Musings: Fighting Perfectionism

Wonderfully freeing thoughts on fighting perfectionism by Elizabeth Grace Saunders at 99U:

“To not do anything because it can’t be exactly how you imagined in your head on the first run will hinder you immensely.”

Musings: Pretend to Know What You’re Doing

“Pretending you know what you’re doing is almost the same as knowing what you are doing, so just accept that you know what you’re doing even if you don’t and do it.”

—Bre Pettis and Kyo Stark, Cult of Done Manifesto

Musings: For Love Or Money?

Wonderful, inspirational thoughts from Neil Gaiman, addressing students at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia:

“Nothing I did where the only reason for doing it was the money was ever worth it, except as bitter experience. Usually I didn’t wind up getting the money, either. The things I did because I was excited, and wanted to see them exist in reality have never let me down, and I’ve never regretted the time I spent on any of them.”

Musings: Eames And Ignorance

Great thoughts on how ignorance and genius collided in the work of Charles and Ray Eames. The quote comes from the wonderful documentary, “The Architect and the Painter”:

“Sell your expertise and you have a limited repertoire. Sell your ignorance and you have an unlimited repertoire. He was selling his ignorance and his desire to learn about a subject. The journey of not knowing to knowing was his work.”

- Richard Saul Wurman on Charles Eames

Musings: The Successful Logo

Our short musings on design, branding, business, and the human condition.

“Well-designed logos are the work of the designers. Successful logos imply the company’s use of the logo.”

-Per Mollerup, quoted in Steve Heller’s interview at The Atlantic.

Musings: Remembering As Thinking

Our short musings on design, branding, business and the human condition.

“The art of remembering is the art of thinking.”

-William James, 1892

May 2 2013



Musings: Hard Things Aren’t Always Bad

Our short musings on design, branding, business and the human condition.

“Tools that make hard things easy can make us less likely to tolerate things that are hard.”

-Clive Thompson, in his Wired article on automotive automation

Personally, I long for a future with self-driving cars, but Thompson makes some great points in his article.  More important is the above sentence, which sums up a paradoxical challenge of modern life. In a society where we’re much less worried about subsistence and survival, concerns of comfort rise to the top. Unfortunately, in the quest for ease and luxury, trying to find ways to do less can have an overall negative effect on our ability to do things that are still difficult.

Striving, working hard, taking the road less traveled — whichever turn of phrase you prefer, it seems there is still a lot of value in embracing the hard things of life. “The hard” is often more satisfying, growth-inducing, and life-changing.

Musings: Our Polar World

Our short musings on design, branding, business and the human condition.

Why it is that we can’t seem to allow gray concepts, nuances, or middle grounds these days — whether it’s in politics, headlines, or cultural battles? Is it because choosing an extreme is easier and faster? Or owing to the fact that our mostly-electronic communication doesn’t handle shades of meaning, subtlety, or nuance well?

I’d like to call for a return to degrees of agreement, which is much easier to find when we don’t think of our positions as islands, but instead, as steps along a wider road where everyone is also walking.

Mar 13 2013



Musings: The Impressive Difference

Our short musings on design, branding, business and the human condition.

What’s the difference between trying hard to impress someone, and just being plain impressive?

The first allows a lack of confidence to push you into action, even if it’s unwise or hastily-planned. The second is just a state of being, allowing some internal strength, competence, or other compelling quality to shine. The harder you’re trying, the less impressive it will probably seem.

Feb 11 2013

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Musings: Doing Something About It

Our short musings on design, branding, business and the human condition.

Super inspiring thoughts from Nolan Bushnell, founder of Atari and father of the video game industry:

Hexanine: Nolan Bushnell Quote