Updates from March, 2015 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • araskazemi 06:27 on March 24, 2015 Permalink | Reply
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    Hadoop Use Case: Auto Insurance Pricing Based on Driver Behavior 

    I found this article interesting: Hadoop Use Case: Auto Insurance Pricing Based on Driver Behavior – via feedly promoted sandbox

    Link to article: Hadoop Use Case: Auto Insurance Pricing Based on Driver Behavior

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  • araskazemi 13:25 on March 23, 2015 Permalink | Reply
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    Performing better at work? You’re probably using Chrome or Firefox 

    I found this article interesting: Performing better at work? You’re probably using Chrome or Firefox – via Digital Trends

    Your choice in Internet browsers apparently says a lot about how well you’re doing at work. That’s the conclusion of a study conducted by recruitment and retention software maker Cornerstone OnDemand, which found that sales and customer-service employees who use non-default Web browsers stay longer at their jobs and perform better than their more conventional coworkers.

    In an analysis of data from 50,000 applicants who took its online job assessment test, researchers at Cornerstone found that people with a preference for third-party browsers like Chrome and Firefox had higher rates of job efficiency and retention than candidates who stuck with default browsers (i.e., Internet Explorer and Safari).

    Related: Which browser is best for you?

    Chief Analytics Officer Michael Housman offered an explanation for the results in an interview with Freakonomics Radio“I think that the fact that you took the time to install Firefox on your computer shows us something about you. It shows that you’re someone who is an informed consumer,” he said. “You’ve made an active choice to do something that wasn’t default.”

    Even though it may be useful, Cornerstone says data like browser preference would be too intrusive to consider in weeding out would-be employees. The company instead relies on more obvious patterns when advising its clients on making hiring decisions, like the presence of the word “boozy” in e-mail addresses. Regardless of their browser choice, people with unprofessional email addresses probably aren’t the most appealing candidates.

    Your browser of choice may not be under scrutiny, but still, considering the many advantages of Chrome, Firefox, and others over languishing alternatives, switching might not be such a bad idea anyway.

    Link to article: Performing better at work? You’re probably using Chrome or Firefox

     
  • araskazemi 23:03 on March 20, 2015 Permalink | Reply
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    It-konsultbolag toppar listan över populäraste arbetsplatserna 

    I found this article interesting: It-konsultbolag toppar listan över populäraste arbetsplatserna – via Hetaste IT-nyheterna från IDG.se

    It-konsultbolag toppar två kategorier när Great Place to Work Institute presenterar sin årliga lista över Sveriges bästa arbetsplatser.

    Link to article: It-konsultbolag toppar listan över populäraste arbetsplatserna

     
  • araskazemi 23:03 on March 20, 2015 Permalink | Reply
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    Tidiga skolmorgnar en fara för hälsan 

    I found this article interesting: Tidiga skolmorgnar en fara för hälsan – via SvD – Opinion
    En lång rad undersökningar ger vid handen att en senareläggning av skolans starttider vore gynnsamt. Tidiga skolmorgnar inte bara försämrar studiekapaciteten hos en stor ­andel elever i de övre tonåren ­utan utgör också ett direkt och allvarligt hot mot deras hälsa, skriver fem forskare.

    Link to article: Tidiga skolmorgnar en fara för hälsan

     
  • araskazemi 21:28 on March 19, 2015 Permalink | Reply
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    Convincing Skeptical Employees to Adopt New Technology 

    I found this article interesting: Convincing Skeptical Employees to Adopt New Technology – via HBR.org

    Use both the carrot and the stick.

    Link to article: Convincing Skeptical Employees to Adopt New Technology

     
  • araskazemi 07:40 on March 17, 2015 Permalink | Reply
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    Accenture Research Finds Listening More Difficult in Today’s Digital Workplace 

    I found this article interesting: Accenture Research Finds Listening More Difficult in Today’s Digital Workplace – via Accenture Newsroom: News
    NEW YORK; Feb. 26, 2015 – New research from Accenture reports that while nearly all (96 percent)global professionals consider themselves to be good listeners, the vast majority (98 percent) spend part of their workday multitasking. In fact, almost two-thirds (64 percent) say that listening has become significantly more difficult in today’s digital workplace. 
     

    Link to article: Accenture Research Finds Listening More Difficult in Today’s Digital Workplace

     
  • araskazemi 08:02 on March 10, 2015 Permalink | Reply
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    Vad finns det för likheter mellan grunge och it-företag? 

    I found this article interesting: Vad finns det för likheter mellan grunge och it-företag? – via Hetaste IT-nyheterna från IDG.se

    Kan det finnas någon koppling mellan Amazon och grungebandet Nirvana förutom att båda kommer från Seattle? Det är klart att det kan! Och det finns fler exempel på samband mellan it och rock från Seattle-området.

    Link to article: Vad finns det för likheter mellan grunge och it-företag?

     
  • araskazemi 08:02 on March 10, 2015 Permalink | Reply
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    Stor trojanattack mot landstinget – hundratals anställda hemskickade 

    I found this article interesting: Stor trojanattack mot landstinget – hundratals anställda hemskickade – via Hetaste IT-nyheterna från IDG.se

    Hundratals anställda har fått lämna in sina datorer och stanna hemma från jobbet efter att ett gisslanprogram lamslagit delar av hälso- och sjukvårdsförvaltningen i Stockholms läns landsting.

    Link to article: Stor trojanattack mot landstinget – hundratals anställda hemskickade

     
  • araskazemi 07:45 on March 4, 2015 Permalink | Reply
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    Stop Designing So Much 

    I found this article interesting: Stop Designing So Much – via ZURB

    Designers have an urge, an aching, for creating something unique. Whether we’re following current trends or bringing back the well-forgotten past, we’re trying to outdo ourselves or each other, to combine elements just so, hoping to make our peers [secretly] wish they’d thought of that design solution. And sometimes, our search for that design epiphany can send us on a goose chase for frivolous, unnecessary visual elements and interactions, which leave our work muddled and confused.

