DeSign48 is the online portfolio of work I have done for a number of corporations over my 40-year career in Silicon Valley. It is far from being comprehensive, but contains a representative sample of the types of projects that I have worked on, and the contribution to each that I have made. It has been and continues to be a constant learning process.
This must be at least the tenth time that I have redesigned my website. Many times, I have started a new design, and then never got it finished before a newer approach seemed necessary. This one is in reply to the demand for "responsive" or "flexible" design which can accomodate different screen sizes. I have started and stopped in this endeavor several times. Thanks goes to Matt Kersley
for his handy online tester app. Perhaps this one will get finished.
For the previous laptop version, click here.
I have also used the terms Thetawaves
to differentiate my webdesign from my graphic work, and my corporate work from my creative work.
But I find it harder than ever to keep these in separate categories. As Steve Jobs showed us, fine art blends into graphic design which blends into commercial art and technical illustration and industrial design. Every art school on the planet now teaches digital art and webdesign. More than ever, artists need to be engineers, and vise versa.
The internet, perhaps like no other industry, has incorporated the old with the new. Music, Art, Literature, History - all of the established academic and social disciplines, as well as the Sciences - have come together on the web. The web serves the ancient as well as the nascent. Old "principles" of design have only become more relevant, and the dictum "form follows function" has been resurrected, rejuvenated, and validated.
Every project that I have worked on has been a team effort, from the enormous 2,000-page aerospace projects at Lockheed, to the one-page games at Moblyng, the success of the project has been the result of people working together, doing their best to complete the requirements. No one person can do everything, although the tendency, as in past industries, is for more and more to be done by fewer and fewer engineers. As projects become bigger and more complex, and the demands on each step in the process becomes greater, technical specializations become "stovepiped" - cut off from the rest of the process. More than ever, engineering team members need to be able to communicate with each other. They must understand that each engineer on the team may come from diverse backgrounds and have worked on projects that may be very different from the current one at hand.
Good project management, while aided by progressive software - both social and technical - is still no substitute for person-to-person collaboration. Agile methodologies can also help keep things on track, but also do not DO the engineering. That is still the challenge for the engineers and technicians.
The division of labor in every project is clearly determined by the understanding that the project manager or technical lead has of the development process. Much of the work cannot be done in parallel, but must be done in a certain order, like building a house, you cannot call in the electrician until the framing is done, and none of the work can proceed until the plans are finalized in detail by the architect. To do otherwise would be disastrous and costly.
Many diverse specializations have met on the web. It requires a team of experts merging their disparate skills and technologies to create a state of the art website. They have evolved from one page resumes with text-only capabilities, to robust, media-rich, interactive, online (in the "cloud") applications. Responding to the practical needs of the 21st century, our social lives and economic lives have intertwined more than ever before.
Perhaps software engineers were the most prepared to successfully enter "cyberspace." But the graphic designers, technical typists, illustrators, film and video artists, who had made the transition from drafting table to computer software back in the 1980's, all embraced the web as their own new media.
Business "best practices" have been re-examined as many more become aware of just how "personal" and "business" conjoin. As I have often said, "There is nothing more personal than business." The role of social media has only brought human nature under higher scrutiny and perhaps re-aroused ancient questions of morality and ethics. The internet is nothing if not a reflection of ourselves, for better or worse.