Finished reading: Disrupted: My Misadventure in the Start-Up Bubble by Dan Lyons, ISBN: 9781786491022

Question for @aarron after watching his presentation at #uxlondon: how do we prevent storytelling from becoming propaganda? When does building an internal culture become indoctrination? Plenty of examples to suggest this is often the result.

Google Duplex

Demoed using Silicon Valley’s favourite first-world problem – booking a table at a restaurant in San Francisco – Google Duplex instead opens a can of worms. I agree with Ethan:

I think we’re well past the point where our industry gets a pass for launching products without thinking about their second-order effects.

A related anecdote. Having received far too many robocalls asking if I had been involved in a car accident recently, I took to making beeping noises down the phone to see how far I could progress through these annoying and false conversations. One day I almost – almost – started to do this before realising a real person was calling about a genuine issue. Had I made those funny noises, not only would I have been deeply embarrassed, it would have been pretty demeaning for the person on the other end of the line.

In a society where truth and trust are a scarce resource, this appears to be an incredibly foolish product to be bringing into the world. Talking of trust; I have zero faith Google will do the right thing with this technology, rhetoric about transparency or not.

With a client project briefly on hiatus, I’ve been using my free time to think about a proper redesign of my website. Looking at the 404 page – priorities! – I thought it was probably time to bring back this guy. You’ve been missed, little fella.

The Birmingham Design Festival is shaping up to be a great event. The Renew/Rebuild discussion is of particular interest; especially relevant when many of Birmingham’s brutalist buildings have been demolished in recent years. Such a shame I’ll be on holiday when it’s on.

Watched Isle of Dogs. A fun yet timely story. An inventive example of stop-motion animation. A beautiful piece of graphic design. A work of art. A visual feast – with dogs!

Having grown up just 50 miles away, somewhat embarrassed to admit that Leicester has been a bit of a revelation to me. This beautiful, historic and vibrant city has much to offer… and only an hour away from London on the train (like that should matter).

Thank-you @CreateLeics for being such a welcoming, friendly and engaged audience for my talk this evening. And a huge thanks also to the team at @bulbstudios for organising such a stellar event. Good things are happening in Leicester!

Finding Albert is a heartwarming family history research project, with the end result being a hand drawn graphic novel. I’m so happy @cole007 has met his funding target, but there are stretch goals. If you haven’t backed it yet, there are just a few days remaining; so go pledge!