Friday reading #23

Martin Belam by Martin Belam, 8 October 2012

Erm...Friday reading on a Monday? How does that work? Well, why not just look at it as a few bonus reads for your commute during the week? Anyway, here is a round-up of some things that caught my eye over the last ten days or so whilst noodling around the web. You can grab it all as one Readlist, optimised for iOS, Kindle, or the ereader of your choice...

Friday reading

“Facebook’s ‘Next Billion’: A Q&A With Mark Zuckerberg” - Brad Stone and Ashlee Vance, Bloomberg Businesseek
“It feels like an honor. We get the honor of building things that a billion people use. I mean, there’s no core need. It isn’t a core human need to use Facebook. It’s a core human need to stay connected with the people you care about. The need to open up and connect is such a deep part of what makes us human. Being in a position where we are the company—or one of the companies—that can play a role in delivering that service is just this … it’s an honor.”
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“Lessons for Enterprise from Facebook and its 1 billion users” - Walter Adamson
“Facebook’s total cost of revenue is about $1b. A large chunk of that goes to running IT infrastructure ... In Australia the big banks, big telcos, and some other large organisations spend in excess of $1b per annum each on IT to serve a minute fraction of the user base of Facebook.”
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“Social Login Buttons Aren’t Worth It” - Aarron Walter, MailChimp blog
Food for thought. “There’s a strong case to be made that as Facebook and Twitter have amassed such huge user bases we should take advantage of the fact that so many of their users are already logged in and just one click away from entering your app. I know that argument all too well, because I made it to my colleagues. We tried that experiment, and found that while there are some marginal improvements to login failure rate, they come with a price.”
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“Unfollowing” - Frank Swain, SciencePunk
“I get tired of waking up and checking my phone, only to invite a torrent of snide, bitter comments on the day’s happenings into my still-warm bed. Now I realise that, if I’ve curated a feed that I don’t like, that’s entirely my own fault. I’m free to unfollow people whose needling voices I don’t like.”
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“10 lessons Mobile Operators learned when we measured their 4G Customer Experience” - CIQUAL Customer Insight
“In our experience the servers of websites a user accesses are becoming the current bottleneck of 4G mobile data user experience. Facebook and other internet brands have to keep pace with their huge popularity by deploying enough (fast) server infrastructure to satisfy their users. Right now, IP packets are transferring across the 4G networks faster than many internet brands are processing them.”
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“I cannot design or code a responsive website” - Nick Jones, .net
“There's this fallacy of a right way and a wrong way to design and code. If you spend enough time looking for it or reading about it, you'll end up paralysed. It happened to me. But in early 2012, five years after the launch of the iPhone, I decided it was time to suck it up and create a modern website for myself. What follows are my doubts about making narrowdesign.com.”
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“Of Flying Cars and the Declining Rate of Profit” - David Graeber , The Baffler
Great. But long. Makes the point that we shouldn’t be satisfied with a crap future.
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Things you may have missed

One of the reasons I got behind with actually publishing Friday reading last week was the amount of effort I’d put into writing up the EuroIA conference in Rome. You can read my notes of talks by Gerry McGovern, Peter J. Bogaards, Birgit Geiberger & Peter Boersma, Raffaella Roviglioni, Jonas Söderström, Andrea Resmini & Eric Reiss, Jim Kalbach & Carola Weller, Hermann Hofstetter & Gregor Urech, Sara Wachter-Boettcher and Stephen P. Anderson.

You can also download the full set as an ebook for iBooks, for Kindle or as a a PDF.

The book includes the essay version of my own talk at EuroIA - “Responsive IA: IA in the touchscreen era”.
“Working on projects that require responsive design to target the small screen has changed some of the ways I’ve worked over the last couple of years, and I wanted to share some of that.” Smashing Magazine described it as having “Great insights on responsive workflow.”
Read the full article

Forthcoming talks and events

I’ll be talking and teaching at the following events over the next couple of months:

Keep up to date on my new blog