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jerryking : aesthetics   12

Opinion | The Dominance of the White Male Critic
July 5, 2019 | The New York Times |By Elizabeth Méndez Berry and Chi-hui Yang. Ms. Méndez Berry and Mr. Yang started a program to amplify the work of critics of color.
aesthetics  art  artists  art_reviews  blind_spots  criticism  culture  cultural_criticism  cultural_interpretation  curation  engaged_citizenry  opinions  opinion_makers  TIFF  white-saviors  white_men 
july 2019 by jerryking
Why Small Businesses Are Starting to Win Again - The New Yorker
JANUARY 24, 2015
Small Is Bountiful

Farmers who sell, say, organic or free-range foods, cannot hope to compete based on price. Instead, they try to create consumers who won’t eat chicken produced by big companies for moral, health, or aesthetic reasons...The true-differentiation strategy seems to work best when scale, despite its efficiencies, also introduces blind spots in areas such as customer service, flavor, curation, or other intangibles not entirely consistent with mass production and standardization. Where getting big begins to hurt the product, small can be bountiful.

it is a two-part problem. No. 1, the consumer and competitive marketplace is definitely shifting. For example, quality has evolved beyond just good ingredients, preparation and packaging. Basic quality is a given now; many consumers are looking for something extra: less mass-produced, natural, local.

No. 2, iconic food companies and their mature brands are not responding effectively. Large, established food companies and their brands are being managed as portfolios of revenue and profit streams with a short-term financial orientation, and not as companies that produce food products. Small companies, on the other hand, are being created and managed by people with a food orientation and passion.
small_business  size  scaling  Tim_Wu  Peter_Drucker  portfolio_management  Gulliver_strategies  differentiation  trends  breweries  beers  craftsmanship  artisan_hobbies_&_crafts  revenge_effects  blind_spots  personal_values  market_segmentation  mass_production  decreasing_returns_to_scale  aesthetics  eco-friendly  creating_demand  food  foodies  gourmet  large_companies 
january 2015 by jerryking
Powerful Thoughts From Paul Graham — Ross Hudgens
21. Empathy is probably the single most important difference between a good hacker and a great one. Some hackers are quite smart, but practically solipsists when it comes to empathy. It’s hard for such people to design great software, because they can’t see things from the user’s point of view.

25. In a field like physics, if we disagree with past generations it’s because we’re right and they’re wrong. But this becomes rapidly less true as you move away from the certainty of the hard sciences. By the time you get to social questions, many changes are just fashion.

34. Whatever the reason, there seems a clear correlation between intelligence and willingness to consider shocking ideas. This isn’t just because smart people actively work to find holes in conventional thinking. Conventions also have less hold over them to start with. You can see that in the way they dress.

43. E.B. White was amused to learn from a farmer friend that many electrified fences don’t have any current running through them. The cows apparently learn to stay away from them, and after that you don’t need the current. | If you’re a hacker who has thought of one day starting a startup, there are probably two things keeping you from doing it. One is that you don’t know anything about business. The other is that you’re afraid of competition. Neither of these fences have any current in them.

50. But since for most of the world’s history the main route to wealth was to steal it, we tend to be suspicious of rich people.

59. “A lot of the (people applying to be graduate students at MIT) seem smart,” he said. “What I can’t tell is whether they have any kind of taste.” Taste. You don’t hear that word much now. And yet we still need the underlying concept, whatever we call it. What my friend meant was that he wanted students who were not just good technicians, but who could use their technical knowledge to design beautiful things.

64. Good design resembles nature. It’s not so much that resembling nature is intrinsically good as that nature has had a long time to work on the problem. So it’s a good sign when your answer resembles nature’s.

70. You’re most likely to get good design if the intended users include the designer himself. When you design something for a group that doesn’t include you, it tends to be for people you consider less sophisticated than you, not more sophisticated. And looking down on the user, however benevolently, always seems to corrupt the designer. [Good design therefore requires personal risk? having skin in the game?]

