something to do today

something i could do everyday? any day that i write is a day where i can allow myself to relax afterwards. i don’t feel anxious about it or overwhelmed as i do when i’m on the computer trying to figure out design problems. other than the fact that i will be writing everyday next year for my thesis, i’m not sure how i could incorporate ‘writing’ as a topic of my thesis.  i’m trying to think of projects that i like that use language in a dynamic media kind of way. here are a few:

Visual Thesaurus


Mark Lombardi’s Narrative Structure


then there is cooking. besides having to do it everyday i darn well enjoy it. i had an idea for an interface (probably screen-based). it begins with a map of the world and you can search recipes and cultural influences of cuisines and ingredients. i was thinking that it would be useful to have a matrix of herbs, spices, meats, fish, nuts, etc. as a tool to improvise a bit in the kitchen and also some way to know seasonal foods would have to be part of the interface. and then drawing connections of an ingredient to other cuisines. for example, you choose a curry dish from thailand, click on chili peppers and the next thing you know you’re in oaxaca looking up how to make fresh memelas.

some influences:

The Ethnic Paris Cookbook

The exceptional and delicious culinary scene of Paris has evolved. Today, eating in Paris is no longer limited to traditional French cuisine. Mouth-watering ethnic cuisine cooked, more often than not, by immigrants from former French colonies, has turned Paris into a delight for epicureans who not only relish a traditional French confit de canard but who also savor the flavors of a Moroccan prune tagine or a delicate Vietnamese soup

Visualizing Empires Decline

and yet again, there are maps and data collection. this is where i become a bit nervous about some of the technical aspects. i’m moving over to Processing in the next couple of weeks after i finish the learning actionscript 3.0 book. here are a few of my favorite data visualization sites:

NYC Subway Ridership 1905-2006


Aaron Koblin


Trulia Snapshot

Tag Galaxy

We Feel Fine

Fractions of a Second: An Olympics Musical

Flickr tag…thing

Some last thoughts here by Graham Wallas on the creative process (and re-interpreted by Sally Hogshead)

1) Preparation: The time for research, fact gathering, assembling materials, gathering needed information before the creative act.

2) Incubation: This is the period of gestation, of letting go so that the mind, the unconscious, intuition, and emotion can mull over the information and put it into its own original perspective. Dreaming may be a part of this period.

3) Inspiration: The “Aha!” when the solution, illumination, or discovery either emerges or forces itself through into a coalesced form.

4) Evaluation or confirmation: This is the time to ask, Will it work, does it hold up next to other theories, does it logically fit with the original stimulus?


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