tipped off by Logic+Emotion )

Resist Today: I Can't Resist

Resist Today is Dave Rau and Josh Bertrand. They're an outlet for independent artists and their friends to sell stuff they've all made by hand...analog, not digital, if you will. Purchases support local and independent artists. And contrary to many sites people blog about, this stuff is surprisingly affordable, and made in tiny limited editions.

These fine gents also have a great design portfolio at their design company Red Labor.

( via Cameron Moll - Authentic Boredom )

Saturday, December 16, 2006

My Experience: ChaCha Live Guide Search

I've posted cool tricks and ideas for getting better search results using Google and Pagebull in the past...but check this out. Go to ChaCha and enter your search term. Then click the "Search With Guide" option. Man is this the cat's meow. It's the lazy man's search option. And after all, you're way too busy and hifalutin to do your own web searches, right? Why not have someone else do 'em for ya'?.

I did. And when the session started, I was assigned Jason. I quickly learned he types about 975 words per minute. At first I thought Jason was a bot, but respectfully (Jason), since the results were somewhat, well, "human" - it made me think this was likely a real person. So I questioned him. At first he claimed he was a bot. But his answers were too funny, and too quick considering the specific nature of my requests. Then he let the cat out of the bag. ChaCha Guides are real people!
Now that kills me. Hard to believe. And as you'll see from the actual transcript below, not only is he a real guy, but he actually was cool, had a personality, and he gave me solid advice on my blog, which as you'll see was what I had originally asked about. All told this was a bundle of fun. Not sure how necessary ChaCha is or how it will fly with time, but you can bet your bippy I'll be keeping tabs to see if others are chatting ChaCha up. I recommend you try it yourself. What do you have to lose? It's so free even my cheap friend Freddy can afford it. ( Begin my transcript with Jason from ChaCha )

  • Status: Looking for a guide ...
  • Status: Connected to guide: JasonK
  • JasonK: Welcome to ChaCha!
  • You: What up Jason. Can ya find much about "BarryBlog" or perhaps more than Shannon D did when she searched for it's URL: http://www.studiosmith.blogspot.com"
  • JasonK: 'Sup, barry. You want info about the site?
  • You: Better would be to see if any of my posts have been linked to
  • JasonK: Just a moment.
  • JasonK: Hmm
  • JasonK: You posting on other sites - does that count? :)
  • You: Nada. Hey don't sweat it. I enjoyed this. How does it work? Are you live or a bot?
  • JasonK: I'm totally a bot
  • You: Coolio. Thanks for your botastic help.
  • JasonK: lol
  • JasonK: no problem
  • You: You're not a bot.
  • JasonK: True :)
  • You: Cool. Take it easy. Should I blog ChaCha?
  • JasonK: Sure, sure
  • JasonK: Post your own blog in other forums. My site gets a few dozen links from posting in forums, eventually the word spreads. It's one method anyway. Good luck
  • JasonK: Thanks for using chacha
  • You: Nice. Keep your eyeballs open, and tell people about my blog even if they don't ask. Sue everyone! :^)
  • JasonK: Come back, anytime, and enjoy my bot-ulism
  • JasonK: lol
  • JasonK: np
  • JasonK: good night
  • JasonK: :)
  • You: Out Thanks
  • JasonK: Please RATE ME. Thanks for using ChaCha.
  • Status: Session ended.
( via my friend and colleague Beth )

What Makes Someone Creative?

According to David Nottoli...

  1. Creativity exists in the execution, not the thought. One scientist points out that a lot of people have ideas, but they don't act on them
  2. The creative process isn't something you just turn on
  3. The human brain becomes more creative during uninhibited moments, as in when someone is experiencing mild mania
  4. People who are able to make more new and original associations are thought to be more creative
  5. Creativity is not exclusively a young person's game. A lot of highly creative people in the sciences are in their 70's
  6. There seems to be an unconscious knowledge that creative people use
  7. Artists are good at conveying significant gestures and the viewers bodies respond to the implied gestures of the artist
  8. Creativity is not just being novel. It also needs to be appropriate
  9. Despite lots of experimentation, there are no good tests that accurately identify creative kids
  10. Creativity appears to be a mystery we may be hundreds of years away from understanding
Agree. Disagree? Got some to add to the list? Love to hear from ya'.

