For a Future-Friendly Web (Mobilism 2012)


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As the digital landscape continues to become more complex, it's essential for us to start thinking beyond the desktop and embrace the unpredictability of the future. Mobile is forcing us to rethink the content we create and the context in which people interact with our products and services. This session will cover how to change our thinking and start acting differently in order to create more future-friendly experiences.

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  • Hey Everybody! \nMy wife and I have been here since Saturday and it’s our first time over here. We’ve enjoyed the beautiful sights, canals, shops,\n
  • So this isn’t the web.\nOnce upon a time it was, hence this amazingly crusty looking old desktop computer.\nBut this is what we’ve been used to for the last 15 years.\n
  • smartphones, dumbphones, e readers, tablets, netbooks, notebooks, desktops, smart TVs, game consoles and a whole lot more.\nthe concept of the web becomes a lot bigger.\nand a bit more daunting as well.\n
  • But if you think about it this is actually just the beginning\nIn addition to all our existing devices\nThere’s a ton more connected devices right around the corner.\nBut perhaps what’s more important than the things already in our periphery are these question marks.\nNobody knows what the device landscape will look like even two years from now. I mean, you turn your head and...\n
  • BAM! Google comes out with some crazy new shit like Google Glasses.\n
  • BAM! Google comes out with some crazy new shit like Google Glasses.\n
  • So it would be foolish to say that we can create anything that’s truly future-proof.\nBut just because we can’t predict the future...\n
  • Doesn’t mean that we can’t do things today that better prepare us for what’s in store.\nSo why the web?\n
  • So why the web? Like Scott mentioned earlier\nThe web’s superpower is its ubiquity. \nNo native platform or proprietary solution can claim the same level of reach as the web can.\nAs more things become connected, it’s more important to reach them.\nThe Web’s ubiquity and intrinsic inclusiveness is something that should be embraced and preserved\nBecause the web has the potential to serve as the glue that holds the connected world together.\n
  • But here we are.\nMany people still think of the web as this 960 pixel wide box that sits on a desk or on your lap\n
  • We need to change our mentality to prepare ourselves for a future filled with disruption and change\n
  • what we actually do as web creators. what content and functionality we are creating.\nand how, why and where users interact with the content we create.\n
  • So the first rule in all of this is to create shit that’s actually worthwhile.\nThat actually solves a problem.\nIt needs to be sincere.\nYou might laugh, but...\nI spend a lot of time around vocabulary that makes me cringe. “Let’s use gamification to leverage millennial influencers and socialize these drivers. Or whatever the hell they say.\nWe need to be legitimately useful.\n
  • People’s capacity for bullshit is rapidly diminishing.\nWe’re getting fire-hosed with over 34GB of data, and there’s more STUFF than ever, photos, apps, services, sites demanding our attention.\nJames Pearce yesterday mentioned that Facebook users now upload 300 million photos a day. Ten Percent of all photos ever taken in the history of photography were taken LAST YEAR.\nOut of necessity we’re being forced to focus on the essential bits and cut out the crap.\n\n\nOut of necessity we’re \n
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  • So we need to simplify and focus on what really matters\nMove away from being digital hoarders, and it’s easy to do because unlike real hoarders we can’t see the stale old newspapers cluttering up our house.\n
  • If you don’t focus your content, your users will do it for you.\nWe have many ways of increasing our signal and decreasing our noise. \nIf we can’t find what we want from you, we’ll go to the next guy. \nMobile is a catalyst. We want exactly what we want at exactly the time we request it.\nEvery line of copy, every script we include, every feature we add needs to ADD REAL VALUE.\n
  • So creating relevant worthwhile things is the main goal, but then we need to rethink where our content and services are going.\nJosh Clark channeling Bruce Lee. Think of our content like water that’s able to be poured into a multitude of containers.\n
  • People are interacting with our sites and apps on devices that in many cases didn’t even exist whenever we built them.\nIt’s not about the web. It’s not about apps. It’s about being present wherever our users may be. \n
  • Being that we’re all working in mobile, I bet if we counted up all the instances we’ve all heard this, it would probably add up to about four hundred million instances.\nBut we need to think beyond any individual channel \n
  • So instead of short-sighted app ideas, or site ideas, we need to take a step back and think about what we want our products and services to do on a more abstract level.\nIt’s not about apps. It’s not about the web. It’s not about Facebook.\nAnd sure, the app store or another channel might be facilitate that big idea, but we need to \n
  • “I want to make it easy to view movies”\n“I want to make it easy to buy and read ebooks”\n
  • By thinking more\n
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  • of course our users are comfortably seated at a desk\nof course they’re focused and caffeinated, ready to rock with an efficient input like a mouse and keyboard\nof course they’re viewing on a large screen on a capable browser with a fast connection and a powerful CPU\n
  • but of course over the last few years we now know that context is a lot more diverse\n
  • it’s a lot harder to define now\n
  • CONSIDERATION\nincreasingly divergent though. Some of these connected devices won’t have interfaces at all.\nAre they using a touchscreen? What about a remote? Or gestures?\n
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  • Stephanie Rieger eloquently stated that we need to make smarter.\n\nQuite often we run the risk of slapping a new coat of paint on an otherwise condemned building.\n
  • Re-prioritize. We’ve spent so much time focused on individual channels, rather than our content infrastructure. \nWe need to create strong, platform-agnostic APIs and flexible content management systems that’s able to serve up our content in a whole bunch of different ways.\n
  • And then when we actually talk about building our experiences\nIf you think that responsive web design is all about making squishy websites, YOU’RE MISSING THE POINT.\nThere is so much more it than fluid grids, flexible images, and media queries.\nI prefer to think of it as more a philosophy than a technique. There’s lots of room for plenty of techniques.\n
  • As it turns out, “responsive design” as defined is actually just a small subset of what we refer to as “adaptive design”. It’s just one part of the puzzle, but unfortunately that’s lost on a lot of people.\nLike Jason mentioned yesterday, Stephanie Rieger said it best “responsiveness is a characteristic”\nThere’s no such thing as “Grade A, certified-organic” responsive experiences\nAnd it’s certainly not a religion. \n
  • Your users don’t give a shit if your site is responsive. They don’t give a shit if it’s a separate mobile site. They don’t give a shit if it’s a “full” “desktop” “classic” website. Mirroring Heiko They just want a great experience. \nThey DO give a shit when they can’t get done what they came here do do. They DO give a shit when your site takes 30 seconds to load. They do give a shit when all the interactions are buggy and broken.\n
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  • What excites me most about responsive design is that it gives us a language with which to talk about designing for multiple contexts.\nIt’s preparing us for the bigger battles ahead.\n
  • I trademarked that phrase just in case.\nDon’t go to, I’m not sure what you’ll find.\n
  • As James Pearce talked about earlier, mobile is so much more than a small screen.\n
  • We can’t just slap on some media queries and proclaim I’M MOBILE OPTIMIZED! Alright, I’m going to lunch.\n
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  • Progressive Enhancement, only applied on a much larger scale.\n
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  • So no one knows exactly what’s coming down the pipes, but that’s what makes this exciting. Let’s embrace unpredictability and use it to our advantage.\n\nWhat Scott said, it’s not about the incremental changes\n
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  • “The Web Is Dead”\n
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  • This is gonna take all of us\nand...\n
  • There’s plenty of room at this party and we’re all on the same team trying to figure all of this shit out. \nJames pearce had \nThis isn’t religion. This is web design.\n
  • james\n
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  • So I’ll leave you with this: Go forth and make future-friendly experiences.\n
  • Thanks guys!\n
  • For a Future-Friendly Web (Mobilism 2012)

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