Od „Ala Ma Kota” Do E-Matury slides

These are the slides from my presentation at the Od „Ala Ma Kota” Do E-Matury conference in Warsaw, on 18 April 2012. The talks were 16 minutes long, so this is a fairly condensed deck. As always, my slides are starting points for each idea; there’s about a minute’s worth of elaboration for the key ones. I’ve been asked to write the talk up, and I’ll link to that when it goes public.

Ala Ma Kota conference slide 1
“It’s typography, Jim, but not as we know it…”

Six observations, four challenges, one conclusion, and five predictions…

Ala Ma Kota conference slide 2
Observations
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 3
People run out of time faster than they run out of options
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 4
There’s no such thing as “new media”, only new users
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 5
Internationalisation and geography matter
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 6
The permanent and ephemeral are reversed
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 7
Materials become precious
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 8
The market does not wait for teachers to write lesson plans
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 9
Physical properties are no help in predicting potential uses
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 10
Challenges for designers
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 11
Support for text and typography is not Good Enough
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 12
Support for text and typography is not Good Enough
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 13
Typographers lose the reassurance of familiar, visible, tactile structures
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 14
(A conventional structure is defined by spreads and sequence in the bound object)
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 15
(An e-publication’s structure relies on content sections…)
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 16
(…which are not differentiated without reference to external navigation)
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 17
(…and therefore rely on the root-level navigation for the publication to explain itself)
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 18
We lack great models for integrating inline and immersive content
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 19
Texts are becoming nodes in networks, but typography has been volume-bound 
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 20
(A single of the sections we identified has four aspects that traditional typography has no solution for:) 
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 21
(links within the text to other texts,)
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 22
(annotations by the user,)
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 23
(annotations by other users,)
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 24
(and links within the annotations.)
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 25
(Developments in literature, which is easy to parse, show some ways forward) 
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 26
(uncovering meaningful connections in the text)
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 27
Conclusion
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 28
This emerging typography is traditional at the paragraph level, and potentially innovative at the semantic level 
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 29
Predictions 
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 30
Three to five years of conservative solutions: just ‘digital books’
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 31
Local interfaces will adopt traditional solutions
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 32
Personal aggregators will threaten traditional authorship models
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 33
Knowledge platforms will push beyond ‘digital books’ when trust systems mature
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 34
Authors, publishers, and students will continue to adapt much faster than teachers (and schools, and education authorities)
Ala Ma Kota conference slide 35
Thank you

 

Explaining typeface design

This morning Fiona, Peter Bil’ak and I visited the UBA to see some of the work of the postgraduates on the UBA course (see the Typography at Reading blog). One of Henrique Nardi’s images captured me sketching an aide memoire for the session, which is worth linking to here to have handy for the sessions next week.

The axes describe a simple framework for talking about typeface design projects. At the top of the diagram is the Designer, and at the bottom the brief (and the client, who represent the requirements of the users). The left of the horizontal axis represents the Functional requirements in the project, and to the right the expression of individuality and Identity through the design of the typeface.

Gerard Unger gets the SoTA award

Yesterday evening Gerard Unger was deservedly awarded the S[o]TA Award, and joins an illustrious group of previous recipients. I had the pleasure of following John Downer and Juliet Shen with a few words. He later asked me if I’d written it down, and I responded that I only had headings noted:

notes on GU's award

Not possible to read, so here’s an exact transcription; some day I’ll have to write this up:
— Why?

— Excellence in design practice
* Longevity (40)
* Identity
* Integrity — work founded on deep engagement
* Establishment of a genre [even in Dutch environment
* Contribution to our innate sense of “rightness”

— Teaching
* Rietveld, __Rdg__, Leiden
* immersion in st[u]d[ent] processes
* openness
* sharing
* absence of ego

— Writing
* engaging with discourse
* strong inv[olvement] w[ith] how we read
* defining the field [of typeface design]
* leaving texts for reflect[ion]
I realize these notes don’t make much sense, but they give the outline of my thoughts yesterday.