29 May 20 -

Super8: Eight intriguing articles from May.

We’ve hit the halfway mark of 2020 and it’s officially been an absolute rollercoaster. This year—more than any other—we need to ‘unexpect the expected’ and be ready to adapt to change. That’s why this month’s edition, much like the the first half of this year, is an edition of all-sorts.

So strap yourself in and enjoy the reading ride, brought to you by Rachel Antoniadou. After finishing this edition, you‘ll either want to sing at the top of your lungs or prepare for a cyborg university take-over, depending on which way the wind blows for the future.

1. PIPOW: A framework for communicating project issues to clients and stakeholders.

Unfortunately 2020 has dealt the world its cards and it’s fair to say that a few of them have been less than ideal. There will always be bad news, especially in a time of turmoil—but it’s the delivery of the bad that can ultimately affect the final outcome.

It can be stressful to deliver issues, but this PIPOW framework for communication can help you deliver all the information, calmly, objectively and on time—even if it’s not what someone wants to hear.

If you need help softening the blow, I implore you to read, try and perhaps even implement this technique. You (and your clients or collaborators) will feel better for it.

2. How stress can make us stronger.

  • Listen to the podcast here.
  • Article by: Nike, TRAINED.
  • Contributor: Sarah El-Atm.

According to psychologist Angela Duckworth, stress can actually help us adapt to difficult situations. Given the current climate, this might be a powerful tool to have in your belt right now.

Sometimes your first plan doesn’t always go to plan. Sometimes you have to rework and rethink until you find a viable path—it takes grit and it can be stressful. But we should try to optimise stress: never waste the opportunities presented by a crisis, if you can overcome your fight-or-flight.

3. Four factors that lead to more enjoyable product experiences.

  • Read the full article here.
  • Article by: Renne Fleck.
  • Contributor: Bridget Noonan.

As the world continues to move everything online, it’s important for creators to design products that people genuinely enjoy using.

The creators of Fortnight—a purposefully-small, experimental studio of makers and creators—invite you to share what they say is their ‘tried-and-true’ formula for user-friendly experiences.

Whether you’re a designer, a developer, or someone who just likes to create, Fortnight’s four takeaways can help you create a better user experience for almost anything.

4. The coming disruption.

  • Read the full article here.
  • Article by: James D.Walsh.
  • Contributor: Daniel Banik.

Imagine a world where elite cyborg universities monopolise higher education. Imagine more people than ever having access to education: as long as they have Internet.

Scott Galloway predicts that like department stores in 2018, universities—especially those that don’t have waiting lists—will fall out of business.

Big tech companies like Apple and Google will be waiting to pick up the pieces. As we look to the future of higher education Galloway proposes many questions:

Will big-tech’s inevitable entry into education reduce our humanity, or create a net gain in value? What will happen to the campus experience when great education is entirely online? Does this create an ultimate reduction in humanity?

I guess only time will give us the answers.

5. Google Street Art.

  • Read the full article here.
  • Article by: Google.
  • Contributor: James Otter.

This month, we are starting to walk the streets again and it’s like a whole new experience. However, for some people, that is still not entirely possible.

Google has plucked art from sidewalks and street corners from all over the globe and compiled them for your enjoyment. You can discover the history, location, and creators of street art from around the world.

So if you’re still inside, fear not. It’s your time to hit the virtual streets. Take a stroll through Buenos Aires. Head over to Rue 5 in Paris and discover Tower 13. Watch walls come to life through animation—all you need to do is click a button.

6. Five ways leaders accidentally stress out their employees. 

  • Read the full article here.
  • Article by: Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic.
  • Contributor: Rachel Antoniadou. 

As a leader, you are an amplifier of people’s emotions. If you do things right, you can bring out the best in people even in the worst of times. If you take the wrong approach, you will lower morale and performance even when things are fine.

During times of uncertainty, leaders are looked to for guidance.

However, there are times when leading the charge can take a toll—and it can be hard to find a positive. Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic highlights the five behavioural patterns that most often increase people’s anxiety levels.

If you can spot them early, you can learn how to change them to become a more effective leader and, by extension, a more effective team.

7. 68 bits of unsolicited advice.

  • Read the full article here. 
  • Article by: Kevin Kelly.
  • Contributor: Elliott Grigg.

Kevin Kelly’s been around. He’s 68, which means he might know a thing or two in this ridiculous world we’re living in.

This list might not improve your UI or your UX design, and it probably won’t make you a better writer—but it will inspire you to be a better version of yourself than you were the day before.

Here, you’ll find subtle reminders to enhance the everyday. You’ll be reminded to separate the process of creation from improving, to fall down so that you don’t coast, and that even though talent can be distributed unfairly, there is no limit to improvement.

8. The day the live concert returns.

  • Read the full article here. 
  • Article by: Dave Grohl.
  • Contributor: Mike Mckusker.

If you haven’t guessed it… times are changing! Those of us who aren’t on the front-line are lucky; we’re safe in our houses—but that doesn’t mean that for some of us, there isn’t an aching to be squished like a sardine with thousands of people as you wait in anticipation for your favourite performer to walk on stage.

Sometimes there is no better feeling then singing arm in arm, with people you may never see again, all because of the communal power of music.

It’s important to remember the feeling of singing at the top of your lungs to your favourite band along side a person you’ve probably never met. Why? Because in a period of isolation, we must hold onto music’s great lesson: no matter where we are, we are not alone.