This city is probably one of the most shocking cosmopolitan environments in the planet. I wish I could explain with normal words how stupidly-huge this place is.
Ridiculously over-priced malls blends with cheap eats, high-fashion heels steps on rotten streets and 1 minute later on luxury carpets on a random restaurant in middle of the French Concession.
Here you can see, feel, smell and dodge (literally) all sort of things. I have the chance to work with people form all around the world, and I found on this talented group of co-workers a curious fact on how our behavior can change the way we see our surroundings.
I'm gonna be bold and boring on this journal, so if you're already bored, just go away. If not, take a read.
I work studying and researching about user behavior, user interface and user experience as a whole. This allows me to study how things work instead of how things look. Of course, UI and UX are tied to each other in the digital world of web interfaces and applications in general, but for a moment, I realized how easy it is to expand this analogy to the real world, and make assumptions of how you can enhance your way of living and reach a great lifestyle without being bothered by the 'extra bits of information' that clutters our daily life.
Sounds boring? It gets worse now!
Findings about what people's behavior dictates when it comes to web applications is amazingly difficult to condensate in a single sheet of data. Each person feels and acts in different ways towards everything they see on a daily basis, even if their routine fixes certain actions on each step.
On real life, the data is the same. We're all different, yet the same. Stupid life is so complex lol.Except here in China.
Funny, isn't it?
Life here can be as fun and easy as you want, or as fucked as you wish. It all depends of you.
Here you have shitloads of lights and billboards, funky signage mixed with bad-translated copy, which makes it useless in the end. Being part of such a fast growing culture has made me realize of how relaxed life can be, if you want to.
Clutter on our surroundings is everywhere, from the tiny lines on the road, passing through the leaves on the trees, the braces on the tiny gilrs looking weirdly at you, to the tuned-up cars and crazy haircuts on people walking on the sidewalks. Air pollution helps to blur a bit this visual mess, but it fucks up your lungs. I smoke, so is not that I care that much anyway.
If you could build a website out of this chinese culture, it would probably be as fucked as geocities. However, the awareness of all the life assets here makes your brain filter the data with a more selective process. It's automatic.
It's funny to compare this to chinese web design, where the simple fact that the characters add 500% more complexity to anything you create, similar to what happens in Korean, Japanese, Thai, etc. For many of us that would feel like 'wtf is that', but for them it looks normal, readable and sparse enough to enjoy the experience of browsing.wtf, WHY.
Because they don't care and don't bother to pay attention to most of the useless crap they see. That's why they walk like that, they dress like that, they drive like that... because their culture in real life has changed the way they feel the digital world.
They're very impressive on many things, and I'm a passionate admirer of the chinese culture as a whole. Especially the ridiculously tasty food. Man you gotta come here and hump the dishes with me.
For all of us, the rest of the world, it works different. At least in a way.
We get bugged with ads, we get annoyed with useless links and extra clicks. We go away if we can't find what we're looking for after 5 clicks. We get scared of credit card icons, flashy punchlines for paid products or services, etc.
Why do we do that... what's the purpose of that 'OMG I WANT FREEBIES' all the time?
Best things in life won't come for free. Unless it's sex. That can be free and it's the best shit evah.
But the point is... We need to learn from what our daily life is, and apply that behavior to the real world.
We have to stop being hardcore-clickers and start being more eclectic on what we want to process on the internet.
We have to think that we're looking at a bunch of pixels with nice looking stuff, but our inherit feelings reacts totally different when we enjoy the very best of our daily life. Which is... Umm... life. Obviously.
If you can't be bothered to make a few extra clicks or read the extra punchlines (which might actually take u somewhere someday, like they did with me lol), you might be missing the point of exploring the world as its offered on the internet.
Open a bit more your eyes, and see how fucking beautiful things are. Even if they look like Linux. Even if they're geocitizied, even if they're ugly... just wonder for a minute who the hell did it... imagine each click that person had to make in order to create that thing you're looking at. That person is probably proud while you just hate the shit out of it for the way it looks.
I have the knowledge and taste to judge when something sucks, or when something rocks.
Lately it's becoming difficult, as I'm seeing how the new trend is to be more expressive through design, instead of following patterns.Patterns.
They're there for a reason, to make the user experience more 'familiar' and makes us lazy when we avoid creating new things on our own.
Who the fuck decided the logo goes on top left and not on top right. Who decided to use rollovers, or big text for titles? It was logic.
Next time you create something, think with logic first, aesthetic later.
Next time you look at something, feel it with your heart first, and use your maths later.
Next time you read a journal like this, it will probably be a LULZ journal, but feel it in the same way.
Grab a bit of the ego out of ya, and enjoy what your screen shows. Think about how much work was put there to make u say 'HAH' or to make you say 'WOW' or 'WTF'.We, artists.
We, artists, tend to think too much about how things look, and we forget about the primary objective of art: Express ourselves.
Of course, if we can make money out of it, great. If not, great anyway, we're here to make people happy with what they see. Many of them won't give a shit, but for the ones that do, it's an awesome feeling.
That's what keeps me coming back here all the time. You guys.You all
are fucking awesome.
Cheers to you all, and hopefully I'll be able to surprise you VERY SOON. WALLMASTER OUT.
M.ps. My wife is on dA. lol. ~zambee