Pointless and heartfelt new year's strategy

I shall try to have more free time to finish books, knitting, personal projects.
I shall attempt to get back into shape by taking a much lusted after flamenco class.
I shall attempt to make new friends in London, the kind that likes to have coffee and a rant once in a while (seems difficult here)
I shall attempt to travel more with Matt rather than waving goodbye or vice versa.
I shall try to not be the only working during the holidays next Christmas.

Happy New Year all!

Roadblocks to green decisions

I’m spending a lot of time around Elephant & Castle (no its not a virtual game but rather a southern and definitely dodgy neighborhood of London) and going to get my lunch at the local Tesco. The other day, as I waited for someone at the entrance, an EDF sales person approached me to sell me their electricity scheme. I asked him about any green options and he looked at me blankly. He suddenly turned around and reached out for a corporate brochure, flipped through it and pointed to an article on their environmental goals. This only described that they intend to build a fund to do research on alternative energy sources… nowhere good enough clearly and I said that I was interested in a sustainable source of electricity, to which he replied “well at least I’m honest”.

Oddly enough EDF actually own and supply British Gas, my current provider. So when they talk of green-sourced electricity you really have to ask yourself who’s telling the truth.

Offsetting what?

There are a million entertaining things about living in London and this is definitely one of them. With all the press about offsetting your travels, it’s interesting to see the term used in a completely unrelated context (the mortgage industry apparently has always used this term to define payments made) and questions perhaps its power to get people to act or relate to the issue of global warming.

Visions of the future

As echos of Half-Life 2 from the other room force me into headphones mode, it made me think about the ways in which entertainment likes to make us see the future. Games, comics (hmm, sorry graphic novels) and movies show us a future where things have gone wrong, dystopian, weird and dark.

In design however, we usually design for a better future. Always making things better, more efficient, making people happier, better citizens, better parents, better neighbours…. better better better more more more.

So when it comes to sustainability, we have to be better better better and do more more more even if the future looks grim and apocalyptic. Like the 2 sides of a same coin, we’re asking people to live with 2 different concepts: hope and despair.

Or maybe we’re just better off planning for the worse.

You are an alpha geek if:

(Any resemblance to any living person is purely accidental and unintentional)

1. You no longer listen to round-table introductions
2. You attend conference because there will be “the usual suspects”
3. You prepare your slides while others present
4. You have reached your quota of AIM buddies
5. Have a ratio of 1:10 following: followers on twitter
6. You come back from an event and conference with business cards you never have time to look at. (They’ll find you online you shrug.)
7. You have stopped blogging (that’s what twitter and jaiku are there for)

About definitions

Must be the weather. I’ve changed the blurb on my website for the first time since I started freelancing.

Before:

This is the online portfolio of Alexandra Deschamps-Sonsino, freelance interaction designer. I am interested in the way service design ties product design and interaction design together to create meaningful experiences for people both in the virtual and tangible worlds.

After:

This is the online portfolio of Alexandra Deschamps-Sonsino, industrial and interaction designer. She designs technology-enabled and socially-aware creative solutions to problems. From product design, service-based experiences, mobile-based interactions as well as play experiences, what binds her work is a holistic approach to problems, a keen interest in the user and collaborations with partners and clients from around the world. She now freelances in London, UK.

I like it, what do you think?

Update: ok here’s the final version in light of comments :)
This is the online portfolio of Alexandra Deschamps-Sonsino, industrial and interaction designer. She designs technology-enabled and socially-aware creative solutions to problems. She takes a holistic approach to problems, a keen interest in the user and collaborates with partners and clients from around the world. She now freelances in London, UK.