Pixel Envy

Written by Nick Heer.

Weekend Reads

It’s a very warm and sunny Friday here in Calgary, so I’m not ready to dive into heavy think pieces. I’m sitting here sucking up an iced cappuccino. So, with that in mind, here are a few lighter reads.

Kevin Fanning, wrote a great piece for the Lifted Brow called “Now That’s What I Call Brand Engagement”:

He didn’t notice you – he was holding a giant neon slushie up to his face and taking a picture of himself kissing it. Making out with it. Licking it and tonguing the sides of the cup, his eyes rolled back in the throes of passion, while his other hand held out a phone. You watched as he took the selfie in one shot, like it wasn’t even complicated, like the angle and the light and the framing of the face weren’t witchcraft at all, but merely incontrovertible laws of physics.

He flipped and one-thumbed the buttons on his phone while pulling on the straw with his teeth. He suddenly looked up, caught you staring, and smiled. A smile like a bright new billboard, popping up to save you from the unending boredom of the horizon.

“I’m very excited about my Flavorberry slushie,” he said.

“Yes,” you said. “I can definitely tell.”

“Very. Excited.” He held your stare.

Why Every Gadget Feels Like Shark Dick”, written by Claire L. Evans for Vice:

This texture is somewhat undefinable. It’s variably described in plastics industry literature as “silky” and ”soft-touch,” but the way my friend’s vaporizer felt wasn’t new to either of us, nor is it likely unfamiliar to you. Shark dick, if you will, is everywhere. My iPhone case is made of the stuff, as are the buttons of all the remote controls in my house, the ridges of my earbuds, and my FitBit wristband. Start groping and you’ll find instances in every room of your house.

I’m using “shark dick,” of course, as an umbrella term, under which fall a variety of texturally similar materials: silicone, thermoplastic elastomers, polyurethanes, and rubbers. These share physical properties—hydrophobia, biocompatibility, durability, heat resistance, grippiness—that make them highly desirable for consumer applications from design and engineering standpoints alike. And while not all these materials are created equally, they all provoke the same reaction.

They practically beg us to touch them.

And Casey Johnston wrote “All The iPhone Apps You Can’t Delete Are There For Rich People”, which is spectacularly unquotable for all the right reasons.

Update: One more link that I meant to share: “Your Favorite Photoshop Experts Open Photoshop 1.0”. I complain about Adobe and Photoshop a lot, but I’ve got it good compared to early ’90s designers.