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Blog Newsletters

61 – Cockroach Theory, Tricking Yourself & Helicopter Money

newsletter-61

 

One Trick: For being nice to yourself

It’s actually surprisingly hard to be kind to ourselves, specially when we are talking about our future selves. “Whenever you can, do something kind for Future You.” Try think of the future you as a close friend whom you care about. What advice would you give that close friend? Would you tell them to skip the gym and eat more junk food?

One must read speech: The cockroach Theory

Before reading about this speech, I had no idea on the differences between “Responding” vs “Reacting” to life. This is so incredibly elegant story reminding us we shouldn’t let life happen to us, but instead we should be responding purposefully to what’s around us. Please read it, I don’t think my explanation can do it any justice.

One Kickstarter Campaign: Smart Running with STEPP

Running is easy, running efficiently and injury free is pretty hard (believe me, I’ve had my fair share of knee and ankle injuries) These tiny device currently on Kickstarter for just 12 more days could be the best running coach you could hope for. It promises real time feedback on your running, tracking and giving you feedback on your form and fatigue level. I so want one, but I don’t run enough to justify the $129 USD price tag.

One New Concept: Helicopter Money

Free money is surely a good thing right? How about free money for everyone but you? And what about free money for absolutely everyone? The term “Helicopter Money” is kinda like Quantitive Easing to the extreme. It could be a good thing for the short term, but it’s effect for the long term is pretty unclear. Also big thumbs up to The Memo‘s newsletter for their “What the Heck…” section

One Website for Illustrators: Society 6

If you are an illustrator and is interested in selling your designs, this is a fantastic website. You upload your artwork (preferably vector) and it allows you to sell it as t-shirts, phone cases, cushion covers or even hats. Some amazingly beautiful designs
 


 

My Week

What an eventful week! So much happening I’ve also started to look my internally at the problems I have been facing. Asking myself why I do certain things or why do I fear certain things (my greatest fear is that I am not smart and/or incapable, that I don’t deserve success).
[The Good] Finally got myself back into some muay thai training, I almost fainted half way in the class but it felt so good when I realised I actually survived (shocking how much my fitness level has dropped)
[The Good] Side project is moving along, no idea if it’s worth the time at this point
[The Bad] There’s some stress financially at the moment, which adds to the pressure for the side project to move quickly
[The Bad]  The 3.5 hours of commuting is pretty annoying and huge waste of time, trying to be more productive with podcasts and writing this email
P.S. Thanks Jay for reminding me how shocking my first ever newsletter was.

Categories
Blog Newsletters

#60 – Friends, Prioritisation and Hacking your old cameras

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One Question: Do your friends like you

“Show me your friends and I will show you who you are.” How many “close friends” do you have? It’s definitely about the quality over quantity here, and the shocking thing is not having enough could mean you die younger #SeriousStuff

One App: One Big Thing

I think it show be obvious to be productive, having a todo list is critical. What this little app does is help you focus on getting one key thing done a day first, then you can look at smaller tasks. I would also recommend you write down your todos for the next day at the end of the day, it lets you get started quicker the next day and allows you to remove yourself from it to enjoy the rest of the evening.

One Kickstarter Project: Digital life to old cameras

I LOVE old film cameras, I love how they look as much as the quality of you the photos it self. As we are moving more toward smartphone photography (which I both appreciate and detest) These beautiful designs are being discarded and forgotten, this amazing project is bringing them back to life.

One Article: The Psychology of Pricing

Tips and tricks used by startups and large corporation to make you spend more. Its really surprising how many ways they can come up with to psychologically detach you from your perspective of “money”. Does anyone remember facebook coins?

One Wakeup call: Gymnastic Bodies Mobility

I’ve been suffering from an alarming number of back, shoulders and ankle issues lately. Its worrying and a hell of a wake up call to better look after my body. If you are interested in improving your general mobility level I highly recommend this Tim Ferriss podcast with Gymnastic Bodies
 


 
My Week
Bonjour everyone!
What’s been happening? The last 2 weeks has been absolutely crazy, mainly due to a number of minor family issues and side projects. Finally things are looking as if it’s moving in the right direction again, it’s very tiring but I hope things will work out. fingers crossed!
[The Good] Found a much nicer way to commute to work, allowing more time and space to read or relax
[The Bad] Struggling with being ok with the unknown much more than usual
[The Bad] Screwed up my ankle, it feels like it’s jammed and not in the right position a lot of the times

Categories
Blog Newsletters

Weekly Top 5 #59 – AI choices, Charts and Addictive Games (Pokemon Go)

On AI: How would you decide who should get hurt?

