BonWeekly Highlights – Summer 2022

Written by: Jozsef Deak

When the pandemic started, our entire company switched to working from home from one day to another. After the excitement of the new way of working wore off, monotony and boredom sneaked into our days. Many of my colleagues started initiatives to break this monotony and spice up our days. Organizing different small online events, play sessions, and the #offtopic channel of our company Slack was buzzing.

I also wanted to do something to bring a little excitement to my colleague’s days, and had been playing with the idea of having a newsletter for a long time, sharing all the fun, exciting and meaningful content I stumble upon while I roam the vast land of the internet. This seemed like the perfect opportunity to start this project – I could do something I enjoy for people I love and care about.

It started simple, but with big ambitions. I posted a daily link pack in a Slack thread with articles, music, design, art, book recommendations, videos, and whatever I found interesting. Since then, this little project has gone through several iterations. I started having it weekly instead of daily, switched from Slack threads to a customized site in Webflow with content organized by different topics, and I even stopped for a while. Many people enjoyed it, and were looking forward to it every Monday – and ever since I stopped, people have asked me if I would bring it back.

So, a couple of weeks ago, I rebooted the BonWeekly in a more sustainable format with a bigger focus on content closer to what we do and where we are going as a company.

And while this was meant for internal use at first, we’re taking the very best of what’s been shared and pass it along to you – meaning that every month, I’ll post a summary on our blog with the highlights of the issues published from the past few weeks, sharing the best of what’s been shared and talked about inside the walls of Bontouch.

#1 Ethical Design Network

A new community for those interested in ethical design (i.e. every designer) featuring an online meeting space (Slack channel), a mailing list, online events and a growing list of resources.

Tags: Site, Tool

#2 The New Exhibition

The New Exhibition is an online showcase shining a light on work of Ukrainian designers, illustrators, animators and other creatives that have been caught in the crossfire of war.

Tags: Visual

#3 Women In Type

What a marvelous little project that highlights the important work by the many ‘unseen’ women in the type industry.

Design histories have largely overlooked the activities of those who contributed to the production of typefaces throughout the industrial era. It is frequently assumed that typefaces are the work of a single designer whereas, as most industrial objects, they result from a series of processes involving multiple skills often carried out by numerous people.

Tags: Site

#4 Updatables

I’m following the work of SPACE10 for a couple of years now. (SPACE10 is a research and design lab on a mission to create a better everyday life for people and the planet.) I love their approach of mixing architecture, technology arts and product design to solve problems to improve our everyday life and our future challenges. Recently they partnered with OIO studio on a project called Updatables. 

“Updatables are a new family of furniture and accompanying application that would give agency and personality to traditionally inanimate objects, letting them inform you when they’re in need of repair or improvement. Instead of sitting silently in the corner, the application would allow your furniture to tell you how it could be improved or customised by using extra parts from IKEA furniture. By helping you to understand the ways in which you can extend the life of your furniture, Updatables would reduce waste and encourage circularity.”

Tags: Design, Technology

#5 BonTunes 001

I’m starting something new with this reboot of BonWeekly, where I will create a little playlist from songs I listen to most that month along with other interesting songs I discovered.

Tags: Music

#7 Design for Planet

I have days when I think that my whole profession as a designer is pointless compared to other jobs but I always try to remind myself that everything is designed in the world, cities, clothes, apps people use to get along in the daily lives, to entertain themselves, to learn about the world, or to learn new skills, to play, to communicate. We as designers have an important role and also a responsibility in shaping the future. This gives me hope and gives me purpose.

I want to learn more about how I can I use my skills for the greater good, to have a positive impact on the future. There are more and more organisations talking about this and taking action, more and more conferences, articles and books. Design for Planet is one of these. Last years theme was ACTION, to help designers make their sustainability plans a reality. After I read a summary on the Snook blog, I’m really looking forward to dig into the talks which are available on their site.

Tags: Videos, Design, Conference

#8 Studio Taktil

Love the work of Stockholm based 3D and motion studio Studio Taktil.

Tags: Design

#9 Endineering

I saw this book recommended by my dear friend Jenny and I think this will be the next book I will read. I borrowed her description of it:

How many ads have you designed? How many products have you launched? Have you ever designed an ending? Does it matter?

There is a gap in the consumer lifecycle that needs attention – the end.

The problems of consumerism are piled high in this gap: hoarding, pollution, unwanted pictures on social media, risks to security, mis-sold financial products. This book takes the unique approach that these problems have a common source: a bad consumer experience at the end. Endineering shows how to solve these issues, reveal new opportunities and design for better consumer endings. A mixture of stories, new tools and methods will enable readers in policy-making, business and product creation to gain a new approach to tackling issues in consumerism.

This is a HOW-TO book about endings: what to do and how to do it.”

Tags: Book

#10 Designing for Smart Homes – When Internet Fails – Bilgi Karan (Config 2022)

I really enjoyed this talk from the latest Figma Config. Some really good thoughts and reminders in it.

Tags: Design, Technology

#11 Designing Responsible Technology

This is a really nice article with about asking the right question before starting work on products, and it offers a lot of useful resources at the end.

“Why asking questions about the wider system is essential. The questions we ask before designing a product or service are crucial. They frame our understanding of the problem and inform the product decisions we make. Unintended consequences often arise when the framing of the problem space was too narrow or the questions asked didn’t consider the wider system.”

Tags: Article

#12 Cognitive Bias Codex

A visual model of human bias

This is Wikipedia’s list of 188 cognitive biases, grouped into categories, rendered as a radial dendrogram and linked to their corresponding Wikipedia articles. I love it.

Tags: Tool

#13 IKEA launches new AI-powered experience empowering customers to create lifelike room designs

The intuitive new experience offers customers the first lifelike, fully integrated way to design and visualize their own living spaces, from computers and smartphones.

Tags: Design, Technology

#14 Some questions

Sometimes, asking some really simple question can help a lot in making decisions and navigate life. Whether it is before you kick of a big project at work or in your life or when you want to do bigger changes. I like this simple questions from Seth, I often ask some of these when I want to start smaller projects in my life (most of the time I stop these projects because the answers lead to dead ends).

Tags: Article

#15 Feminist tech principles

A great list of principles more tech companies should embrace – with a print-ready poster  freely available. “The Feminist Tech principles are a set of guidelines for tech policy-making and technology creation. They are intended as responsive work-in-progress that reflect the evolving nature of our digital world… [to] advocate for digital rights and the rights of marginalized groups.”

Tags: Article, Tool

#16 Letters to young technologists

I only read the first two of this series, but I’ve really enjoyed it so far.

Tags: Article

Written by: Jozsef Deak

Jozsef has been designing mobile apps for over a decade, when skeuomorphic design was hot, Android had 9patch images and Windows Phone was a thing. He likes nerding out on design systems, Figma structures and nitty gritty UI-details.