Writing

WRITING

It’s like driving a car at night. You never see further than your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.

E.L. Doctorow

Written communication has been a cornerstone of my professional career. From tweets to treatises, on technology or strategy or design or process, in Word or PowerPoint, on WordPress or Web sites — I’ve written a lot. A few samples are below.

Popular Media

Design Systems for the Real World
A gap exists between theory and practice when it comes to application design systems. When the needs of an application are not met by the patterns within the system, a “gap of interpretation” leads to increased effort for designers and developers, which can lead to undesirable outcomes. Over the course of four years at GE, we developed and evolved our application design system encountering both successes and challenges along the way. While there’s no silver bullet solution, we ultimately found that a community-based approach leads to greater design system adoption and to the best outcomes overall.

Professional Blog

I’ve been sharing ideas about business, technology, design and user experience since 2003 on bitstrategist.com. My posts run the gamut, from short to long, from one-offs to series. Here are a few that I particularly enjoyed writing:

Digital Ecosystems
The digital world has gotten complicated. Really complicated.

Between web sites, smartphone and desktop applications, and a menagerie of social media platforms and services, it’s hard for many businesses to sort out where to focus their efforts. Thinking about all of these elements as part of a broader digital ecosystem can bring some clarity.

The Education Revolution
The Internet is spawning revolutions across all facets of society, and our traditional education system is the latest industry to face its disruptive power. In a series of articles, I explored a simple model for thinking about the education revolution, broke things down into manageable chunks, and discussed some of the business innovations going on with online learning and the so-called edtech revolution.
The Tragedy of the Comments
The initial ideals of civil discourse in comments, of capturing the intelligence of the readership, has been a joke for some time. Comment threads on big blogging sites inevitably devolve into a flurry of snark, diatribes and name-calling (much like they have done on discussion boards and in other online forums over the past two decades). The recent flurry of “fake news” and bogus content just pours gasoline on the fire. This post takes a deeper look at blog comments and on some proposals to deal with the tragedy.

White Papers

Translation is not Enough
Sapient white paper on globalization and global Internet development (2000). The paper and its contents have been presented numerous times, most notably at CommerceNet 2000. Co-authored with John Harris, Director of Technology at Sapient.