Download the audio podcast.

( via sidewalklife )

Friday, December 15, 2006

Your Parents Help You Hook It Up!

Rad Nintendo...The Legend of Zelda sold separately.

Design: The New Management Consultancy

Or so Ben Terrett suggests in a thoughtful post he writes in his blog, Noisy Decent Graphics.

He first discussed this concept in a three series post called "The Future of Graphic Design." (Part 1, Part 2, Part3). Noisy Decent Graphics is one of my favorite blogs. Kudos Ben.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Chronicle Books: Redesign "Plus"

Not sure if this is still considered "news" or not, but...I've seen Chronicle Books web redesigns before (1, 2), but this one I found as a result of visiting my RSS subscription to Cameron Moll's Premium Linkage where he shows they're offering 40% off all books, ugh... well... until December 10th... (sigh).

Anyway, the Chronicle Books (new?) website couldn't be easier to use, and when you consider the nature of Chronicle product, one might expect visual eye candy. Instead, they've opted for understatement and usability. I especially appreciate their Podcast section, which features exclusive author interviews, man-on-the-street commentary, and tidbits on various topics.

For me, what differentiates Chronicle Books website from other book publisher websites is the fact that there is information and interest beyond pure utilitarian purpose. Like a print catalog that just shows product, more relevance is required if a publisher ever expects the audience to engage in any valuable way beyond "Business as usual." "Business by Design" is a more intentional and engaging enterprise. Just by adding editorial interest (story) in the form of Podcasts, Chronicle has given me a reason to come back. Plus, if I enjoy the editorial bend of the podcasts, it might leave a favorable impression on me. And as everyone knows (right?), Chronicle's brand value is really the sum of what other's believe it to be, not the other way around.

I've always believed in imparting personality into every project I develop on behalf of my employer, as a way to add business value and to build continuity with every effort.
The new Chronicle website does just that. It's makes the sales person happy as a utilitarian sales tool, and it serves a larger goal of leaving a favorable impression on me. Combined, the website has a personaility. A personality that to me just wouldn't be as interesting, appealing and memorable if it were "just a website."

excuse me, I'm going to go back to their site and listen to another podcast... or buy one of their books.

( via Cameron Moll - Authentic Boredom )

Confidence or Enthusiasm: Pick One

Those who know me well may be surprised to hear me admit that deep down I'm not particularly confident. Admittedly I fake it rather well. But between me, myself, and I (and now you), confidence has never come naturally. To the contrary, and to make up for this deficit, I've spent a career planning, paying attention, and practicing in order to be a strong performer. Therefore I believe it's safe to say that being a good performer isn't necessarily indicative of confidence in oneself.

Having said that, my desire to perform well and serve others and the passion and fitness associated with that, compared to my lack of confidence of late, has really been troubling. Deeply. Having internalized this much of late, I can't tell you how grateful I was to get a new perspective on just what it is that's been digging at me of late. In this article, by a smart person who I admire, and whose blog I subscribe to via his RSS feed, he shares five reasons why enthusiasm is better than confidence. To me, this is a refreshing bit of encouragement—news to my ears if you will, as it helps me to consider how enthusiasm and passion, two things which do come naturally to me, may in fact be related to my desire to do great work and produce value for my employer.

Boiled down to it's essence, confidence is always about yourself. Your position and concerns. Enthusiasm on the other hand, is about the work you’re presenting, the information you want to share, the message you’re trying to get across, etc. Not about your own position, rather the concern for others; your desire to share and learn and teach.And ultimately as an creative leader, to do great work that adds value.
I can't say with certainty this will resonate with you in the way it has for me, but I find Mark McGuinness's perspective innovative, refreshing, and a huge encouragement which couldn't have come at a better time. Read the entire article here.

( via wishfulthinking )

Play with Splatter

I know, I know, this is a fairly weak post. But check this out and see if you don't end up blowing 5 minutes of your life as I did.

( via Stamen.com )

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Interview: Frog Design's Luke Williams

powered by ODEO

Creative Expert interviews Frog Design's Associate Creative Director Luke Williams, who heads the New York studio's Industrial Design practice. Click the tiny pink arrow in the above audio file or go to this Podcast. For more on Frog, I have posted on them here, here and here in the past.

