Not The Future I Imagined
I’ve gone through phases like this before. I’ll hate all social networks, i’ll say i’m going to delete myself from them. I don’t. I go back to using them 24/7. I had a brief hiatus (about a month) from Facebook earlier in the year during which had virtually no impact on my life. It didn’t matter if I was on Facebook or not. I went back to Facebook and have been obsessively using it since then (and as I have the previous 4 years).
I say obsessively using, what I really mean is logging in or opening the app, scrolling through for a few seconds and closing it again. I did this several times an hour. For no reason whatsoever. I rarely liked anything, I never commented on anything, I never, ever, posted anything. I was a fly on the wall, watching everyone else. It didn’t add anything to my life and so I figured it wouldn’t miss it if it was gone completely. Well almost completely. I’ll see how I go.
Yes i’ve done this before with bebo back in the day, but this is different. Facebook is relentless in its quest to know everything about us, be the only way we interact with anyone, be omnipresent in our lives.
And i’m a private person.
If you’ve seen my twitter you probably don’t agree. But I never post anything personal on twitter because there is no obligation to. No pressure to. Facebook is inherently personal. And whilst i’m sure most people genuinely think everyone has to see a million pictures of their new baby or new car or them being sick out a window, I don’t. My holiday pics are for family and close friends, which I can show in person. The only person who needs to know what i’m having for dinner is me. Because i’m eating it.
I was the first of my friends to get Facebook back in 2008 because I knew it was the future. It just didn’t turn out to be the future I wanted.
Well i’ve deactivated Facebook, deleted it from all my devices, and cleared my browser history. Let’s see how this goes.
I’ve created a new blog to attempt to force myself into being more professional and engaging with the rest of the design world. So if youre interested in design like me then come follow! (I can’t guarantee it’ll be any good but we’ll see where it goes)
Too Much of a Good Thing?
All the recent rumours of Jonathan Ive’s new iOS has got me thinking. I can’t decide if having the same person design the hardware and the software is a good thing. In one sense the hardware and software will undoubtedly interact with each other in possibly an even more seamless way than Apple has previously had them (if that’s even possible). Ive has (as far as I’m aware), only ever designed hardware so it unclear his understanding of GUI’s and way people interact with software, which is completely different from interacting with hardware. Ive will be used to things like the tactility of the materials used, their weight, their durability, their colour. Designing software there is nothing to physically feel, no physical dimension to keep within, it’s an unlimited space to create. It’s all about looks and nothing else. The emotion that look elicits in the user. And that’s harder to achieve. Brushed aluminium can feel upmarket and expensive, but now do you convey that when there is nothing to physically hold? It has to be done on looks only. It’s well documented that Ive was a hater of skeumorphism so it’s wise to presume that it will be all but gone come the autumn, but how to create a premium feel with something that doesn’t look like anything in the real world? That’s a challenge I hope Ive is up to.
It also somewhat feels like Apple is almost pushing Ive into the shoes of Steve Jobs’ and his totalitarian control of Apple, which isn’t necessarily a good thing. Yes, Jonathan Ive is without doubt one of the top industrial designers in the world right now but he’s no Steve Jobs in other respects (charisma, business mind, negotiator come to mind). If Ive can pull off an amazing and loved transformation of iOS this summer he might just allow Apple to keep up with the competition because just now, they’re definitely behind.
Steve Jobs famously said that when the iPhone was unveiled in 2007 that it was ‘5 years ahead of the competitors’. Well it’s been 6 years and Apple has pretty much stood still and the competitors have caught up, and in many respects, passed Apple. This year and the next will be key to Apple’s survival at the top.