Summer is here: the work-related reading in my suitcase alongside the latest Jack Reacher barnstormer is…
Don’t make me think: a common sense guide to web usability by Steve Krug
An idiot’s guide to web usability. It’s full of practical advice and written with in an engaging style with lots of visual examples. Although this edition was published in 2005 the fundamental principles still apply. The advice on having a clear visual hierarchy was immediately useful to me advising clients on their online display advertising and homepage takeover strategies. You can pick up a second-hand copy for a pound on Amazon. Give it a go: I can see it being an invaluable library resource for our team.
The age of earthquakes: a guide to the extreme present by Douglas Coupland, Shumon Basar and Hans Ulrich Obrist
This one’s a bit left field. Combining the zeitgeist-capturing brainpower of Coupland (Author of Generation X) with the skills of curator Obrist and editor Basar it’s as much an experiment in print publishing as a handbook for the digital age.
Their thesis is that the internet has changed us: how we absorb information and lay down the long-term memories which are the essence of our selves, our identities. It has also changed our world: with much of daily human activity taken up creating and exchanging information. Unintended consequences abound – our changing perceptions of time and how patient we feel; the structure of the economy; even the structure of the planet as ice caps begin to melt as a result of significant additional energy consumption.
Despite being a bit of a mind-melter you can read it in an hour. Marshall McLuhan would have loved its ideas and buzzwords. Aclassification, anyone?