An essay on the risks of designing using design patterns.
An journal post on my experience with the Vale of Glamorgan planning departments handling of a proposed housing development near my house in South Wales.
In April 2013, I spoke at the Do Lectures in West Wales.
The article I wrote for 24ways on how to typeset the right rag on the web.
2013 brought with it more work in and amongst editorial processes for Mark Boulton Design. And with it, some challenges designing systems that can react to the speed of the story.
A write-up of work for Al Jazeera between 2010 and 2013 working on a redesign of their digital design language.
Mark Boulton Design was nominated for a few awards for this year's Net Awards.
I've had a few people ask me recently about how we work at Mark Boulton Design. And, the truth be told, it slightly differs from project to project, from client to client. But the main point is that we work in an iterative way with prototypes at the heart of our work every step of the way.
A post in which I describe the cyclical way of the web design industry to keep trying to define itself and what it does.
How and when we do collaborative moodboards with clients at Mark Boulton Design.
Mark Boulton Design is acquired by Monotype on the 7th April 2014.
A game I play with my two year old daughter as I try to answer the question 'why?'
Thoughts on Google Chrome’s experiments on ditching the URL.
Number one in a series of posts called ‘My Handbook’
In memory of Rebecca Meyer.
Musing over why I'm taking a year off speaking at web conferences in 2015.
Two years later, I've changed how we watch films and TV in the Boulton household.
In which I disagree with my previous articles
How we can create design SDKs to ensure our design work is progressed in the right way with other designers
An article about how to design a portfolio and my experience of applying advice from one of the first Art Directors I worked with.
On Marginal Degredation and how tiny, little deviations from a product design, or brand, can have a massive, cumulative effect.
How to go about creating, launching and managing a design system in a place that makes it hard to do so.
What do design systems and Postel’s law have in common?
In which I announce I'm leaving the company that bought my company three years ago.
How I define design principles and specifically for EMBL.
In which I announce I'm starting a new job at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory
A new design. Some new bits and pieces. An an awful lot of new stuff under the hood.
A post in which I describe how we use Zapier and Trello at EMBL to figure out our editorial calendar
A post in which I outline my little method for getting people to think before asking.
A week of getting my head down with work, trying to cope with the banging and hammering of the building site surrounding three sides of our house. Some good news from my dad, and a little bit of a rant on Twitter.
Our eldest daughter is soon moving to secondary school a short bus journey away from our house. Many of her friends already own and use phones regularly. For a while, Emma and I have resisted but as she will be making her way to the school independently, for her safety and our piece of mind, we thought a phone would be a good idea.
A week spent in Heidelberg full of cycling. More Brexit delays. And a phone contract for my eldest daughter who starts secondary school in September.
A weekend in snowdonia, some rambling about marginal gains, and a visit to the theatre to see Tom Gates, a recent favourite series of children's books
First weeknote for six weeks or so. Not doing so well at keeping this habit up. This week I talk about Where the Light Gets In, the soon-to-be-reborn Stockport, and a bunch of links I've enjoyed over the past few weeks.
Last week I was at a cycling training camp in Gran Canaria to get me ready to ride La Marmotte in France in a few weeks time. It was a big week.
These weeknotes seem to be turning into month notes. Oh well. This week - La Marmotte.
Mallorca, Jellyfish stings, Cycling
A few weeks ago I presented at
New iPhone, fish, and stocking up on wood for winter.
After 24 years of using Adobe design software products – starting with Photoshop 2, today, I've finally cut the chord and cancelled my subscription to Creative Cloud.
In 1984 my uncle's mother died. She lived in a tiny bungalow at the end of a small street with a long garden leading on to a golf course. It was always raining in 1984. On this day it was drizzling with heavy grey skies. The trees at the end of the garden complaining as much as the adults in the house sorting through a lifetime of stuff.
Design teams in large organisations are scaling faster every year. These are organisations that have heavily invested in design as a differentiator and in doing so are struggling to provide the best management structure and processes to help brilliant designers to do amazing work. My growing fear is that this is at the expense of the work, but also of the health and wellbeing of swathes of designers.
Yesterday, I was pondering on how discussion frameworks can help streamline all sorts of things within design. Discussion guides help keep user research focussed and the results comparable. Kickoff meeting agenda guides can accelerate projects and are designed to uncover project difficulties before you start. The Five Whys is designed to really get to the heart of a problem and help the receiver to work through a potential solution in answering. Diamond discussions is a discussion framework to help you get from A to B to solve problems faster.
Riffing off Robin's post on his improvements using Alfred, I wanted to break down how to do each step.
I fixed my RSS feeds! Hurray! To be honest I didn't know they were broken until a couple of friends let me quietly know. The surprising thing was the amount of users I'd be neglecting and the amount of subsequent bandwidth this website used since fixing them!
A week note in which I talk about improvements to this website, a very efficient taxi service from Cowbridge on the weekend, and a cycling injury :(
The monthly trip to Heidelberg, a couple of films, dodging ill people, familiarising myself with horrible things like risk registers.
Sat on a train on the way back from Cambridge. Spending time staring out of the window realising I don't do enough of that.
A sniffling cold. The last trip to Heidelberg for the year. The start of two weeks off.
The cold turns into chest infection. The death of a design hero. An aside into purposeful inspiration and visual hoarding.
A year end recap. A bit of reflecting on the last decade. Some grumbling about Brexit, but that's the last time, I promise. It's been a while since I wrote an end of year summary post.
I'm leaving EMBL in a few weeks. Do you have a project or role in which you'd think I'd be a good fit? Then get in touch!
The day I went to Buckingham Palace, queued for a sandwich and accidentally met the Queen.
The one where we went to Ynishir, I get over a bad chest infection, and I get my laptop repaired.
Fixed a MacBook. Fixed a light. Went to New Adventures. Finally, after about 15 years, documented some work and published it on this website.
How does your design system turn the brand dial up or down in a diverse organisation?
A week in Germany.
I talk about design tasks and why they are a terrible idea, how organisations can do better, and how designers might approach interviewing in a slightly different way.
Mostly about Coronavirus and my last trip to Heidelberg.
The week after Germany. Things are getting serious now. Schools out. A week to myself and nothing but a head of wasps for company.
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