Should self driving cars sacrafice the driver to save a pedestrian? How about 2? MIT scienctists are trying to work out what the “right” decision might be and they need your help.

One Video: How free mobile games are designed to make money

I am incredibly surprised at the popularity of Pokemon Go, even more so on how long this craze has been going on. It turns out there’s an entire science behind how addictive freemium apps are designed.

One Graphs: Which type of chart you should use

Its not always obvious which type of chart you should use to present information, should you stack that bar chart? This article has a fantastic chart that makes it much easier to decide

One Quote: Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever

A fantastic quote by Mahatma Gandhi. The strange thing for me is, I’m not so worry about the first part on dying, but much more concerned if I’m using the time wisely to learn.

One Article: Should you be listening to music

Is it a good idea to listen to music while you work? What about when you are trying to learn somethign new? It turns out some very smart scientists already have the answer.


My Week

Fear is a strange thing, the fear of failing has literally been paralysing me, big opportunities are arising yet it’s incredibly hard to grasp it with nearly enough strength as I want to. Its like an invisible mental and emotional wall is always nudging me to delay or avoid it altogether.  
[The Good] I’m very grateful of my jack-of-all-trade background, it literally forces me to look at problems as a whole
[The Bad] My email inbox is stressing me out, one of my fear is that I am inadequate that I don’t know enough, so I feel compelled to read as much as I can with every newsletter.. which is 10 more than I have time for.

Categories
Blog Newsletters

Weekly Top 4 #58 – Sleep/Batteries & Confidence/Productivity

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One Lesson: Company Culture matters

Most people might know this already, but I’ve only learnt how important company culture is recently. This article goes into depth on what an inspiring culture can do and I can’t agree more.

One Article: Confidence and Productivity

Have you ever thought about which came first? The ability to be productive or be confident in what you are doing? When we aren’t feeling confident, we might hesitate every step of the way. So the question is, can you slowly build up your confidence by actively doing?

One Cartoon: Disruptive vs Sustained Innovation

Really simple and nicely done cartoon on the difference between 2 types of innovation, with great examples too.

One Chat: That Changed Everything

If you ever wondered What leadership should look like, check this out. It’s actively giving your team space to fail and grow and not micromanage just to avoid mistakes, wow!

One Stupid Thing: Not Sleep

“Why do we take care our smartphones more than ourselves? We know approximately how much battery a phone has, but what about yourself?” Brilliantly said by Arrington Huffington on creative live. I need to allow myself to sleep so much more!


My Week

Hi everyone,
How are you? This week has been a bit tiring one on my side, the excitement of a new job has fated and while I’m still learning about the company and it’s operation it can be rather frustrating at times. The positive side is that I am slowly building relationships and making friends.

[The Good] Slept for 10 hours last night, that made me so happy
[The Good] I might have a long commute, one of the bonus effect is that it allows me to spend a bit more timing thinking quietly to myself
[The Bad] Coding HTML emails for Outlook 2003

Categories
Blog Newsletters

Weekly Top 5 #57 – Conversations, Coding and 56 years of TV

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One Video: How to have better conversation

How good are you at conversations? Are you distracted or are you really paying attention? Are you listening to the other person or listening just enough so you reply with something witty? NPR radio host Celeste Headlee has some fantastic points we should be paying attention to make us better listeners and have more interesting conversations.

One Resource: Learn to Code

I believe knowing how to code (even just a tiny bit) makes me a better designer. Having a good understanding of grids and responsive flows makes it easier for me to work with developers, I don’t have to take risks in making assumptions which may or may not result in making enemies with developers.

One List: Fascinating Facts about us

We are such strange creatures, I’ve never really thought about it, but I think this statement is true for me “People who speak two languages may unconsciously shift their personalities when they switch from one language to another.” Check out this simple but fascinating list of facts.

One Article: No Body Cares How Hard You Work

“If you are judging your output by your tiredness, you are sure to be misled” I think I need to have this printed and stuck on my wall as a reminder. it’s not about working hard, it’s about working smart and on the right things, tiredness should not be a badge of honour and I need to remember that.

