Digital Design = Form or Function?

At its best design delivers both form and function. If you have to choose form OR function, I’d take function any day. Design without function is art, which is lovely in a museum or plaza or Burning Man (below), but for businesses wanting to use technology for a purpose, it had better be design and not art.

wpid burning man 2010 art design form function 2013 02 15 08 44 Digital Design = Form or Function?

It’s no surprise to people familiar with Astek that we enter the design discussion from the function side of the equation. That doesn’t mean we don’t have deep-rooted brand considerations and design aesthetics. Indeed, these factors inform everything we do for our clients and ourselves. But we start every discussion by asking questions about the function. Who is going to use it? How will they use it? Why? What is the brand promise this experience must deliver? Read more »

4 Reasons Not to Hate Apple for New iOS6 Maps App

It won’t surprise anyone who knows me that I have a bias for the Apple ecosystem over Google. When I hear people complaining about the new Apple Maps app, I find myself asking why people are so upset with Apple over this.

Consider the following:

1) While it’s true that Apple made the original iPhone Maps app that was powered by Google maps, Google has provided no intentions to release a stand-alone Google Maps app like the stand-alone YouTube app. Rather than make users happy by launching a stand-alone app, Google’s Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt prefers to make foolhardy statements like, “We think it would have been better if they had kept ours. But what do I know?” Speculations have surfaced that Google is working on a stand-alone iOS maps app, but not anytime soon, so we’ll have to wait and see.

If it had been possible or easy for Apple to incorporate Google Maps features like turn-by-turn directions that gave the Android maps app a boost in popularity, I imagine they would have.

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Messages app for iMessage on your Mac

messages title Messages app for iMessage on your Mac

This may be old news for some (i.e. 2 months old), but I came across it just recently.  I have been enjoying the new iMessage functionality on my iPhone since it came out last fall.  Integrated into the existing Messages SMS/MMS app, it provides a more fluid, chat-like experience, although only to other iOS devices.  One of the features allows you to leave a conversation on one device, your iPhone for example, and pick it up on another, such as your iPad.

Since I only have an iPhone, that doesn’t really help me much.  But I do happen to message primarily with other iOS users, and spend a lot of time on my Mac, so I would love to be able to cross conversations between there and my iPhone.

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