76. “Of all tyrannies, a tyranny exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive.” – C.S. Lewis
biomimicry  business  inspiration  productivity  quotes  start_ups  Paul_Graham  Y_Combinator  via:hotchkiss  empathy  design  UX  hackers  personal_risk  PhDs  aesthetics  dangerous_ideas  smart_people  the_single_most_important 
november 2014 by jerryking
Physical campus still counts in virtual world
Winter 2014 | Western Alumni | by Paul Wells, BA'89.

A campus isn’t just a luxury from an earlier and more genteel era, it’s starting to seem central to the work a university does. And Western’s lovelier-than-average campus is starting to look like a considerable competitive asset.....I don’t want to overstate the significance of all this. If a university offers a lousy education or does timid, incremental research, it doesn’t matter how fluffy the seat cushions are. Western’s real strengths are in its lecture halls and labs. But I was reminded how, despite its largely utilitarian function — the simultaneous education of tens of thousands of young people — Western remains a pleasant place to be. This matters because the traditional model of the university — a physical place where people convene in large numbers for extended stays to learn and exchange ideas — doesn’t look like it’s going away anytime soon.
Paul_Wells  UWO  Colleges_&_Universities  MOOCs  aesthetics  physical_place  shared_experiences  shared_consciousness 
january 2014 by jerryking
Chris Del Gatto's $200,000 Upgrade—For a Rental -
OCTOBER 1, 2010 | Wall Street Journal | By NANCY KEATES,
Appearances are important to Mr. Del Gatto's business model. At his
company's offices in cities like NYC, Hong Kong & Palm Beach,
clients head to plushly appointed private rooms to sell their jewels to
buyers—a different experience from the cash-for-gold pawnshop-type
experience or the high-commission public auctions that traditionally
dominated the secondhand jewelry market. ...Mr. Del Gatto didn't grow up
on Fifth Avenue. Born and raised on the Lower East Side, he skipped
college and became a licensed gemologist at 17, eventually becoming a
partner in a diamond manufacturing firm. Realizing there was no luxury
brand to which the public could sell their diamonds and jewelry, he
started buying and selling estate jewelry, attending auctions and
getting to know dealers from around the world. He launched the company,
Circa, named after the term used when describing origin, in 2001.
aesthetics  jewelers  jewellery  luxury  high_net_worth  pawnbrokers  second_hand 
october 2010 by jerryking
What Knockoffs Can Teach Companies About Chinese Markets | Co.Design
Sep 8, 2010 | Fast Company | by Makiko Taniguchi & Eddie
Wu. Fakes and knockoffs often express unmet desires that big firms miss.
Learn from them...Countries, from the U.S. to Japan, regularly accuse
China of copying designs. Indeed,MNCs in these countries spend an
inordinate amount of time and money trying to prevent their products
from being copied. But Shanzhai -- "copycat" design --represents a vast
business opportunity. Shanzhai is an open platform for grassroots
innovation: Apple, Nokia, and Samsung smartphones get copied, but the
knockoffs adapt the original designs in ways that appeal to Chinese
customers. E.g., Shanzhai designers might add a flashlight, key in areas
with unstable electricity. The effect is to make products accessible to
common folks in terms of price, aesthetics, values, and needs. Shanzhai
designs are an opportunity for international companies to introduce
Chinese consumers to their brands, and then observe how local Chinese
culture adapts their offerings.
counterfeits  China  customer_insights  discoveries  pattern_recognition  ideo  opportunities  innovation  design  adaptability  patterns  copycats  unarticulated_desires  Bottom_of_the_Pyramid  emerging_markets  brands  multinationals  aesthetics  knockoffs  creative_appropriation  cost-consciousness  low-income  affordability 
september 2010 by jerryking
Bridging the Gap -
June 8, 2009 | New York Times | By HENRY PETROSKI. Argues that
essential structures need not be aesthetically inferior. Such structures
should strive to balance form and function.
infrastructure  aesthetics  design  smart_infrastructure 
june 2009 by jerryking

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