Insights

Content is critical (Part 1)

On the Web, content is indeed critical. If we need more convincing of this statement, we only have to throw a cursory glance at current events. Content is driving the conversation. Content is leading to action. Content is critical. Sarah Winters defined the term ‘content design’ in the early days of GOV.UK, where she led… Read More »

The more you remove, the more you can remove

It seems that before most people put their tech hat on, they carefully take their brain out. For every one good tech idea, I see at least nine really stupid and unnecessary ones. But most organizations can’t resist more technology. The new website I got built for customercarewords.com has no database because it doesn’t need… Read More »

The price of free is waste

All “free” systems are wasteful by design because a free system merely hides or displaces its costs. Take for example Google and Facebook. These so-called free services cost the earth. Even as both organizations vigorously participate in greenwashing, saying how they embrace renewable energy, they will always be engines of waste because they run online… Read More »

Reducing website weight

In the digital fairytale, the evil character is Delete and the hero is Save. Digital heaven is where nothing gets deleted and everything is saved and you never know what you might find if only you look in the right place. Digital designers and particularly software developers have a terror of deleting or removing. I… Read More »

From digital unsustainability to digital sustainability

The homepage for my website (customercarewords.com) used to weigh 957 KB. Through a series of design decisions, we were able to bring the size down to 70 KB. With the exact same amount of content. With the exact same visual design. A 93% saving in the CO2 pollution that page created. The rise of digital… Read More »

Moving beyond the Cult of Volume (Part 3)

Did you ever wonder how much data you produce? In 2020, it was estimated that 1.7 megabytes of data were created every second for every person on earth. We have created more data in the last two years than in all of previous human history. When Liam Nugent shut down his digital agency, he calculated… Read More »

Moving beyond the Cult of Volume (Part 2)

Digital’s easy and cheap creative capabilities trap us in a Cult of Volume. According to digital agency founder, Liam Nugent, “a typical designer or programmer sees their job as to do, to make things. They ‘outsource the thinking’ because it’s a job, because that’s what they’ve been told to do by a client or manager.”… Read More »

Moving beyond the Cult of Volume (Part 1)

If there’s one thing digital has done it is to explode the creation and production of digital stuff. It requires herculean efforts to focus on quality in a digital environment because digital tools are so relentlessly focused on quantity. Digital feeds and accelerates a culture of waste. Liam Nugent has been leading teams that design… Read More »

Let’s green the Web

Let’s Green The Web is a five-day Twitter campaign starting this week (Monday 15) to encourage and support everybody to measure the carbon emissions of websites and share tweets highlighting the results. Let’s Green The Web aims to “both encourage, as well as support, those who run websites to take action and reduce their carbon… Read More »

Change has become an excuse for lazy design

Modern technology is causing us to lose our capacity to think ahead, to plan, to prioritize, to design with any degree of depth. The Cloud says that we can store and save everything. Google says we don’t have to organize anything. And there’s an app for everything. AI is making us dumb. I asked this… Read More »