Google Celebrates The Invention of The Barcode

October 7, 2009

While checking my gmail today, I noticed a barcode where the Google logo should have been. Apparently, on this day in 1952 a patent was granted for the first ever barcode. Go figure.


Google May As Well Have Run An Ad On Craigslist

June 15, 2009


Illustration by Gary Taxali — A response to Google’s request for free work.

I despise “contests” put on by companies looking for free work. I also hate when said contests are voted on by the general public i.e. the very same people who submitted to the contest. It’s basically spec work under the pretense of opportunity — and there are few things worse than spec work.

Free work with the promise of “exposure”, however, is even more loathsome than spec work. Granted, exposure is always good but when a company has a set business model and your work, though not entirely tied to the business model, may in some way benefit that company’s bottom line, it is only fair that they offer more than “exposure” for something they obviously see as valuable.

A round of applause to the NY Times for publishing this article about illustrators who declined Google’s request to feature their work on its new web browser without any compensation. Like the article says, when you’re a company as large and profitable as Google, there’s no reason to invite artists without offering to pay them. It’s not as if they’re a floundering non-profit, with limited resources, and a philanthropic agenda. Cheers to Melinda Beck and Gary Taxali for speaking out against it on record.

There will always be takers, Google. Some of us are not in a position to decline the exposure. Still, that doesn’t make it okay. For a company as “progressive” as Google, you’d expect a little more r-e-s-p-e-c-t for the artist.

Links:
Use Their Work Free? Artists Say No To Google

also, here’s a link to Drawn’s repost of Gary Taxali’s Drawger post referenced in the article
Don’t Call Me


The Numerati vs The Designer: Why Google Web Designers Keep Quitting

March 28, 2009

Yesterday, Silicon Alley Insider tried to shed some light on why Google web designers keep quitting. Fundamentally, Google is a data-driven company; All decisions made there, including design choices, must be supported by data. While a case can be made for running a company this way, many designers would find it particularly difficult working there.

Read about it here:
What Google Web Designers Hate About Working For Google

Also, read my original thoughts on this topic. As a designer who has worked in a fairly data-driven company, I’ve thought about this quite a bit.
The Numerati vs Designer Dialectic


Employee Number 20 in The NY Times

March 2, 2009

The NY Times Business Section has an interesting article on employee number 20, Marissa Mayer, Vice President of Search Product and User Experience (the woman who controls the look and feel of Google). Apparently she’s somewhat of a celebrity. Who knew?

Link:
Putting a Bolder Face on Google