John Maeda is now in the RISD Team

Actually, not just in the RISD team, but leading the Rhode Island School of Design. Even though I never was to MIT, all those years of constantly following his work with the Media Arts and Sciences Department leave me now with a feeling of nostalgia… cute! what can digital information do to a very sane person :)

I hope, and I know, his work will continue to be inspirational and I sure hope one day I get to meet the idea generator man in person.

Muriel Cooper – brilliant mind of the on-screen design

I’ve just read the iht.com article on Muriel Cooper and have discovered a great mind. Never knew where the MIT logo came from and that it was her idea.

She was one of the visionaries that foreseen design as interactive and driven by simplicity. In the 60s when technology was only in its infancy, people tended to see it as a big monster capable of changing social realities but inflexible.

Cooper has reinforced the idea that on-screen design can be better than just linecodes :) …. Almost 40 years after we’ve come to Microsoft surface and Apple’s iPhone. Muriel Cooper sure was right!

One new graphics environment – E15

Four grad researchers Kyle Buza, Luis Blackaller, Takashi Okamoto, and Kate Hollenbach from MIT have presented at FlashForward conference, a new graphics environment called E15. As Maeda says on his blog, E15 attempts to bring together the best of the power intrinsic to the Web, full-performance graphics processing, and a fully interpreted environment with dynamic class loading.

There’s a video on this site, looks amazing if I am imagining the right things. Anybody knows more about this E15 or has some more documentation on it?

Online collaborative projects

That’s what I’ve discovered in the last 30 minutes: three interesting projects all developed at MIT and a designer that helped build one of the websites.

1. Openstudio is more or less a site about artists that draw online. One setback – using Java is kinda limiting your own possibilities of expression. But the concept “OPENSTUDIO is web + art + community + economics.” goes far beyond drawing as it also includes art transactions and possibility for negotiating jobs for the registered artists. Some of the founders Amber Frid-Jimenez, Annie Ding and Burak Arikan.

2. Along with Open I/O, OpenCode, OpenSpace and OpenTag, Openstudio belongs to PLWire at MIT, namely The Physical Language Workshop

PLW kinda puzzled me with one concept: audio tag … now what is that? Some sort of answering machine over the internet? Why tag? I do have to dig a little more to see precisely.

3. What else? A very funky project, haven’t got the time to see it through but the name is puzzling Emma on relationships :D

And 4. the designer Takashi Okamoto in charge of designing the plw site. Same japanese/academic visual minimalism. Worth browsing as the sites abounds in all sorts of visuals so different from what can be seen on Romanian market. Not thoroughly commercial, rather a breath of unconventional fresh air.

Isn’t browsing fun love?

Book on Processing tbl in September 2007

Casey Reas and Ben Fry will release a book on their renewed program Processing at MIT Press this September. I have worked a little bit with Processing, it is really fascinating, point is Romania has no market for it. Or maybe I just haven’t got the insight so far.

The book will turn interesting to designers and developers, I’d like to have one copy when it’s released.