    Busy, complex design can be quite brilliant too. Being able to balance a ton of seemingly unrelated elements is an art in itself. And it’s really hard to pull off! Although, is it harder to conduct an entire string orchestra or produce a violin solo that breaks someone’s heart?

    It’s the question that designers must have been contemplating since — well ‘ always. And it appears that in any design medium, the design often starts out quite simple, goes rather overboard, and is then streamlined over time. You can witness this evolution in almost any longstanding brand’s logo design, in our favorite devices, even our home furnishings.

    When is It Overdesigned?

    busy interior design

    The mark of a great designer is restraint. It’s working within the constraints of goals, technology and time. It’s knowing when to stop ”tweaking" that layout or workflow, to have the guts to let work out into the world, to observe and gather ammunition for the next iteration.

    Frankly, it often comes from practice. It’s the experience of taking design work to the brink of being overwrought a few times, learning to recognize it, and learning to edit away. And it’s realizing that by constraining the problem to just a few variables, you’re able to create magic — something timeless, so simply obvious.

    Early web products were quite busy, compared to the streamlined web of today. And it makes sense — those early web designers were trying to move people from their physical environments to digital ones. The easiest way to do something like that is to give people a sense of familiarity. And it worked. The scrapbook-look got a whole lot of people reading blogs. A bookcase inspired the early iBooks design. And can we forget the countless incarnations of the coffee-cup stain?

    It’s safe to say that we got past the overly-skeuomorphic design. The design community has been editing. Overdesigning is now considered one of the cardinal sins of design, the top one. And looking at other industries, many beautiful products today are quite minimal — just a handful of design threads that hold an interface, a brand, together.

    A Case Study in Editing

    cluttered design

    Since joining ZURB three years ago, it’s been my personal mission to identify unifying branding patterns in our growing business. In 2012 we made our first push at unifying our email newsletters. At the time we didn’t have a lot of unity between our various properties, so we weren’t sure we could even pull off a unified look for our emails.

    It wasn’t just a design exercise — it rarely is, nor should it be. We realized that creating unity in our communications, we would give our customers a greater sense of stability and confidence in ZURB. Show them that no matter which property they visit, or whom in the company they talk to, they can expect an equally high regard for their needs and a high level of execution.

    That first batch of emails went through many iterations. As we worked through the purpose of each email, we were also looking for repeatable patterns and similarities between them. And we found them. After a few weeks of shuffling, defining, and refining, we ended up with a solid set of templates, email rules to live by:

    1. Consistent messaging structure
    2. One core color, tied to its parent site
    3. Unified typography styles
    4. Unified image sizes

    We weren’t able to reconcile differentiating or unifying our corporate communications versus our in-app messages. Our product emails had a slightly different layout, though the above "rules" were still in effect.

    ZURB News (right) was the base for our newsletters, with card-like content blocks, while our product notifications (left) were more utilitarian.

    We lived with these templates for about two years. Meanwhile, we continued growing our business and refining our brand. During that time we expanded Foundation, launched University and its Library, and refreshed our corporate site a few times.

    We have been editing along the way, too. Instead of taking each property into its own design direction, we keep reeling them back to the core of our brand guidelines — the top three that had survived all the elimination rounds in color, typography and faces. We also used words that echo through our design approach and our work environment: open, positive, candid.

    We kicked off 2015 with a new pass at the emails. This time we’ve reduced them again. The fewer patterns, the fewer variables, the better. We’re focusing more on the purpose and the content, aiming to create impact through utility.

    Our new templates are very open and simple.

    In reality, we actually stuck to our original set of rules. We just edited. A lot.

    Are You Ready to Edit?

    edited design

    Thinking back to where we were three years ago, I don’t believe we could have designed our templates any simpler than we did. We just weren’t ready. Our business was still evolving, with four distinct business units emerging and gaining their own footing over time. They didn’t have enough definition for us to decipher which brand elements were key.

    We were still exploring and finding the confidence to put design guardrails in place. We had combined photography with illustrations with sketches with drop shadows with overlays with whatever else we could think of. We were looking for that unique combination of elements, making decisions that weren’t sustainable across all of our sites long term.

    Today we have much more clarity in our brand voice and style. It’s been carefully edited over time. As we explored new design choices, something really different, we’d step back and realize that it just wasn’t us. Every single time. We kept pulling back until we were left with a handful of simple rules — color, typography, faces, graphic illustrations — again. We aim to delight our customers with smart design, to know their intent in their interactions with us and our products, instead of overwhelming their retinas. It’s a good foundation to build on, to see how we can continue evolving our design aesthetic without going over the rail.

    So What Now?

    clean design

    To find balance in something, you can’t be timid. You have to go all the way, then pull back. How can you know what’s just right without experiencing what’s too much? So next time you’re laboring over design, ask yourself "Is it overdesigned?" If every element has a purpose
    and a future, it’s a good sign. Then, step back and take one thing away.

    Link to article: Stop Designing So Much

     
  • araskazemi 07:45 on March 4, 2015 Permalink | Reply
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    Molnet slår hårt mot mjukvaruförsäljningen 

    I found this article interesting: Molnet slår hårt mot mjukvaruförsäljningen – via Hetaste IT-nyheterna från IDG.se

    Den svenska mjukvarumarknaden krymper med flera 100 miljoner – varje år. Det är en följd av att fler vill köpa molntjänster i stället för att använda de gamla affärsmodellerna, som licenser.

    Link to article: Molnet slår hårt mot mjukvaruförsäljningen

     
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