If you've never spent time on Creative Expert, do so. It's a treasure trove of great material and interviews about all things design.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Harness the Power of Search

You use Google all the time. But it's way more capable than you're aware. Take this for example. Say you want to search BarryBlog for any post I've ever created containing the word "design." Well, in the "Search Google" area in your browser, just add the term "site:" then the domain name you want to search, and then the word you want to find, e.g., "site:studiosmith.blogspot.com design" – which in this particular search yields about about 46 results. Try other searches, like "site:.com thought leadership" or "site:.edu design" – etc. Very cool. For more ways to fine tune your Google search skills, check out this link.

( via Dynamist )

Illustrator Alexei Vella

Freelance Illustrator Alexei Vella has a really cool style. Here's his website.

( via MeatHaus )

Friday, December 08, 2006

Best Innovation and Design Books 2006

Business Week Online – Innovation & Design Strategy, creativity & research
Best Innovation and Design Books for 2006

( via unbeige )

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Biz-as-Usual and Biz-by-Design: Tough Love

Another great Fast Company article—this time by Roger Martin, dean of the Rotman B-school, on the three keys to making business and design work place well. Because business wants to love design, but it's often an awkward romance.

1. Reckoning the Future: Prove It or Invent It?
2. The World of Work: Permanent Tasks or Temporary Projects?

3. Source of Status: A Large Staff or an Outsize Success?

Managing the yin and yang of business-as-usual and business-by-design means striking a balance between any number of countervailing impulses: Give people the freedom to follow their nose, but hold them accountable for their performance. Set a high bar, but recognize that failure is an unavoidable consequence of pushing into new territory. Do everything possible not just to thrill your customers but also to wring costs and efficiencies out of vendors and suppliers. The biggest challenge for all of us, designers and business people alike, is to become equally adept at quantifying the now and intuiting what's next. There's simply no other way to win.

( Read MORE )

Thoughts on Design

“Tell me what and I'll show you how." —Barry A. Smith, Recently

“Design is so critical it should be on the agenda of every meeting in every single department.” —Tom Peters, 2003

“I simply believe that design, per se, is the principal reason for emotional attachment (or detachment!) relative to a product or service or experience or brand proposition. Design, as I see it, is arguably the number one determinant of whether a product-service-experience brand proposition stands out ... or doesn’t; has integrity... or doesn’t; connects ... or doesn’t. Furthermore, it’s ‘one of those things’ that few companies put – consistently – on the front burner.”
—Tom Peters, 2004

“Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.” —Steve Jobs, 2003

“Design is hugely underrated as a strategic tool. Design is the essence of emotional attachment to a product or service or experience... and therefore the wellspring of the corporate culture (or ‘soul’) and of the brand proposition itself.”
—Tom Peters, 2004

“Beauty and brains, pleasure and usability — they should go hand in hand.” —Donald Norman, 2003

“The perfection of art is to conceal art.” —Quintilian, 95

“We require from buildings two kinds of goodness: first, the doing their practical duty well: then that they be graceful and pleasing in doing it.” —John Ruskin, 1880

“Design is a plan for arranging elements in such a way as best to accomplish a particular purpose” —Charles Eames

“To design is to communicate clearly by whatever means you can control or master” —Milton Glaser

“Design is directed toward human beings. To design is to solve human problems by identifying them and executing the best solution.” —Ivan Chermayeff

“Design is the art of gradually applying constraints until only one solution remains.” —Unknown

“The greatest challenge to any thinker is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution.”
—Bertrand Russell

“Interactive design [is] a seamless blend of graphic arts, technology, and psychology.” —Brad Wieners, 2002

“[Leonardo Da Vinci] combined art and science and aesthetics and engineering, that kind of unity is needed once again.” —Ben Shneiderman, 2002

“True interactivity is not about clicking on icons or downloading files, it’s about encouraging communication.” —Ed Scholssberg, 2002

“To dismiss front-end design as mere ‘icing’ is to jeopardize the success of any site.” —Curt Cloninger, 2001

“Good designers can create normalcy out of chaos; they can clearly communicate ideas through the organizing and manipulating of words and pictures.” —Jeffery Veen, 2000

“The ability to simplify means to eliminate the unnecessary so that the necessary may speak.” —Hans Hofmann

