Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Chocolat, Microwaves & Grizzly Design

Weekly Update 2016-19: Representing Francophone Canada through psychedelic music, using microwaves in the most efficient way possible (as though they are not the picture of efficiency in the food-warming world already), and the excellent web typography of Grizzly Design.

Music: Chocolat
I found out about this band by total fluke. They happened to be nominated (and actually won) for Francophone artist of the year at the Indie music awards that I attended last week. In the five-second clip I heard while their name was being read out, I knew I would love their sound. They remind me of psychedelic music from my parents' generation, and also sound like Tame Impala (who are doing sort of the same thing). Listen below:



Accomplishment:
A lot of small wins happened last week. First and foremost, I biked to work last Wednesday and yesterday! I also biked all the way to high park and back (for a bunz trade), and on Bloor almost the whole way. I'm really excited to be ramping up my skills. I was also lucky enough to have my father help me adjust the seat of my bike. I feel much more balanced now.

I managed to participate in five Jane's Walks last week, which are always a treat. I think the best one was a walk through Bloordale, which you may remember I had actually done on my own as a photographic exploration. It was good to get some factual information (and a cookie sample from a neighbourhood bakery) to help me to connect more with the area I live in.

I finally made a good running time (in the top ten of all my recorded runs), and will attempt to ramp it up a bit more in future runs. I'd like to lose this winter weight as fast as possible!

I also finally gave my mother the grad photos I had taken for her for mother's day. It was nice to see a project come to fruition after so much planning.

And lastly, I made popsicles! They're based off a simple recipe for a smoothie I used to make in my Starbucks days. Thanks goes to bunz for the sweet blender that made this all possible. I am actually contemplating making them for bunz trades as the summer gets hotter, since they're so cheap and delicious.

A photo posted by Chloe Silver (@chloesil) on


Goal:
My goal was to bike to work yesterday (and I did!), but now that my bike seat have given me improved balance, I feel like it's time to start working on cycling one-handed. I want to be able to safely signal my turns, and sometimes, you've just got to wipe the hair/sweat/bugs out of your eyes while biking. Though, even if I get really comfortable doing it, I promise here and now never to text and bike. There are just too many things going on in these Toronto streets to make me feel like that would ever be a good idea.

I also have two design meetups planned, one for tonight and one for tomorrow night. I hope to rub shoulders with some inspiring people!

And this weekend, I'd like to do one Arduino project and write Day 3 of my adventures in China.

Random Thought:
I was watching Mr. Robot the other day, and saw that the main character, Elliot, had set his microwave to 2:22. He was frying a microchip from his computer (which is irrelevant here).


Back when I was living in my parents' house, we had this weird microwave. I never knew it was weird, it was the only one I was used to. But basically, instead of having a number keypad to type in the cooking time, it had four buttons: 1 second, 10 seconds, 1 minute and 10 minutes. If you wanted to cook something for 2:22, you'd press each of those first three buttons, twice each. Get it?

Now that I've moved out of my parents' house and have a microwave that most people would consider common, I realize why Elliot sets the time for 2:22 instead of plain-old 2:00. On the commonly designed microwave, it's easier to press 2:22 (the 2 button three times) than to press 2:00 (which would involve locating the 2 button and then the 0 button). On the wonderful microwave of my childhood, all you'd have to do to get 2:00 is press the 1 minute button twice. Easy as pie. I wonder who designed such an interface and whether the problem that they solved so elegantly was ever noticed or appreciated by anyone other than me.

Did I mention that microwave came with a huge cookbook and had convection settings so that you could use it as an oven? It even had a removable oven rack. It kind of looked like this:



Inspiration: Grizzly Design
I know this website is really trendy right now with its full-page imagery and rustic typeface/colour pairing, but I still love it. It's got a really pleasing layout and everything is organized really nicely.


I think what I like most about it is the strong sense of web typography. And the little icon at the bottom reminds me of Heinz Ketchup, which isn't bad either.


That said, the term "we" is thrown around a lot, while the email address is clearly a personal gmail address. This guy sure had me fooled that he ran a company until I saw that. Attention to detail is key! This is all making me think I should really work on the typography of my own website, though.

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