New Media Douchebags in Plain English

I thought this was hilarious!

On a related note, I’ve always been slightly confused by the term New Media, especially when someone calls themselves a New Media Designer. I’ve always preferred the title, Multimedia Designer.

The term, New Media, stems from a transitional period when websites, interactive CDs, video games, etc… were actually new, and designers wanted to distinguish those forms of media from traditional forms, primarily print.

My questions is, at what point does something cease to be new? We have generations of people now who have grown up with these technologies. You’d be hard-pressed to find anyone who hasn’t heard of that newfangled trend called, the internet. Should web designers actually be calling themselves New Media Designers, or should that title now be reserved for those developing holodecks, or that gizmo used in Brainstorm?

Designer’s titles aside, I do actually see the profound distinction between content generated by individuals, and content generated by “old media” outlets (Network TV, Radio, Newspapers, etc…). I guess what I’m trying to say is, in 1995 I was a New Media Designer and in 2008 I’m a New Media Douchbag. :)

Google Video Link | via Brian Dusablon

xScope updated to 2.0!

Woohoo! One of my all time favorite tools, xScope, has finally been updated to 2.0. For a long time now I thought they had abandoned it. They’ve introduced lots of great new functionality. You can see screenshots and video on the site, or a complete list of changes on VersionTracker. A new license will run you $26.95. Registered users of 1.x get it for $10. xScope is a must have for anyone who designs on-screen content.

AirMail: Manilla Folder Sleeve for the Macbook Air

Steve Jobs at Macworld

If you watched the Macworld 2008 Keynote, you know that Steve Jobs introduced the Macbook Air, Apple’s super-slim new laptop, by taking it out of a manilla envelope… to illustrate just how thin it really is.

Immediately after watching the keynote, Jona Bechtolt and Claire L. Evans came up with the idea for the perfect sleeve for the new device… the AirMail.

“The AirMail laptop sleeve is handmade out of durable upholstery-grade vinyl, and lined with fuzzy, soft fleece. All AirMail sleeves have the same dimensions as standard interoffice manila envelopes, which will serve to remind you — and everyone around you — that your new MacBook Air really is the thinnest laptop in the world!”

I personally think this is awesome. What began as a simple publicity stunt by Apple, turned into an idea for a clever new product by a couple of industrious quick-thinking people who were willing to run with it. Well done Jona and Clair!

The Airmail is available for pre-order for $29.95. The duo says it will be available by the time your new Macbook Air arrives.

via Cool Hunting

Helvetica: A film about a font

Helvetica documentary film

5 Stars

A while back there was a lot of buzz about a documentary film called, Helvetica. As the name implies, it’s all about a font…

“We use it every day on our computers, we see it on street signs — and we take it for granted. Now, Gary Hustwit’s unique documentary introduces us to Helvetica, whose readability has made it the most popular font in the world. Interviews with designers and artists offer insight into the development, use and universal acceptance of Helvetica as the typeface of choice for everything from writing letters to creating corporate logos.”

I actually didn’t pay a tremendous amount of attention when it first came out. I missed it when it was in theaters. But, when the film became available on Netflix I thought I would give it a shot.

I’m really glad I did. It’s actually an excellent film. As a designer I probably have more interest than most, but I think even non-designers will find Helvetica interesting. I may have to buy this film.