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Sketching and the guts of phones- lessons from planningness

October 1, 2010


Kudos to Mark Lewis for his second edition of Planningness which I attended in Brooklyn yesterday. The standout sessions for me were, the one given by London-based experience designers- Made by Many” and the talk by Chris Heathcote on mobile.

Made by Many took us inside their process and it was impressive. They explained that their inspiration came from the world of agile software development, where unlike ad agencies baton passing process, you do a lot of things in parallel.

I really liked the early stage brainstorming process which was really simple and don’t let the loudest in the room dominate. Instead, they get clients to fast sketch concepts and ideas and in hour seem to come up with a lot of though starters, some of which they bring to life and perhaps even test.

Heathcote did possibly the best mobile presentation I’ve seen. Instead of talking about applications and ad units, he suggested the thing we need to develop great ideas is to understand what’s inside the guts of a phone or mobile device.

To me, most attempts at trying to get to mobile ideas involve looking at competitive applications and trying to put a twist on them. Heathcote’s way suggests creatives need to know about all the functionality like- accelerometers, voice recognoition, smile recognition, the microphone, the speakers, etc and think about how they might play with those and perhaps even combine them.

In Heathcote’s world, the Creative Technologist plays a key role, without them, you can’t really do this.

I am now really looking forward to Day 2. 

Posted by Ed Cotton

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