What Me.dium would look like if I designed it

medium_byisaackeyet.pngI’ve always been kind of confused by the Me.dium (me.dium.com) UI. It is not very intuitional to me, it’s easy to read the text but the lack of anti-aliasing makes it look kind of dull too. It took me almost two weeks of usage to find out that the stuff in the bottom are all tabs, so you can select different ones!

Maybe I’m being overly critical here, Me.dium is an awesome application that will go far. I just hope they can put some more time into making it logical (for first-time users).

I’ve also thought about the simplicity of the medium “world”. The background is genious, but boring, as is the small boxes floating around on it. Again, it’s all needed to be extremely clear just because everything is so small, but cmon. I did a background for the Me.dium sphere to show how it would’ve looked if I designed the thing, it should be to the right of this blog post. Does anyone like it?

“To design when it shouldn’t look like it’s designed”

From working for Intense Debate, I’ve encountered quite a few situations where my design should style something, but just to some extent. Since our comments system should fit nicely to the context it’s contained in, my design is limited to just include basic parts of the system. Like buttons or the user menu. The rest I should style, but only partially, as the master stylesheet should set the basics.

This is often very frustrating.

I can’t design any of the vital parts of the widget, because if I do it might clash with the publicers CSS. And the parts I can style must fit perfectly with ANY kind of design, which means they can’t be too unique or too special. Take the buttons for example: They are white, with a slightly grey gradient and a little shadow. That’s it. To spice them up a little I make them bigger when you hover them, and the text is all uppercase. But that’s it.

I really think it works the way it’s supposed to though, but again, it’s not very inspiring work. I’m longing for when I can design more special/extreme skins.

The people I got to know in TechStars 2007

I just wanted to give my brief viewpoint on the people I’ve met during the summer..

Anthony Dimitre
You’re an awesome designer and most importantly an artist. You’re incredibly creative, able to throw stuff together in no time, and still make it look very professional. You have also a very cool view on life for a guy a little older than myself, which I think is a great thing.

Brady Becker
Very bright guy that got an eye out for almost anything in the space. I didn’t get too meet you that much, but from the little I saw I can tell that you’re capable of great things, as well as being able to move quickly. Which is needed. All in all I think you have a great perspective on life, that I’m not sure I fully grasp or comply with, but that I respect to its full extent.

Arron Kallenberg
What can I say.. Duude. (Maybe a brother?)

David Cohen
I really haven’t been able to talk much to the TechStars granddad. I just know, from what I’ve seen and experienced, that you’re onto something big. I feel like even though we’re very different in age, I can still understand your personality and way of life. I feel like I know you, without actually being sure of anything. I like you for being open-minded about just about anything. I like you for your experience and knowledge in the market. I’m just hoping that we can take it to the next level in the next couple of years.

Theron McCollough
I’m very impressed by you as a person. I like your way of connecting with people, and being able to talk to just about anyone without problems. I like how you give everyone a chance, even if they’re different (from Sweden) or don’t know really know how to handle the situation they’re in. You’re sort of the guy with the flashlight that IS ABLE to lead people to enlightment. Enlightment being making people aware of themselves, and who they are in the context of, say, TechStars. I also envy your skills (*twinkle*).

Brian Dewitt
When you are close to a guy like Brian, you can’t help but feel special. He’s doing his own thing, giving us a show, but in my mind this play he’s pulling off is a reflection of something very pure and unique to him as a person. Brian has alot of benefits, but also, like everyone else some weaknesses. Giving a show covers those parts in a good way, and adds alot to his personality. It also, sometimes feel like a mask he’s putting up, to distract us from the other parts of him. This is not a bad thing, not at all, it’s just different. Brian is very gifted, and kind of modest about it. I really like Brian for his honesty in everything, and for the special show that he pulls off – every second of the day.

Ben Brightwell
Is a very focused guy that is also somewhat sensitive to his surroundings. Ben can both be the guy randomly starting to talk to people as and he who stands in the corner waiting to be approached. The latter rarely happens, and connecting with people seems very natural to him, but he has a komplex personality, and just wants one part to shine through at the same time. I feel like I didn’t get to know all of you, just some parts. Perhaps the TechStars parts? Or maybe you’re just that focused.

The rest, sadly, I didn’t get to know that well. I really wish to do so in the future though. And please don’t cap me if I didn’t spell your names right, I didn’t look them up so I hope they’re right… Cheers mates, we’ll all keep in touch.