“Visual appearance is one of the most effective variables for quickly differentiating one application from another.” —Bob Baxley, 2003

“I’ve been amazed at how often those outside the discipline of design assume that what designers do is decoration. Good design is problem solving.” —Jeffery Veen, 2000

“Like all forms of design, visual design is about problem solving, not about personal preference or unsupported opinion.” —Bob Baxley, 2003

“Making the simple complicated is commonplace; making the complicated simple, awesomely simple, that's creativity.” —Charles Mingus

“The architect should strive continually to simplify; the ensemble of the rooms should then be carefully considered that comfort and utility may go hand in hand with beauty.” —Frank Lloyd Wright, 1908

“The design of good houses requires an understanding of both the construction materials and the behavior of real humans.” —Peter Morville, 2002

“Form follows function-that has been misunderstood. Form and function should be one, joined in a spiritual union.” —Frank Lloyd Wright

“The details are not the details. They make the design.” —Charles Eames

“Questions about whether design is necessary or affordable are quite beside the point: design is inevitable. The alternative to good design is bad design, not no design at all.” —Douglas Martin, 1989

“Science arose from poetry… when times change the two can meet again on a higher level as friends.” —Johann Goethe

“…effective communication is a key factor in the success of your product.” —Jesse James Garrett, 2002

“Problems with visual design can turn users off so quickly that they never discover all the smart choices you made with navigation or interaction design.” —Jesse James Garrett, 2002

“Good design is the most important way to differentiate ourselves from our competitors.” —Samsung CEO Yun Jong Yong, 2004

“Design is the easiest way to reenergize a product.” —Fast Company, 2005

“Where you innovate, how you innovate, and what you innovate are design problems.” —Tim Brown, 2005

“Your products run for election every day and good design is critical to winning the campaign.” —Procter & Gamble CEO A.G. Lafley, 2005

“Design's fundamental role is problem solver” —Fast Company, 2005

“When people talk about innovation in this decade, they really mean design” —Bruce Nussbaum, 2005

“Design is the fundamental soul of a human-made creation that ends up expressing itself in successive outer layers of the product or service.” —Steve Jobs, 2005

“Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.” —Steve Jobs, 2005

“You can't just ask customers what they want and then try to give that to them. By the time you get it built, they'll want something new.” —Steve Jobs, 2005

“I prefer design by experts - by people who know what they are doing” —Don Norman, 2005

“The commonality between science and art is in trying to see profoundly - to develop strategies of seeing and showing.” —Edward Tufte, 2005

“Design can be art. Design can be aesthetics. Design is so simple, that's why it is so complicated.” —Paul Rand, 1997

“Simplicity is not the goal. It is the by-product of a good idea and modest expectations.” —Paul Rand, 1997

“Simple design, intense content.” —Edward Tufte, 2004

“A designer knows he has achieved perfection not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.” —Antoine De Saint-Exupery

“Truly elegant design incorporates top-notch functionality into a simple, uncluttered form.” —David Lewis, 2006

“When you take technology and mix it with art, you always come up with something innovative.” —Robert Rodriguez, 2006

“An enterprise's most vital assets lie in its design and other creative capabilities.” —Samsung chairman Kun-Hee Lee, 2006

“Business success is always defined by the quality of the overall customer experience.” —Forrester Research, 2001

“Websites that are hard to use frustrate customers, forfeit revenue and erode brands.” —Forrester Research, 1998

“It's all about one thing: creative problem-solving to get the story out.” —Robert Greenberg, R/GA, 2006

“The challenge is about taking things that are infinitely complex and making them simpler and more understandable.” —Robert Greenberg, R/GA, 2006

“The product is the brand. You build brand in our industry through the product and the experience.” —Jim Wicks, Motorola, 2006

“Design is always about synthesis -synthesis of market needs, technology trends, and business needs.” —Jim Wicks, Motorola, 2006

“It's really hard to design products by focus groups. A lot of times, people don't know what they want until you show it to them.” —Steve Jobs, 1998

( via lukew )

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Creative Commons: Some Rights Reserved

I've been a proponent of
Creative Commons (CC) since
it's onset in 2001. Since that time, the subject of free, royalty free, right managed and licensing of photography (and other assets) in general continues to come up in discussions with my circle of clients, colleagues and collaborators. After all, most everyone knows what "All Rights Reserved" means. But what about "Some Rights Reserved?" Do you know what that means?

