30 August 21 -

Super8: Eight intriguing articles from August.

Steve Jobs once said: ‘you must learn continually – there’s always one more thing to learn.’ And Elliott Grigg, the curator of this month’s issue of Super8, once said: ‘hey, wouldn’t it be great if we did trivia through the write-ups associated with each article in Super8?’

Thus, by combining those two impulses, we find ourselves here. In this month’s edition of Super8, there’s a topical trivia question associated with each article, with the answers at the end. So, who has the most retweets of all time? How many people use Zoom every day around the world? Get ready to find out, it’s Super8 in August.

1. Psychological research applied to interface design.

Question 1: What is the ‘inkblot test’ professionally known as? And when was it first introduced?

It’s easy to consider design as a largely ‘creative’ pursuit. But there’s quite a lot of science at play whenever you engage with any interface.

When it comes to digital design, psychology is often in the room. Imagine buying a book; after browsing for a while, you’ve chosen your next read.

You might have an innate sense of which button to click in order to ‘buy’, right? It’s largely innate because of the Von Restorff effect on focal points.

How about the book you chose? Any chance you were influenced by Hick’s law of limited choice? Learn more about the psychological theories that guide user experience.


2. Ten best-practice tips for animated GIFs in emails.

  • Read the full article here.
  • Article by: Raelene Morley.
  • Contributed by: Timocles Copland.

Question 2: What does GIF stand for? When was the first GIF released?

Ahh, the GIF that keeps on giving. Today, GIFs are a totally acceptable (read: entirely necessary) form of communication, both professionally and socially.

Punctuating a message with the right GIF is a perfect way to brighten someone’s day. Beyond driving little bursts of personal dopamine, GIFs are a great way to make email marketing more compelling and potentially more effective.

That said, getting things right can be a bit of an art form. Here’s ten tips to ensure you end up with a masterpiece.

3. Don’t adjust your screen: Twitter has a new font for improved accessibility.

Question 3: Who has the most retweeted tweet of all time? With how many retweets??

Last week, Twitter released a set of new fonts designed to make reading easier when you’re scrolling through tweets.

In addition to the updated fonts, Twitter is also updating its colour scheme to feature more contrast in the hopes of making photos and videos easier to differentiate in feeds.

As ever, it’s awesome to see accessible design practice gain attention, and more broadly, that accessibility is a major consideration for some of the biggest companies in the world.

4. Six small changes to help you tackle Zoom fatigue.

Question 4: How many people worldwide (roughly) use Zoom each day?

‘Zoom’: it’s a name that suggests pace, energy, and a sense of vibrancy. And for the most part, that’s what Zoom calls offer.

But if you’ve ever spent a full day in back-to-back Zoom conversations, you’ll know that sometimes you feel exactly the opposite.

We’ve likely all read the theories as to why you can feel a little sluggish after extensive Zoom calls: more effort spent analysing facial expressions in the absence of body language, and more energy exerted in expressing yourself to overcome the same challenge.

So how do we fight the fatigue? You can let people move around, be flexible with camera requirements, and adopt four more simple changes to help.

5. 11 laws of software estimation for complex work.

Question 5: What was the most popular programming language in 2020?

The sixth law of this list is an interesting one, and fairly representative of the sentiment of the list in its entirety. Law #6 is as follows:

“When you suck at building software, your estimates will suck. When you’re great at building software, your estimates will be mediocre.”

The take home message? Estimating is a difficult skill that is generally undervalued, and apparently underestimated in and of itself.

Estimates of effort, time or value—whether right or wrong—can be so crucial to the experience of your project. It’s worth taking the time to understand how you might be able to improve them.

6. What are the seven types of graphic design?


  • Read the full article here.
  • Article by: Darya Jandossova Troncoso
  • Contributed by: Natasha Maiselman.

Question 6: What are the seven types of graphic design?

Wherever you are right this moment, and however you’re reading this, graphic design is all around you. It’s in the interface of the web browser you’re using to view this article.

Ask yourself: is the button design employing a flat or skeuomorphic aesthetic? Why?

Maybe you’re reading this over breakfast. Judging by the packaging of the bread you just toasted, how is that particular brand trying to position itself in market? Organic, rustic, and conducive to a healthy lifestyle? How does it achieve that?

In a world where everything is carefully curated, take a moment to understand the design… of design.

7. Exploring the CSS Paint API image fragmentation effect.

Question 7: How many paintings did Vincent Van Gogh sell throughout his lifetime?

According to this piece, by CSS Tricks’ Temani Afif, the Houdini project—which the Paint API is a part of—is the future of CSS. Why? It allows developers to extend CSS with their own functionalities, rather than having to wait for the release of new features.

So, what is the Paint API? From the specification: ‘an API for allowing web developers to define a custom CSS image with JavaScript, which will respond to style and size changes.’

The explainer also offers: ‘The CSS Paint API is being developed to improve the extensibility of CSS. Specifically this allows us to draw directly into an element’s background, border, or content.’

So, what are you waiting for? Embrace your inner ‘arts and crafts’ and checkout the future of CSS now.

8. The 20 best album covers of all time.

Full disclosure: There’s no real writeup here, I just needed somewhere to store the answers for trivia. But who doesn’t love a great album cover?

Plus, if you haven’t heard any of these albums, you’ve got a great new playlist full of timeless classics at the ready. Enjoy!

The answers: 1) The ‘Rorschach Test’ was first implemented in 1921. 2) GIF stands for Graphics Interchange Format. First released on May 28, 1987, by CompuServe. 3) Japanese billionaire Yusaku Maezawa, with 4.18 million retweets of his post from January 5 2019. 4) 300 million daily meeting participants. 5) According to a Stack OverFlow study, JavaScript is slightly more popular HTML and CSS. 6) Visual Identity design; Marketing and advertising design; Packaging design; User Interface design; Motion design; Publication design; Typography design. 7) One. Van Gogh officially sold one painting, ‘The Red Vineyard at Arles’, before his death in 1890. Documentation shows it was sold to fellow painter, Anna Boch.

Thanks for playing Super8 trivia!