I was invited to talk about the Artefact Cards at UXCafe in London a couple of weeks ago – it’s perfect the most precise and concise I’ve been in describing the Artefact Cards, which is a very good thing I think. Thanks to Laurence McCahill from UXCafe for the invitation, and the guys from Think Tall Films who made the film.
I received my Artist’s proof of CONTAINER last week, the exploration of what form might look for the future of magazines curated, produced and edited by Tim Milne from ARTOMATIC.
I was delighted to be in the company of fellow contributors Accept & Proceed, James Bridle, Daniel Eatock, Malcolm Garrett, David Hieatt, Leila Johnson, Mother, Rebecca & Mike, Nic Roope & Violetta Boxhill.
Now, I’d been saying to Tim (for about two months) that I’d write a wee blog post about my contribution. But I haven’t. Instead, I’ve done a wee unboxing video. What was surprising to me was that even though I was part of the project, and knew roughly about everything else that was going in, how much more it made me think unpacking and holding everything for the first time.
(you can get CONTAINER here btw)
PS – there are undoubtedly people buying this who consider themselves ‘collectors’ of things… hoping that the early stage things they buy go up in value. I think though we’re going to use ALL of the things at home somehow; I’ll post up what we do with each item perhaps.
People will always game the system. But if your system is small, fragmented and piecemeal, it should be fairly easy to change the game. A new stamp costs very little. But it also gives Small Batch a real thing to talk about.
Just stumbled across this – a map that’s probably based on the same software platform as Tuneglue, called ‘powershop’ apparently – in John Maeda’s TED talk on Leadership from last year:
He talks about the importance in Leadership in finding connections between two things (and specifically groups, people and the like) which aren’t immediately obvious. It’s worth watching the whole thing to see the full explanation:
I’ve returned to the Smithery forge after a wee break which culminated in talking at the first Folksy Summer School.
Full talk (slides plus audio) to follow soon, but I’ve also been playing around with the new camera (a fantastic Panasonic Lumix LX7 – perfect for carrying around if you don’t want a full-on DSLR). It’s for capturing a project which I’ll talk about another day.
In the meantime though, here’s some slowed down footage of the bonfire we made on the Saturday night at Folksy….
It’s like Michael Bay meets Baden Powell; slow motion footage of firey shit and that. Thanks to Anne Hollowday for the inspiration on experimenting with it.
On Sunday, Smithery will be two years old.
I didn’t exactly make a massive deal of Year One, and won’t do much more than that for Year Two. The plan from the start has been to run Smithery, by myself, for three years. Then I decide whether it’s something I want to scale, something I want to continue as is, or something I want to give up to do something else.
So far, it’s either one or two, and definitely not three. Perhaps working with Fraser across the summer has even made me consider one more seriously. We’ll see. One year to go until decision time.
As always, a huge thank you to the friends, family, partners and clients who’ve believed, and continue to support Smithery. You know who you are.
The overall ‘Smithery’ idea, of making things that people want using the raw materials of the age, continues to be a very useful metaphor for the work.
Smithery is even handily defined when you Google the word as “the work of or goods made by a smith”, which very neatly refers back to the way I’ve set Smithery up to work with other folks’ products and services, and the things I’ve been setting out to make in-house.
This week, there’s been more good news on that sort of thing – the Artefact Cards app is now featured in the Productivity section of the App store, which is a nice vindication to have of the idea:
Finally, earlier today, Nick Jones tweeted me a page from a book he’s reading, another thing to reinforce the Smithery metaphor…
…I might just start breaking things out like that on invoices.
Here’s to Year Three, and Knowing How.
- Massive Congratulations Mister. You're doing a stellar job and ... by tina @ colourliving
- Congratulations fellar, I'm enjoying keeping up with your ... by mikelaurie
- Lovely little post. Happy 2nd Smithery anniversary! It's very ... by anjali28
- @willsh Happy Birthday. Must have that beer some time. by stevexoh
- @willsh Congrats! Keep inspiring us… by Nishad
We had the first Artefact meetup last week, which was great fun. More on that over here. But there will be more, that’s for sure. Thanks to Helen & Mel at BBH for hosting, and the guys over at Carlsberg in Copenhagen for being the beer sponsors (and sending us some fine craft beer from the Jacobsen microbrewery).
At the end of the evening, Adam mentioned that he’d heard someone describe the app as “Minimum Viable Presentation”. Which I think is brilliant. I just wish I knew who it was who’d said it.
Anyway, get your MVP tool for iPhone over here, if you haven’t already – https://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/artefact/id646124665?mt=8
And if you have it already, do be a dear and write us a review of it
- Ah-ha! Yet another moment of inspiration, eh chap? You're on ... by john v willshire
- Fun meet up. Do host a second one, maybe in the autumn. Would ... by tina
- Was me! by VanillaGrrrilla
Yes, it’s been a little quiet on the blog of late – but with good reason.
One of the things I’d picked up a lot when talking to users, or using the cards myself, is that there wasn’t an easy way to get the cards off the table or down from the wall, and into a computer or phone and sent to someone as a digital file of some form.
That’s the problem we set out to tackle, and I’m so so pleased with the result -it’s free to download and have a play with, with the advanced features being the very modest price of £2.49.
It’s not just for using with Artefact Cards, clearly – it works brilliantly for any sort of working practice where you’re surrounded by piles of sticky-notes and flipcharts that need capturing. Snap ‘em, order ‘em, and export as a presentation, PDF, or just the pictures.
It’s already been featured in the likes of PSFK, which is very nice. If you know anyone else who might want to feature it, just send ‘em my way.
Finally a wee postscript; working on it over the past few months with Adam (build) & Darrell (design & UI) who’re on opposite sides of the pond has been a brilliant, brilliant experience. Basically because they’re both awesome people with a fondness for tea. And very, very good at what they do. Thank you, gents.
And you should see what we’re planning next for it…
Ta-ta then, happy playing.
What, you’re still here?
GO PLAY WITH THE APP ALREADY…
john v willshire | July 14, 2013
I’m delighted to announce that we’re holding the first Artefact Cards Meetup in London on Wednesday 24th July, from 5pm onwards.
It’ll be at BBH on Kingly Street, Soho, and you can get one of the free) tickets for it here:
Why a meetup?
I thought given the Artefact Cards were now a year old, it’d be nice to bring together some users, so they can share ideas and thoughts on what makes them work.
Yet that seemed a little… tame as an idea. Nice to do, but I thought it could be a much more valuable and interesting experience for everyone.
Over the last year, I’ve also wanted to get under the skin of some of the projects I’ve seen using them (through people blogging, tweeting, photographing them etc); I’ve said before that whereas I started off seeing the Artefact Cards through only the lens of the work I did, a years worth of talking to people has given me the chance to see what a wide variety of ‘knowledge’ work looks like through the lens of the Artefact Cards.
With that in mind, I want to use the meetups as opportunities to find out from the creators more about some of the amazing projects that’ve been using the cards somewhere in their formulation.
Tom & Duncan’s talk will be later on in the evening (6:30 or so), so from 5pm onwards there will be various wee ‘ show & tell’ things too, and of course some refreshments too.
I hope to see you there: http://artefactcards01.eventbrite.co.uk/