Twenty Two exceptional international speakers in two days. Brain-food heaven or sheer madness?
This year we had four Optimates representing at Webstock 2013 and if you were lucky enough to be there too I’m sure you’ll agree it was a vintage year. But if you weren’t that lucky (or were and want to know what we made of it), we thought it worth sharing our take on the three most significant UX out-takes for 2013 and beyond.
1) Constraints equal innovation
Innovation is the byproduct of turning a complex problem into an easier one. For example, say you want to build your dream home. Change that to build your dream home in 34 square meters. Gary Chang was able to fit 24 different room designs into a 34 square metre apartment. This shows how adding constraints results in innovation. This can be applied not only to design but most problems you face in everyday life. It’s not so much about thinking outside the box, it’s about choosing what box to think inside.
“Design is the beauty of changing constraints into advantages” – Aza Raskin
2) You are directly responsible for what you put into the world
Self-proclaimed asshole and fiery advocate for conscious design, Mike Monteiro spoke animatedly with many expletives, reminding us to take responsibility for what we help to bring into the world, to exercise our right to say no to things that don’t meld with us as ethical, thinking beings. After all, as he so poignantly pointed out “the monsters we unleash into the world will be named after us”. Mike reminded us of the responsibility we have to ourselves, the world and our craft. If you can already feel your blood boiling with red-hot designer passion I highly recommend checking out his book ‘Design is a Job’.
“We need to fear the consequences of our work more than we love the cleverness of our work.” - Mike Monteiro
3) The internet is dead
And there are five reasons for that: Apple, Google, Amazon, Facebook, and Microsoft. These big five American vertically organized silos are re-making the world in their image. If you’re Nokia or HP or a Japanese electronics manufacturer, they stole all your oxygen. There will be a whole lot happening among these five vast entities in 2013. What will the world that they create look like?
Science Fiction Author turned futurist, Bruce Sterling is one of those polarising and inconsistent speakers, but when he is on form, boy does he bring the house down. Bruce presented a compelling argument to abandon our attachment to the constructs and concerns of Web 2.0 and embrace the new world of The Stack.
“The internet had users. The stack has livestock.” – Bruce Sterling
With huge thanks to Tash, Mike, Debbie and Ben for another totally wicked event.
Watch out for a selection of speaker videos at http://talks.webstock.org.nz/ in upcoming weeks!