Books, Quotes

I’m currently reading Donald Norman’s The Design of Everyday Things, which I am thoroughly enjoying, both for the new knowledge and the written representation of instinctively gathered information. The following quote stood out in particular, as it seems to directly relate to my lengthy post from yesterday:

The real point … is not that some people have erroneous theories; it is that everyone forms theories (mental models) to explain what they have observed. … In the absence of external information, people are free to let their imaginations run free as long as the mental models they develop account for the facts as they perceive them.

Public representation as external information. I like it when things collide. Food for further thought.

Mental models

Links, Reading, Web

Great read on higher ed websites as prompted by that XKCD cartoon

But even then, some colleges’ home pages are saturated with features that do not so much reflect guesses at what visitors need, but what various campus interests want. Greenfield said “home page politics” — different departments and personalities jockeying for position — have a strong influence on what an institution’s site ends up looking like. After all, he said, if a president says he wants a letter and a mission statement out front, what Web administrator is going to say no?

No Laughing Matter at Inside Higher Ed

Links, Reading, Web

Web reading

Now that my eyes are starting to accept a little more screen time, I’m trying to catch up on some feed reading. Here are some of the more useful web design/development links I’ve come across in the past few days:

Books, Food, Links

Snow is good for…

Maple Syrup Taffy

I not-so-secretly love children’s books and series, especially ones that describe how things were done in another time or circumstance (Swiss Family Robinson, Little House on the Prairie). I always thought it was so cool that they did things like make balloons out of pig’s bladders or burned whale blubber in lamps. Anyway, thekitchn comes through with the method for maple syrup taffy, a la Little House in the Big Woods. Think it’s loose-diet friendly?