community archives

Check out this new online Encyclopedia of Interaction Design. The contributor list reads like a who’s who of design, information architecture, usability, and user experience gurus! Definitely going to be spending some time here…

posted by ted 9 hours ago

“In the interest of being a good web citizen it’s critical to bring in the different points of view expressed in the blogosphere—and, of course, it’s fun to join the conversation. This idea was a little scary at first… after all, we should want to keep people on, right? But by being a good web citizen, we fulfill our core mission by doing whatever it takes to help you get the full story — even if it takes you away from”
CNN Blog, via Sean Sperte’s Geek and Mild

posted by ted on Tuesday, Jun 12, 2007

Friends, Cancer, and the Web

Heidi is a young mother of three, taller than average, dark-haired, soft-spoken, and kind. She and my wife were two of four parents together in a Joy School group when we lived in the Seattle area. And we just found out this week that she has been diagnosed with cancer.

My RANT against technology in this post has to do with the fact that we didn’t find out about her condition until several months had passed—several months when we could have given support, expressed our concern, and included her in our prayers. Why several months? Because the message came to an old Hotmail account that we had abandoned because it was inundated with solicitations, pornographic messages, and all manner of spam. My wife checks it every once in a while to see if anything improtant has come through, or we would have continued clueless about our friends plight. I know many bright minds are working on the spam problem… but can you please work a little faster? I don’t want to have to change my address every six months to keep it clean. It’s not just about convenience and hassle anymore… it’s about communication with those we care about.

My RAVE about technology in this post is a kudos to the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance, a chief member of which is the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center (lovingly known as ‘the Hutch’ in Seattle parlance). Their Care Pages, site is a great example of how technology can bring together people with a common cause and make a real difference in people’s lives.

The site is not a perfect model of great interaction design, but it is functional, and you can’t beat the content. The site provides a place where patients can host their own page, post an update to keep others informed while retaining whatever degree of privacy they desire. All for free.

But to me, the coolest thing was the message board. Scanning through the posts on Heidi’s page, I found love and encouragement from many that I knew and many I did not – old friends from Church, neighbors, family members, people who had lost a loved one to cancer, local Church leaders – all united in their concern and support for Heidi.

Good Luck to Heidi and all those in her position, and Good Job to the non-profits out there who are trying to make a difference, and using technology wisely to do it.

posted by ted on Tuesday, Aug 29, 2006