• Week 74

    17 March 2014

    A fairly focused week. First, two days of workshopping and sketching on Botley, the goal of which was to narrow down which of a variety of prototypes the team would be taking forward. Intensive, and the kind of days fuelled by coffee and marker pens that leave you reeling a little by the time they’re done. But: good work done, good decisions made.

    Then, the rest of the week on Haddington/Contributoria: primarily setting up some loose project management, and writing a lot of documentation. This is my last month on Contributoria, and I want to get a lot of things in place so that it’s easy for other developers to dive into the project.

    Not much more to report, really: a lot of running around and typing. Next week is a bit more settled – at least, on the running around front; the typing is a bit of a constant.

  • Week 67

    25 January 2014

    Busy, scattered week, this.

    Much of it was taken up with Botley – another productive meeting to work out where to devote the team’s energies, and then a day and a half of poking and prodding an API, building a tiny prototype to share some thinking with the team. Not a product in the slightest, just some sketching-in-code to work out the limits of systems and help us design them. I hope it’ll be useful to the team.

    Not much on Seager to report – just a few last teething troubles to tidy up.

    I had a fascinating meeting on Wednesday, which has led to a tiny proposal, for a project I’m calling Butser. It’s for a lovely client, with a really interesting problem, and could turn out to be a nice meaty-code-problem to keep me busy if it comes off. For now, though, we’re aiming to start small if we can get the funding. Definitely worth the time meeting up.

    On Thursday, I went to a workshop organised by CDEC around what a Connected Products Studio – something they have a mind to creating in London – might entail. A rich, involved day, with a great room of expertise from small companies and technologists through to funders and facilitators; many thanks to Alex for organising and facilitating the programme.

    And then, on Friday, I moved studio. I’ve been renting a desk from Makielab since I went freelance, and I can’t thank them enough for their hospitality. But needs change, and so I’ve moved into PAN’s studio space. They’ve been good friends for a while, and have a space really suited to the shape a bunch of my practice is taking. I’m still in East London, of course.

    A busy week and a bunch of moving. Week 68 I’m taking off – heading to the hills and having a bit of a retreat. I’ll be back for Week 69.

  • Week 66

    17 January 2014

    Pulled in lots of directions this week:

    • A day wrapping up the month’s work on Contributoria/Haddington, laying the foundations for Dan’s work for the rest of the month.
    • Paying my tax bill.
    • Various meetings and lunches with friends, about interactive theatre and games culture, which were a nice tickle for the brain.
    • Wrapping up a final set of bugfixes on Seager, which led to the startling discovery that 3G connectivity providers may will strip websockets from port 80 because of their lousy proxies – we lost some time to that one.
    • A day of workshopping for the BBC on a project that I’m calling Botley for my references.

    Fun, though: two concrete days at either end, and lots of little bits in the middle, tidying up and poking some other bits of technology in my spare time. One potential project has fallen through for the time being, though thankfully this isn’t too much of an issue; a couple of speaking engagements have emerged. Lots of focuses, then, but a solid week. One more like that, and then I’m heading to the hills for a week’s R&R.

  • Week 60

    9 December 2013

    Lots of things happening this week.

    Primarily, a bulk of work delivering pages and functionality for Haddington. That took up most of the first half of the week. Work on this paused a little whilst I waited for the back-end code to move ahead, at which point it’d become clearer what front-end work was a next priority.

    In the time that opened up, several new pieces of potential work emerged and began to be planned:

    • Claife, a pitch for some research funding into connected objects; I’d be acting as a technical advisor and building out some of the functionality, as well as assisting in the design, if that comes to fruition.
    • Botley, which will likely begin as some design workshops in the new year, before possibly turning into interaction or functional prototypes – we’re going to play things by ear. But for now, some workshops with a diverse group, looking at media products.
    • Seager, a tiny project: helping an in-house R&D team at a company prototype a connected object.

    Seager is already underway, and is proving to be as exciting as it is enjoyable. I spent some spare hours on Friday pulling together various strands with a breadboard of components, a bunch of Ruby and just enough C; progress came surprisingly fast. Really good fiero.

    I also wrote my short talk for Wearable Futures: I’ll be speaking as part of the Wearable Cities strand, and talk a little about Cities as Platforms. That’s next Tuesday.

    A good week, then: lots of things moving forward and some super-interesting work on the horizon. Next week, when I’m not at Ravensbourne, back to Haddington in earnest.