Archive for January, 2009

design language : comic opposition


“Stan Laurel of Laurel and Hardy fame, was one of the many early film comics who grew up in the world of  vaudeville. in his films, comic opposition was the key – one, the schemer, the other, the ‘stooge’.”

clowning through history

Pairs of things in combination, that play off of each other.


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is your work meaningful?

Malcolm Gladwell : Outliers

“…autonomy, complexity, and a connection between effort and reward – are, most people agree, the three qualities that work has to have if it is to be satisfying.”

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design language : accumulative advantage

A positive feedback loop rewards the successful ‘player’ and means that it is easier to be successful in the future.
Failure means things get harder.

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understanding & mastery = fun?

“The secret to good game design is simple. Set up situations where there is a problem that must be solved and let the user solve it. Give them subtle clue, but don’t take away that ‘aha’ moment.”

“Several loops of learning, the user’s mental model will crystallize and they will have an ‘aha’ moment where they know exactly what they need to do and how. This moment of understanding and mastery is at the heart of what we call Fun. We’ve triggered the primitive reward system at the base of all learning. It is the same feeling of delight that you feel when you ‘get’ a joke. It is the same feeling of satisfaction that arises from a job well done.”

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jokes are surprising, right?


A joke tends to lead the listener, to create an expectation and then divert to somewhere amusing.

Surprise comes when something breaks or switches from the likely outcome.

Both work better when anticipation has been established.

Priming and framing are both forms of anticipation.

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it is all about to change, only more so…

Shift Happens

simple facts presented nicely, offering huge implications

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in command and out of control

“the first thing I told our staff is that we would be in command and out of control,” Van Riper says echoing the words of management guru Kevin Kelly. “By that, I mean that the overall guidance and the intent were provided by me and the senior leadership, but the forces in the field wouldn’t depend on intricate orders coming from the top. They were to use their own initiative and be innovative as they went forward….” Paul Van Riper, US Marine commander.

quoted from Blink, Malcolm Gladwell

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