Windows Phone 7

Benjamin W.

October 11, 2010

So, I really want Windows Phone 7 to be awesome. I feel bad even saying that out loud but it’s the best looking, non-iPhone OS I’ve seen. And it may be awesome but…

How can I trust a company to make an amazing, polished, fresh approach to a mobile OS when they put this video in their presskit.

I don’t even know where to begin. This is their big unveiling? There is just nothing sexy or clear about the points Ballmer makes. I have no idea after watching this why I should care about Windows Phone 7. Here are some choice samples:

So the range of things that people will do with these devices… And they are beautiful. Each in it’s own way, exceptionally beautiful. The hardware and the way the software is always delightful across each and everyone of these experiences.

Give me a break. You really think the integration of hardware and software is a battle you should bother fighting at all? And beautiful? I can barely tell the difference between any of these and the only reason I can at all, is that they have the manufacturers logo on the face of every single one. And here’s another classic:

We wanted the Windows Phone to be always delightful for you. Whether you were looking for a place to eat, reading mail, catching up with friends or making a phone call for example.

I think that last one was a jab at the iPhone 4 but I couldn’t tell in the way Ballmer was reading the teleprompter. I just want to feel like Windows Phone 7 stands for something. And right now, I’m feeling really let down.

I wasn’t going to make the switch from my iPhone 4 but then I saw this video and realized, Microsoft does get me. 326 pixels per inch, who fucking cares? Emoticons baby!

via Daring Fireball and Engadget

Violation Report.

Benjamin W.

May 7, 2010

So designworklife posted about Violation Report. It’s a site where you can post pictures of people being discourteous in public. A way to humiliate them. Shame by fame, if you will.

I didn’t find the site very funny. It’s a great idea that should have remained a funny forum thread on some site I never visit. Okay, that was harsh.

But seriously, it’s like flirting with a girl you don’t care about so the one you do care about will care about you. Could we get any further removed from actually getting what we want?

Aside from Violation Report being rude, it’s indirect. It’s a way for us to feel better about our shit day by being completely un-courteous , behind someone’s backs for the entire world to see.

Here’s an idea. The next time someone’s doing an “Alpha-male Stretch”, politely ask them to move! If this person doesn’t immediately say “Sure” and scoot over, you have my blessing to post pictures of him and his kids on whatever public shaming site you want. But if you just sit there stewing in your own self-pity and hating this person for sitting comfortably, you’ve got some serious seat entitlement issues.

Seth Godin: Linchpin Series.

Benjamin W.

April 22, 2010

If you are creative at all in any way, if you’re wondering how in the hell you’re going make a living doing something you love, download and listen to this talk right now.

April Linchpin Session – Seth Godin.

It is something I needed to hear. It’s for anyone who wants what they love and what they do for money to be the same thing. And anyone who wants to change things.

For more on Seth Godin, just google him.

iPad. I want one but until then…

Benjamin W.

April 7, 2010

John Gruber wrote his review of the iPad. It’s really good. It’s extensive but in the right way. Hater or lover, you’ll get a sense of the possibilities and limitations of this beautiful piece of delish.

I’m a little tired of the “closed system” argument although Cory Doctorow’s post is very thought provoking. This device is bringing joy to a lot of people and a ton of inspiration. You may not be able to create apps right on the device or open it up or geek out customizing the core functionality but I have a MacPro and I’ve never written an app and wish I never had to open it up and have opened the Terminal once. I’ve never been more inspired than right now to write code, create, design and help others to do so with my mac, the iPad and the web. It may not give you tools that directly allow tinkering but it gives you a reason to care about tinkering. It doesn’t make tinkering easy, it just makes it worthwhile. At least for me.

So, stop your whining and do something. I know that education about our culture and what it should be is doing something. But education will only change things when those you teach actually build something real. So build something. Use the limitations of the iPad to inspire creativity or use your hatred of closed systems to build something open and better or encourage others to do so. Apple is a company putting out products that they (Steve) love and that others love too. It’s as simple as that.

I don’t wish the iPad was more open. I hope that Steve Jobs and those at Apple, stick to their guns and keep making things the best way they know how. But I want thousands more people to do the same. I’m not in the cult of Mac. I’m in the cult of Make Shit You’re Proud Of. And Apple does that better than anyone. More please.

Don’t see Valentine’s Day!

Benjamin W.

February 17, 2010

If you’ve been fortunate enough to miss the movie Valentine’s Day on Valentine’s Day weekend, Fuck! that makes me hate it even more. Sorry. If you’ve somehow managed to skip this joke of a film, good for you. Clear your mind of any idea that it might be good for you or your loved one. Let it go.

I know all about the chick flick thing. I was made fun of in school for the chick flick thing. The crying. The true love. Hey, I still get teary eyed when the little boy is running through the airport in Love Actually. So, I’ll say it again.

Skip Valentine’s Day. It left me wondering, as I watched it, how this movie was ever made at all. It’s not romantic. It’s not endearing. And you’re lady will hate it too.

A design inspiration blog with a bit more.

Benjamin W.

November 19, 2009

I’m a big fan of design blogs. I have my favorites that I check about every day: Swiss Miss, It’s Nice That, FormFiftyFive. The usual.

But I recently ran into Design Work Life. A blog by New York based design studio, Seamless Creative. (who also has some great work!)

It is rad because they don’t just post great stuff but they also write a bit of info about the studio or designer or concept behind the work. And that is really valuable to a learning designer like myself. Plus, I’ve seen quite a few things on there site that I haven’t seen featured anywhere else. Check it out and tell me what you think.

Read Between The Leading is awesome!

Benjamin W.

October 28, 2009

Letter Case is my one-man design shop. I’m building it as fast as I can. In my continued self-education, podcasts have proven to be really useful because I can pop them on my iPhone and listen away while I drive to lunch, go for a walk, tidy up the room, whatever. And one of my favorites and definitely my favorite podcast on design is…

Read Between the Leading.

Just two young designers who really love design and talk about it. There are great interviews with well known names in the graphic and web design world. Some of my favorites are: Jason Santa Maria, David Airey, Ryan and Don Clark of Invisible Creatures.

Check it out. It’s really good.

Letter Case

Graphic Design & Web Design

Letter Case was my one-man design shop based in Los Angeles, CA.
I ran it for 2 years until I joined Typekit in January 2011.

In my spare time I've been learning to program by building my first web application.
A simple tool called Talkative to help people publish their talks on the web.

My current project is The Briefcase. A blog and podcast.
It's a place for me to create and publish stuff.

If you have any comments, thoughts or questions,
feel free to contact me at: benthomaswelch [at] gmail.com.

Thanks for checking out my blog. Cheers!

Simplicity is harder than it looks.