One TV show: 56 Up

I’m not sure how I didn’t know about this TV series. An absolutely fascinating record of 14 British children since 1964 with one episode every 7 years spanning 49 years. This could very much be the very start reality TV. Some of their stories are rather exciting, whilst others can be a bit sad.
 


My Week
Hello Ladies and Gents,
So much has been happening in the past week, I’m now at a new place of work. The environment is very different to how I’ve worked so far and I’m having to pick things up rather fast, it’s a bit frustrating at time, but also exciting.
[The Good] New work, New challenges 🙂
[The Bad] Spending my days in smoggy HK island will take some getting used to, got bit of a flu

Categories
Blog Newsletters

Weekly Top 5 #56 – Validation, Design and FramerJS experiment

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One Experiment: Playing with FramerJS

A short blog post I wrote last week on learning to use FramerJS for prototyping. Both Invision and Pixate failed to create the type of animation and interaction I was hoping to experiment. *The demo is a completely rebranded and repurposed interface to protect my client.

One Tool: Validation Board

Business ideas are literally a dime a dozen, they are completely worthless until you can REALY proof they work. This Validation Board can help you walk through the steps you need to take to fully test whether business idea would work.

One Product: No More Tying Shoelaces

I can’t really explain it, but I seem to be pretty bad at tying shoe laces. They are always coming lose and to me, they waste so much time, something like this would make me pretty happy. (Yes, you would be correct to think I’m rather strange).

One Website: Fubiz

Fubiz is not a new website, but it is one of my favourite for visual inspirations. Fully of innovative designs in various mediums, this french website is absolutely packed with truly amazing designs every single day.

One TV Show: Stranger Things

I am without any doubt, a child of 90s movies, I loved movies back then, they have a certain quality and excitement around it that modern movies nor TV shoes just can’t recreate. Until Stranger Things that is, highly recommended
 


My Week
Hello from Hong Kong!
It has a bit of an exciting week for me, since my last newsletter I’ve had two presentations as part of an interview process and I’m very excited to say, things are looking pretty good. Hopefully I have a bit more interesting news to share next week 🙂 Wish me luck!
[The Good] Might have an interest job very soon
[The Good] Been going to the gym a few times and are enjoying it
[The Bad] Not too much this week, feeling pretty good (despite the heat)

Categories
Blog Newsletters

Weekly Top 5 #55 – Simplification, Being Hard on Yourself and How to Work

One article: How not to work

The line between work and play is blurring and that’s a really really bad thing! We are not machines, I firmly believe we need time away from work in order for us to actually be the best at our work.

One GREAT article: The ‘Brute Force’ Design Process

As a designer, its pretty easy to think you know what’s best for your client, the colour they should use, the style they should adapt and even the tone of their voice. However the truth is, there’s no way we can know more about a business than those who work in it day in and day out. That’s why I think it’s so important to get stake holders involved and prototype WITH them instead of for them.

One Video: How Simplification is the Key to Change

Beautiful talk by Lisa Bodell on how to change your work place for the better by being SIMPLE. Instead of mundane procedural meetings, things shoudl be kept simple so that we can focus on what we actually feel passionate about.

One Quote: There’s a difference between doing things right and doing the right thing

I love this quote by Peter Brucker really makes you think if we spend enough time thinking about are working on, are we doing it just because we are going through the motions of ‘work’ out of laziness, or are we spending the time and energy on what is needed?

One Article: Being too hard on yourself

I REALLY REALLY liked this article – being harsh on yourself is unproductive and unnecessarily stressful, instead we should take the approach of “treat yourself with the same kindness that you would a close friend” it’s a long learning process because we are all so used to the “No Pain, No Gain” mentality
 
 

My Week

So a lot has been happening lately, which includes moving from one side of the world to another. I am finally back in Hong Kong and desperately trying to sort my life out. Which is why I have been so awful at writing these newsletters,
[The Good] Things are slowly coming together, First priority is finding a job! Been having a few interviews, so I might have some good news next week
[The Bad] I am reminded how doing ‘small’ quick website projects are never quick, going through a slightly painful wordpress job at the moment

Categories
Blog Tools & Services

FramerJS for Prototyping – Good tool, Bad share

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I beg you, don’t look at the code… I’m sorry it’s a mess

So here’s my first attempt at using FramerJS. I only looked into it out of frustration. Marvel and Invision wasn’t handling the animation well enough and Pixate got too weird and complicated really quickly, so since I had bought Framer with Sketch together many months ago, I might as well gave it a try and it was… AMAZING!

