The entire idea of Twitter has been simplified down to it’s essential pieces. You’re not presented with three main options: Home, Connect and Discover. The home is still where your feed of friends are, the Connect section shows your @ mentions as well as interactions, such as retweeting and favoriting of things you’ve tweeted. Clearly Discovery is a place to discover, and to my surprise the topics have been pretty much in line with things I’d enjoy, so good on Twitter.
Purely from a design point of view I love what they’ve done. They’ve taken out a lot of the heritage design elements and slimmed things down even more, which I didn’t realize was possible. The UI on the iPhone is stunning, I’d say nearly perfect. There are some new behaviors though, like flicking up on the Me tab to see your DM’s, which I found interesting. People don’t like change remember, so this will be hated at first. The web app itself is nice and about as minimal as it gets, just some modules on a background. I don’t use the web interface often, but I’ve been popping on there more since the redesign, and in turn neglecting Twitter for Mac.
In a year where mainstream rap has degenerated to rhyming the same word with the same word with the same word with the same word (and maybe with “rozay,” why spell it correctly), it seems that the guys with the wildest rhymes and beats are all in Seattle.
With one of the best names in the rap game, Nacho Picasso’s new record, For the Glory, seems to encapsule both sides of the name. At times he reveals the young, naked, inner dealings of a young man who medicates it with drinkings, smoking, comic books and reruns of Half Baked. The other half is a guy who paints images and scenes while running with his words, controlling them with handles like Chris Paul. It’s a great combination and this track totally shows off some of the skills. “I’m blowin money / killin bills, black mamba / I’m a monster, Nacho the chupacabra / you’re a coon I’m hakuna matata” is both hilarious, revealing, and just great wordplay.
A few days ago Gestalten, the Berlin based publisher and maker of beautiful objects, uploaded an interview with Ken Barber, lead letter at House Industries. The video provides a really interesting insight into his work, showing how he develops typography and logos. I’m such a huge fan of House, have been since the early 2000’s, that this was a total treat to watch. Also, I think it’s super rad that he teaches typography, how fun would it be to take Ken’s class?
About a month ago, Kottke posted this video he found through Than Tibbetts which began making the rounds because of just how silly and off-kilter it was. It featured few random looking people – one jian sword dancing, one busting out some moves with a pocket knife, the other being a grandma with her dog, chilling out and watching what was going on.
When I saw this it seemed too well put together, and as it turns out my instinct was right. This morning Major Lazer released a video with this motley crew of weirdos for their newest track, Original Don, featuring Party Squad. It’s a pretty rad song, and definitely fits in with the dancing they’re doing. It’s also funny to see Diplo chilling in their world. Glad to see people like Major Lazer weirding it up more and creating a “viral video” that grabbed a lot of attention, or so I’m assuming.
Down below you can also see a behind-the-scenes-ish video of Diplo chilling with the grandma, as well as the original videos that were posted.
I was listening to Radiohead’sIn Rainbows the other day, and when I got to the end I was reminded of how much I enjoy the last track on the album, Videotape. I did a little searching and I found the version they did for Scotch Mist (which I posted about here) and was surprised at how well it still holds up, even if it’s already four years old. It’s rad to see the other guys in the band helping out on the track, since technically it’s just Thom singing and jamming on the piano. If you haven’t heard this version I’d highly recommend it.
Today’s wallpaper from Jesse Tise just might make your eyes melt, and that’s why I love it. I’ve become buddies with Jesse over the last few months because he had sent me a few things in the mail, and they were totally awesome. He also happens to live and work in South Pasadena, so he’s a local to boot. His work is great because it’s so bright and fun, and always has space monsters or kaiju or abstract landscapes. His wallpaper reflects all of these, and he was even kind enough to make some icons for the wallpaper, which you can download by clicking here.
A big thanks to Jesse for making a rad wallpaper. Be sure to check back next Wednesday for something completely opposite, and totally brilliant.
Sean Edward Whelan is an artist and illustrator living in Japan. (I think he grew up in Australia.) Many of his pencil illustrations are part of a series wherein human figures are drawn as masses of jumbled architecture. I guess you could also say that these are drawings of architecture en masse… specifically the mass of Homo sapiens. The faces of façades, the torsos of trabeated roofs and pagoda parts all give these drawings a rich level of detail that rewards closer inspection. The meticulous construction of these drawings also seems a wee bit obsessive. Not obsessive in the way you stalk the facebook profile of your ex, but the good kind. You can also stalk Sean Edward via Flickr.
I have a less then subtle love for LEGO and recently it has been manifesting into a number of blog posts here on the site. What impresses most about the little plastic brick is the level of innovation that seems to come from it. As a material one would imagine that it must be quite limiting to work with, and yet people all around the world seem to be able to turn these little bricks into all manner of weird and wonderful creations.
Take Lene Wille‘s beautifully minimalist installation Metaphorical Horizons for example. Built back in 2005 as a graduate project, the installation is stark and sculptural and yet its use of material makes for something which is both fun and playful. Her aim was to create an installation which could work as both an object and as a space, and through her use of LEGO I think she creates something which is beautiful and restrained while also being inviting and playful.
Metaphorical Horizons was built at the World Trade Center in Amsterdam over a period of 6 weeks, the finished piece being built from 270,000 white LEGO bricks. More details and images from the project can be found online here.
A lot of artists are weird. You could say eccentric, or really any number of descriptors, but I think weird is a good one. Luke Pearson, being an artist himself, may feel the same way, or at least that’s the vibe I get from his most recent comic. Created for the most recent issue of Nobrow (volume 6 is dedicated to doubles) Luke gives us a glimpse into his everyday life… ok, that’s probably not true, but it would certainly be funny if it was. The comic is honest and endearing because it’s got kernels of truth that you know some people identify with. I’m sure there are a lot of you male artists out there who’ve certainly botched a chance with a pretty girl in a similar fashion, perhaps Luke has done the same?
I came across this photo taken by Flickr user m-s-y earlier and was totally amazed by how far the iPod has come in 10 years. I’ve seen other comparison shots before, but there’s something about the way this is shot that made an impact. A part of it is the difference in the shadow, not to mention all the ports on the top of the first generation iPod. You could probably stack up three of the newest iPods to make one of the first gens.