All posts filed under: Divergent Minds

DM #12: Mind Expanding

I have an artwork up in that tree. This week Frank and I discuss our recent visit to Wellington, New Zealand, for the Lux Symposium and Light Art Festival. We talk about how much fun you can have connecting with new people and how sharing your process (warts and all) helps to build real connections. We touch on how difficult it can be to get used to the ‘spotlight’ (and a clever tip for how to sidestep that very problem) as well as striking the right balance between underselling and over hyping. We’re all trying to reach different goals and it’s easy to feel like you’ve made tiny progress. Getting together and sharing your experience can be a real catalyst in helping you celebrate the small steps you’ve made.
Get out there and share your story!

DM #11: The Ennui of Standing

I’ve got 99 problems, but a smart fridge ain’t one. This week we tackle empathy, a core part of understanding one another. We discuss the way that design can be an expression of empathy, understanding through experience and designing new affordances to help solve real problems. Let’s get beyond short term, quarterly business thinking, the kind that creates alientating experiences for people. Rather, put the effort into learning what someones’ underlying pain really is, and create new things to overcome that. It’s not just about mugs and chairs, but it is definitely about helping others carrying difficult loads.

DM #10: In the Midst of A Data Slam

This week on Divergent Minds we’re going to be doing things a little differently. This week we’ll be going behind the scenes at a Data Slam. Now some of you may have heard of things like Hack Days or hackathons, events that bring together people from different backgrounds to create something new in a short space of time. They’re essentially creative events, designed to create new projects that solve common or shared problems. The Data Slam very much follows this model, but with a slight twist. But what really sets this event apart is the focus of the data slam. Bringing people together to tackle the challenge of communicating sustainability via the arts. The Data Slam was the brainchild of Jodi Newcombe, the director of Carbon Arts. The Data slam was supported by the City of Sydney, was housed in the incredible Object Gallery and was facilitated by none other than Usman Haque, creator of the wildly successful Pachube platform (now known as Xively).

DM #9: A Planned Uncertainty

Getting your project out of the building. This week Frank and Jason discuss the launch of their latest artwork, Morhphic Mirror. Created for Vivid by ourselves and Liam Ryan, we talk about the transition that happens when you put your project in the hands of thousands of people. Shipping, launching, ‘finishing’ and the like. We talk about why you would put yourself through something like that, why it’s so much fun and engaging to watch people play with your artwork, how the breadth of response really makes such a difference. We touch on the unknown quantities with launching, of making tweaks once you’ve launched and everything else that happens in that incredible moment of transition.

Go on, get your projects out there and into other peoples hands. What are you waiting for?

DM #8: Keep Pointing to the Possible

You can’t have leadership without connection. This week we discuss how to align people to shared goals, big or small, we talk about historical examples of explorers who were mapping new territory and leading the way to a new future. We talk about the golden age of technological capability (right now) and the difference between designing an object and designing a process. On todays journey we touch on the value and price of trust, the power of uniting people behind your ideas and how to truly lead in the connection economy.

DM #7: Domesticate Failure

Even coke isn’t for everyone. This week we tackle a listener-chosen topic, the fear of failure. What creates a culture of fear, how to diagnose fear of failure in your own life habits and how to overcome it. We talk about how to create a structure around your goals and stop setting yourself up to fail. By embracing failure we can create clear boundaries, define what ‘good enough’ means and break through the barriers to your success.

DM #6: You’re not designing for yourself

When to know you need feedback. Trying to solve a new problem? Looking to improve your business but don’t know how? How do you know what you ought to be doing? What information do you need in order to make your decisions better? Feedback is critical to increase your ability to make the right decision, to avoid wasting time, attention and effort and to maximise your efforts in bringing your ideas to life. This week we tackle feedback, when to give it, when to look for it and how you can use feedback productively.

DM #5: Exploring with a Drawing

The way designers draw. Drawing is a fundamental part of any design communication, a way of showing connections between ideas and taking someone else on a journey via colour, shape and form. This week Frank and Jason delve into the fuzzy world of sketching ideas to solve problems, communicate emotions or seal the deal at the company picnic. We discuss the way that drawings can be a form of super rapid prototyping, helping people collaborate and understand fuzzy ideas through paper, squiggly lines and more.

DM #3: Productive dissonance

A kamikaze approach to the market. This week Frank and Jason discuss scoping new projects, Franks efforts to help create a new artwork for the 2013 Vivid Sydney festival, the reasons why we’re doing this podcast and what it’s like to have a hidden inertia pushing you to leave a trail of concepts in your wake.

DM #2: Say no to a thousand things

Constant Pitch. This week Frank and Jason talk about time management, get sucked down a productivity software rabbit-hole and discuss a new public artwork we’re creating for the 2013 Vivid Sydney art festival. Along the way we discuss our design process, concept development and tools used to shift from idea to reality. Questions posed: What’s your artistic vision? Can you achieve what you would like to achieve? How do you mask out the things that aren’t important?