Pros

  • Imports from Sketch pretty easily
  • Once you understood how functions/animations are structured it’s really easy
  • FAST
  • The prototype changes as you TYPE (no need to save)
  • Can share to mirror prototype to mobile really easily

Cons

  • I had to learn CoffeeScript
  • The sharing function is REALLY basic
    • No Password protection for prototype
    • All prototypes uploaded will be available for download (I’m embarrassed of my code!)
    • Can’t delete a prototype once it’s shared, you have to email support
    • Prototype is pretty slow in iFrame

 

My First Prototype

Here’s my first attempt with Framer with a fictional project, let me know what you think? Is there a better tool out there?

Categories
Blog Newsletters

Weekly Top 5 #54 – Being poor is expensive, Bored and Self Reflection

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One thing we are missing: Self Reflection

Once upon a time we used to get bored, and what’s more shocking is that we were pretty ok with being bored. Constant connection to the internet and Facebook meant we no longer spend any time just gazing into space and reflect upon ourselves.

One Concept: Its expensive to be poor

This concept makes me sick, this frustrating constant is unfortunately a way of our society, basically the poorer you are the more money works against you. Bills are higher even if you use the same amount, you have to spend more on repairing cheap cars and you can take advantages of bulk buys. it’s pretty shitty. Another article on this crappy problem.

One Designer to follow: Mike Monteiro

If you are designer, watch as many talks by Mike as you can, then read all his books, I’m only about 1/5 of the way through his stuff, but can already tell he is fantastic. Here’s a good one to start one How Designers Destroyed the World.

One Slides: Death & Future of Apps

A neat little presentation about how “apps” has evolved from tiny tools on our mobile phones to giant smart systems. Some are incredibly helpful but invisible.

One Tool: How much for does a website cost

If you ask me “How much is it to make a website”, I’ll answer  with “How much is it to buy a car”, the answer is the same: depends what you are after! A 10 year old Ford is going to be very different from the latest Aston Martin. This site asks you a bunch of questions and gives you a rough idea of the cost, not perfect, but it’s a helpful indicator.
 


My Week
Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh, I seriously need a break
[The Good] Unfortunately, I really can’t think of much
[The Bad] Missed all my goals last week. No meditations and no job offer in HK
[The Bad] Superbly stressed at the moment, so many things happening left, right & centre

Categories
Blog Newsletters

Weekly Top 5 #53 – Parents, Self Esteem and Making Friends

One Animation: Your Parents & Your Self-Esteem

Unfortunately, I know a lot of people who I think are unfit to be parents, either emotionally or mentally. This quick animation shows just how much your parents can effect your self-esteem / how much you like yourself.

One Article: The Science of Making Friends

I know the article title is a bit awkward, it’s suggesting something that is supposed to be so natural to us should be studied with cold hard science. You don’t actually need to worry about the ‘hard science’ of it all, it actually just talks about how important it is to make an effort in making the right kinda friends for you – people you like, people you get on, people make you a better person and not just whoever you happen to know already.

One Video: Being a Thought Leader

A fantastically funny “Ted Talk” on how to PRETEND to be a thought leader, highly worth watching and it’s less than 3 minutes long

One Podcast: Kevin Rose’s Journal with Jason Fried

Really good podcast with Kevin Rose (Serial Entrepreneur and Investor) and Jason Fried (Found of Basecamp) on what builds really amazing company culture, and it’s not always about the money.

One Ad: Lego, Not awesome

Many of you may have heard of “Everything is Awesome” the song from the Lego movie, it’s certainly very very catchy. Well, Greenpeace heard it too but disagreed with Lego because the amount of damage Lego is causing to the environment. In response they made this Ad.
I love legos so much, please don’t make me hate you, clean up your act please!


My Week

Hi folks,
How’s your week been? I’ve started job hunting in Hong Kong, had several skype interviews so far, some went well, so not so sure about, both exciting and nerve racking. I also realise I much prefer in person interviews, I would prefer it if I could see the person I’m interacting with instead of just skype audio.
[The Good] I’m still writing my 5 minutes daily journal
[The Bad] Anxious about moving back to Hong Kong, so much to sort out
[This Week’s Goal] Go to Gymnastics training and be awesome
[This Week’s Goal] Get a job offer in Hong Kong