Today’s strip was written in conjunction with Monday’s strip, and is part two of a longer story arch that is developing. This is important to point out because I have received no less than five offers of borrowed or loaned computers to put me up in the meantime. In fact I have to say the amount of support being offered up during this technological crisis is nothing short of heartwarming.
And I swear this computer is not based on the one you offered me.
update: for the young’uns.
The sudden and unexpected death of my computer this weekend was, knock on wood, the last insult added to an injury-filled 2008. Late Friday the computer froze up just like in the old days, and I thought nothing of it, restarting to continue developing my new website. Only she never came back up. Ever. The weak sound of the fan and dim, dim light on the front of my iMac G5 (made before you got those fancy iMac G5’s with the built-in iSight) was the only sign of life, like the weak breath and low pulse of a coma patient. The logic board had died, and I was 6 months out of my AppleCare extended warranty, which had served me well in the past. The cost of replacing the logic board, similar in nature to giving our imaginary coma patient a new brain, was said to be $1,100.00, which, despite rumors, I do not have laying around in a pile on my bed.
So the plan — if you could call it that — is to cobble together that amount of scratch and buy a new computer. My iMac was only 3 1/2 years old, too soon by my standards, but it had shown signs of a weak constitution before. The detriment to my freewheeling freelance lifestyle has yet to be fully appreciated, but I’ll wager it’s somewhere in the ‘mildly catastrophic’ area. For now I have begun to migrate to my wife’s computer, an older, slower eMac with less than 1/3 the hard drive and an out-of-date OS that won’t let me install Dreamweaver.
2009 might start off with a pretty tough January, but despite everything I have nothing but hope for a better year ahead.
2008 was a hard, hard year for designers, throughout which I often thought “what is AIGA doing for me?” For an organization devoted to supporting the design profession, as a designer I was not feeling a lot of support. Well this week I saw that Ric Grefe actually answered that very question andÂ had some good advice to give at the proper AIGA site. That article linked me to the aforementioned Shel Perkins story, which I stopped reading after he gave explicit instructions on how to separate an employee’s livelihood from their life. Taking the “live” out of “livelihood” — that’s a joke I should have written into the comic right there.
The STEP Reader’s Choice voting system is a complete and utter atrocity visited against mankind out of a mixture of malice and laziness. If the American electorate were set up in this fashion we all would have elected Mit Romney. I fielded two votes for the 36-Point-related poster (see our sidebar — it’s a sentimental favorite) from two different user accounts. I briefly considered setting up a third, but the pain was too great. The gallery system is overstuffed, completely unorganized, and poorly implemented: you cannot link directly to a piece to promote it; entries shift around in seemingly random fashion so they are next to impossible to track; and with only 20 entries per page and a grand total of 274 entries, it takes 14 pages to view everything, and even then you have to click through to each piece to see it in any detail. So that’s almost 300 clicks if you want to be an informed voter — more if you actually want to vote. I weep for the people on the last few pages to have gotten their letter of acceptance only to be buried at the discretion of the STEP staff under a giant pile of shit UI and 273 other entries. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, if you’re going to create a gallery of design, go all the way, or don’t go at all.
In case you missed it last week, Justin and the fine folks at Rule 29 posted a video account of my travels to their studio on their blog. You’ll want to skip the insane close-ups of my face and general creepiness of the first few seconds and skip to the halfway point where the Intern Quiz begins. Sadly, the very first question, “Name one typeface designed by Adrian FRUTIGER,” went unrecorded, but Intern Craig’s thunderous reply “FUTURA!” might be there for all posterity’s enjoyment. The answer came with all the speed and the passion of a 16-year-old unhooking his first bra, and landed with about as much success.
I’m having a great deal of frustration with the STEP 100 Reader’s Choice gallery and voting system. It is unwieldy, archaic, and blatantly favors those designs on the first page. I plan to conquer it today, and will report my findings soon.
The Reflex Blue Show with Nate Voss and Donovan Beery, Episode 23: Justin Ahrens & Making Creative MatterDecember 18th, 2008 | by Nate Voss
My solo trip to Chicago was punctuated with a trip 1 hour West to visit Justin Ahrens along with the fine fellows and lovely (lovely) ladies of Rule 29. Upon arrival in the frigid cold, I was showered with warmth and companionship, hospitality, and enough booze to drown a small horse. Justin, a frequent fixture of the HOW Conference and no-coast designer extraordinaire, took time away from his Brady-Bunch-happy office family to chat with me and guest-host Mig Reyes. Then, as often happens when I am alone at the controls, I lost the second half of the show, so we finished up via iChat with Donovan back in the saddle this morning to talk about Rule 29’s involvement with Life in Abundance and a few other topics of note. Please enjoy podcast 23 with your own tastey 312 beverage.