“When you go out to where your audience congregates, you very quickly see your thinking, or the work from their side of things. You realise that what you thought was cultural dynamite was pretentious twaddle. That the fights over that endline are not the point, this lot won’t even care. That your strategy that was fine in theory won’t work in real life. That finding a way to matter to the people will only come from starting with their lives, not their buying habits. Suddenly you get them. And when you get them, you can find a way to matter to them.”—Andrew Hovell “Get Out There” (via peterspear)
“The arts are not a way of making a living. They are a very human way of making life more bearable. Practicing an art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow, for heaven’s sake. Sing in the shower. Dance to the radio. Tell stories. Write a poem to a friend, even a lousy poem. Do it as well as you possibly can. You will get an enormous reward. You will have created something.”—Kurt Vonnegut, A Man Without a Country (2005)
I am at Stumptown enjoying an americano and the New York Times. Across from me is the most adorable set of hipster Digerati you’ve ever seen. I’ve stopped reading to record the scene.
Tall, thin blond young woman with iPad.
Thicker, bearded guy, bespekled guy in soccer, nay, futbol jersey with Kindle and iPhone 4.
Shorter dude, buzzed hair, earlobe spacers, printed hoodie, keys on carabeaner through beltloop and, of course, with iPad.
Topics have ranged from MSN to the role of product management to interaction design. Now there is a discussion of tagging and PR spin.
Of course, I can’t deny that I was this way once, and occasionally am now, minus the clothes and portable electronics. I guess that’s why I adore them.
What strikes me is the discussion of product management and interaction design and how different roles work with each other. The web, and web development, is such a fundamentally collaborative effort. More so than any thing else I know. And, these are issues that I have personally struggled with for my entire career, and still do.
I am reminded of a conversation from last week with Alex Berg of Bonanza.com. In short, we we’re ruminating on the importance of teamwork and the efforts he makes to hire good team players. (He promised a guest blog post on that…I need to follow up.)
Finally, I am reminded of the post from early November by the Carnegie-Mellon professor. Strong social skills outperform high IQ’s.