In short, a Creative Commons license is based on copyright, and applies to all works protected by standard copyright law—such as books, websites, blogs, photographs, films, videos, songs, etc.. A CC license allows you to determine how others exercise your copyright rights—like the right to copy your work, make derivative works or adaptations, and to distribute and to money from your work. So if Daniel has a copy of your CC-licensed work, he can share a copy with Winder–then Winder will be authorized to use it too, so long as it's consistent with the CC license you have attached to it, for which there are several choices of license you can assign. You then have a license agreement separately with both of them. The CC licenses are provided in three different formats: Commons Deed (human-readable); Legal Code (lawyer-readable); and the metadata (machine readable). Another great thing about a CC license is that they are all non-exclusive—meaning you can allow the public at large to use your work under a CC license, while entering into a separate and unique non-exclusive license with someone else, for example, in exchange for money.

As you can see, this subject isn't a quick read, and certainly requires a bit to get your brain around. But if you take away just one thing, know that Creative Commons is widly recognized and utilized. I've benefitted, as have my clients and employer, by using CC licensed images in my work, and have had over 3,500 downloads of my own images, all of which I've shared for free.

So poke around the main website, then check out these videos to learn even more. And feel free to comment. I'd love to hear your thoughts.

YotoPhoto: Search "Free-to-use" photos

Yotophoto searches for free-to-use photographs and images, indexing Creative Commons, Public Domain, GNU FDL, and various other 'copyleft' images.
While some of the images are in the Public Domain, most are released under Creative Commons, GNU FDL or similar licenses. These licenses typically have some minor conditions of use (such as requiring that credit be given to the photographer). Yotophoto offers resources and links to help users understand and comply with the license conditions (because we hate legalese as much as you do).

Free-to-use photos are not all the same, and generally do require restrictions of various sorts. I came across a great article recently which may shed more light on this. I always recommend using keen judgement when using such images, and suggest not using an image if it's not clear in writing the photo owner/distributors intent. Always read the source "Terms of Service" (TOS) or "Licensing" before downloading any such image.

( via photoshopsupport )

Monday, December 04, 2006

Space Food Sticks: You're Alive!

This no doubt gives hint to my age, but no less than a half dozen times in the last couple years the subject of "Johnson Space Food Sticks" has come up in conversation—by me, that is. Seems no one remembers these delicious morsels of goodness. So much so that I was beginning to wonder if they were just a self fabricated memory. But I do understand why I've received so many blank stares when I consider a majority of my colleagues were born after 1973—the year Space Food Sticks were introduced.

Space Food Sticks (later called "Food Sticks" after the energy crisis of the mid-1970s when the space program took a back seat politically) were REALLY popular with my schoolmates, and it always seemed like we were as cool as the astronauts when we peeled back the thin wax foil and bit into "a piece of the future." For reference, the term "energy snack" was not yet invented. Anyway, you'll notice I refer to them as "Johnson" Space Food Sticks. I do believe they were cobranded with Johnson Space Center (NASA), but nothing I have found online indicates this.

And if reconnecting with this cool product from the past isn't already enough...get this: they are now available online!! So without further ado, like a lost friend from 30 years past, I bring you...Space Food Sticks!

( special thanks to Eric Lefcowitz at RetroFuture )

Friday, December 01, 2006

BarryBlog Automatically Sent To Your Email

I've just updated BarryBlog, and as a result, you can now have BarryBlog sent directly to your email!
Just enter your address and click the subscribe link (which is located about 3-4 inches below my face, right next to where you're reading now). Once subscribed, you are notified whenever a new post is made to BarryBlog. Couldn't be easier than that. Please subscribe so that my stats will show people are actually reading this once in awhile. For advanced users using an RSS reader (such as the one I posted previously, NewsFire), you can click the "Subscribe in a reader" link, then copy and paste the URL into your reader. My feed is set to "auto-discovery." If you have questions about RSS, let me know.

Please take advantage of this new service. It took me a ton of time to figure out how to pull all the switches and turn all the dials to make this possible, so show your love. Plus I'm getting tired of sending out manual emails.

Hugs and kisses from the "staff" at BarryBlog.

I, Ugh...Had to Blog This!

( via swissmiss )

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