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Weekly Inspirations: February 16th, 2018

Here are the things that I think are worth reading and checking out this week:

The Top Dos And Don’ts Of Working With Creative People

Whenever designers get together, we complain about difficult clients. At the same time, we love our clients. And, of course, we need our clients. Any collaboration is only as good as the relationships, which take work. I realized long ago that my difficult clients weren’t assholes or jerks or stupid. They simply didn’t know how to work with creative people, and that disconnect consistently leads to frustrations. So I decided to write a book, Dear Client, to help clients better work with creative people. Here are my top three tips:
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This is Colony: a platform for open organizations

We believe that the most successful organizations of the future will be open. Openness is not about open plan offices or ‘20% time’. It’s about how decisions get made, how labor is divided, and who controls the purse strings. In an open organization, you’re empowered to do the work you care about, not just what you’re told to do. Decisions are made openly and transparently. Influence is earned by consistently demonstrating just how damn good you are. It means everyone’s incentives are aligned, because ownership is open to all. And that means opportunity is open to all, and a new world of possibility opens up. Colony is infrastructure for the future of work: self-organizing companies that run via software, not paperwork.
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The topic of design not only continues to evolve, but it’s become much more of a core concept in the business world. That means assembling your design team takes even more careful consideration than it did five years ago, especially since top talent is becoming more and more difficult to secure. In this article we’ll share some of the tips and tricks we use inside New Haircut when it comes to building reliable, resilient design teams. Specifically, we’ll cover the kinds of culture and mindsets that make top design teams, the roles and capabilities that matter, and how to conduct your interviews.
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This Design Generation Has Failed

There are two words every designer needs to feel comfortable saying: “no” and “why.” Those words are the foundation of what we do. They’re the foundation of building an ethical framework. If we cannot ask “why?” we lose the ability to judge whether the work we’re doing is ethical. If we cannot say “no” we lose the ability to stand and fight. We lose the ability to help shape the thing we’re responsible for shaping.
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The best icons are unambiguous and unmistakable, ones that any user will immediately recognize and understand. But the best custom icons are ones that harness those universal visual totems, and tweak them just enough so that they carry a new connotation without losing their original meaning. Take Twitter’s iconography for instance. The social media giant uses standard signifiers for elements like the “home” tab and the “write tweet” function, but baked in their own branding to align them with the larger user experience. The universal home icon is spun into a birdhouse, the traditional pencil becomes a feathered quill.
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Why Apple Is The World’s Most Innovative Company

The only things more impressive than Apple’s financial numbers are the products that generated them. For a company routinely slagged for not having had a hit since 2010’s iPad, Apple, which as of mid-January was valued at more than $900 billion, had a heckuva 2017: Its wireless AirPods became ubiquitous from Brooklyn to Boise, and can now be paired with the best-selling Apple Watch Series 3, which has GPS and cellular connectivity, for a meaningful, new consumer experience. Developers embraced ARKit, Apple’s augmented-reality framework, like nothing since 2008’s App Store (which paid out $26.5 billion last year). After a year of whining about what the new iPhone might offer, most skeptics were blown away by the iPhone X, with its facial recognition, camera quality, bezel-to-bezel screen, and new user interface. Now, HomePod, first announced last June, offers a fresh take on the intelligent speaker. These category-redefining products don’t just defy the adage that scale hampers agility and creativity–they obliterate it. During a January 10, 2018, conversation at the newly opened Apple Park (itself an impressive product launch), Apple CEO Tim Cook sat down with Fast Company to discuss the overarching philosophy behind Apple’s ever-evolving universe and what unites its ambitions and endeavors.
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