Investor day, it’s over

This was a big day in my life. I’m having a hard time believing that we’re actually done now. TechStars is “over”, and the last thing is a party at Davids house tomorrow night.. But that’s everything left. I’ve made a lot of good connections with the other founders during the summer, and have gotten to meet most of the amazing mentors they had lined up for us. It has been amazing. I’m just grateful that I’ve been given the opportunity to participate in such a program in the first place, so I’d like to personally thank David Cohen, and whoever that was involved in getting Intense Debate in TechStars. It’s been amazing. Thanks.

Investor day itself went pretty well too. The presentation went really well, no noticable hickups whatsoever, and people responded well to our product and overall idea. People seem to think that there’s definately an interesting concept that we’re trying to pull off, but not everyone seems to be sure that there’s a market for us out there. All in all though, mostly good feedback.

The other teams were really great too. I was especially impressed by Villij’s and brightkite’s presentations. They both had improved so much from when I saw them last time that I was blown away by their performances today. There were alot of interesting people in the audience too, and word is that there’s never been a VC, angels and media gathering like this ever before in Boulder. Which is, of course, good for us. It’s just fun realizing that there are actually influental people out there that really believe in what we do. Maybe that’s a personal thing, because I’m having a hard time seeing what value I bring to the table for the most time. Good is not good enough. But I was kind of surprised, and happy with the input we got.

Afterwards we all went to The Kitchen, just like planned, and had a great time. I’m not much for shouting at people in bars trying to pursue something, but tonight was great. Just getting together with the other founders before I leave over a drink was awesome. (Although I didn’t drink anything alcoholic tonight, sadly…) We’re in talks with an investment firm (that I probably should keep secret right now), but I can tell that it’s going well. We’re past the first point – we have our second meeting.

Boulder Creek

boulder_creek2.JPGI found an open wireless connection going home from my little shopping spree. It looks like there’s a thunderstorm coming, which is nice because clouds mean that it’s a little cooler than usual. As a matter of fact I can hear thunder right now, I should leave soon.

The Boulder Creek still amazes me, it’s so peaceful, even though the biking track next to it always have heavy traffic. I’d really love to live here, and have a bike that I could commute with. Somewhere.. Over the rainbow. (Meaning in a future life utopia.)

Yay.

Testing the new Apple keyboard

keyboard-side.jpg

I really love it. The new, slim keyboard from Apple is truly amazing. Slimmer than even logitech nuevo (spelling?), or at least it feels like it. And you don’t slip off of the keys, like you do on the macbook pros and the old keyboards. The texture of the keys prohibit this.

One thing is a little odd at first, and it’s the space between the keys. As I own a macbook I’m kind of used to it, but it’s definately a different feeling… On the good side, it’s harder to hit the wrong key now.

It’s only $49 too, thinking of buying one.. My old logitech certainly needs a replacement. I like how they have miniatures of the dashboard and expose on the actual keys… I had a lot of trouble figuring out which was which when I started out using my macbook, so I think it’s good for a first-time user.

Dress Rehearsal

It all went well, surprisingly. Jon was really good at presenting our stuff, and even though we had some technical inconsistencies it all went really well. We’ll probably have to change something on the product to make it stand out more during the demo, as the projector’s colors are all off. Minor change, but it sucks to realize it at this stage. As told before we really have enough to do these days… I still need to buy the suitcase for one.

On a sidenote I’m very thirsty. I certainly hope that we won’t be here all day, or else I will die from dehydration.

Right now Matt from Socialthing! is presenting. For the second time actually, the first take was really tense, so David Cohen had him have another go again. This time it’s much better, but the audience is still not excited from what Socialthing! does, which you actually were during the rehearsals prior to today. It’s remarkable what difference a large hall, some new technical equipment and an early morning does to your performance!

The day before the day before the day (iDay)

Yes, here we are, sitting in Atlas100 at the campus. We’re up 9.40 sharp. I’ve just started to realize how close to the end we are. The cool part is that I’m not nervous at all, and I don’t think I will be come iDay either. Honestly. I’m trying to take it as easy as possible, just preparing myself for one day of continous speaking, interventions and hopefully also one or two meetings with influencal people. It’ll definately be interesting.

Atlas100 is not that big of an auditory, but I can easily see the over 150 relaxing in those comfortable chairs.