This week we’ve collected articles on creating great infographics, recruiting designers, drawing wireframes by hand, fonts for coding, and Google's attempt to create a font that can render characters from every language on Earth.
What did we miss?
You want to create an infographic that spreads like wildfire and shows off your organization’s expertise. Unfortunately, the internet just isn’t that into your infographic. Hubspot’s Joe Chernov diagnoses this problem and comes up with a simple (but incredibly challenging) solution: Keep it simple and focused on one specific idea. To do that he recommends getting rid of anything that is IBU (interesting but useless).
Billing itself as a “primer on the different design roles in the tech industry,” this post details the difference between a UX designer, a UI designer, a visual designer, an interaction designer, a UX researcher, a front-end developer, and a product designer. In addition to emphasizing that, as much as people would like to, you will not be able to hire one person to fill all these roles, the author illustrates his points by relying on job descriptions from Google, Facebook, AirBnB, and Pinterest. If by the end you still think “I need designer” is a self-explanatory statement, then you need to read it again!
New interactive designers at Fender (the guitar maker of Strat and Tele fame) get a laptop and a pouch with pen and paper because the team relies so heavily on hand drawn wireframes for a good part of the design process. They say this approach allows for more collaboration along the way by keeping things flexible and helps them to work through a lot of ideas quickly. As a result, says interactive design manager Mike West, the team "ends up with more solid ideas in the final design stages."
If you write code, you know that in general you’re stuck with unappealing looking typefaces for your work. That’s a vestige of a time when screens had much lower resolution than today’s high definition monitors (as well as a function of your text editor). Now comes Input, “a flexible system of fonts designed specifically for code.” According to the Font Bureau, “Input has generous spacing, large punctuation, and easily distinguishable characters,” making it easy for coders to catch typos, comment, and in general read the written code.
If a certain character can't be rendered on the web, it will show up as an empty white rectangle. The folks at Google call these rectangles "tofu" and have been working to develop a font called "Noto"—standing for "No Tofu"—which aims to support every character in every written language. This article describes the process Google has followed to produce the font and presents some of the criticism that the project has encountered. Do you speak or read a language that can't be rendered on the web? Do you trust Google to solve the problem?