Not Signed-In
Which clippings match 'Operating System' keyword pg.1 of 1
05 APRIL 2014

What is skeuomorphism?

Dan "O'Hara argues that, strictly speaking, the term skeuomorphism refers only to those vestigial elements in nature or artefact that survive from an original form, even though they are no longer required. At its broadest, this definition extends to the levers and dials in a modern aircraft cockpit, for example, which no longer connect to systems directly, but instead are merely inputs and outputs of a computer that actually controls things. Such controls are skeumorphs because they are holdovers from the days before computerised aircraft, and have been left in their original form for the benefit of pilots, who are used to them working in a particular way.

So can a digital depiction of something properly be called a skeuomorph? It is more accurate to refer to it as a visual metaphor that calls to mind a physical skeuomorph without really being one. The iPhone's notification panel, with its imitation linen effect, was not descended from an object that was once made of linen. The switch that, say, allows you to switch an iPhone into Airplane Mode is not an on–screen replacement for what used to be a physical switch. In the early days of graphical user interfaces, designers employed familiar devices, such as folders, trash cans and other objects commonplace in the office. The result was that operating systems ended up being littered with depictions of things that had never existed inside a digital device; the on–screen 'trash' icon is not the vestigial remnant of an actual trash can that was once part of the computer, which is why it is really a metaphor, not a skeumorph. (That said, as computer graphics became more detailed, the original blocky icons gave way to more detailed depictions of trash cans, folders and so forth, which are arguably skeuomorphs of visual metaphors.)"

(Glenn Fleishman, 25 June 2013, The Economist)



1889 • actual object • Apple • Apple iOS 7 • archaeologyauthenticitycomputer graphicscultural materialism • Dan OHara • digital depiction • familiar devices • faux leather • faux wood panelling • folder • Glenn Fleishman • graphical user interface • holdover • imitation • iOS 7 • metaphor • Microsoft Windows 8 • Microsoft Windows Phone 7 • nostalgiaobsolescence • on-screen replacement • on-screen textures • operating systemornamental designornamental form • physical skeuomorph • romanticism • Scott Forstall • skeumorph • skeuomorphskeuomorphic designskeuomorphismThe Economisttrash can • vestigial remnant • visual depictionvisual metaphor • visual representations • visual simulation • Windows 8 interface • Windows Phone 7 • wood panelling


Simon Perkins
09 MAY 2012

Welcome to the Era of Design

"All businesses, no matter what they make or sell, should recognize the power and financial value of good design.

Obviously, there are many different types of design: graphic, brand, packaging, product, process, interior, interaction/user experience, Web and service design, to name but a few. ...

You see, expecting great design is no longer the preserve of a picky design–obsessed urban elite – that aesthetically sensitive clique who'd never dare leave the house without their Philippe Starck eyewear and turtleneck sweaters and buy only the right kind of Scandinavian furniture. Instead, there's a new, mass expectation of good design: that products and services will be better thought through, simplified, made more intuitive, elegant and more enjoyable to use.

Design has finally become democratized, and we marketers find ourselves with new standards to meet in this new 'era of design.' To illustrate, Apple, the epitome of a design–led organization, now has a market capitalization of $570 billion, larger than the GDP of Switzerland. Its revenue is double Microsoft's, a similar type of technology organization but one not truly led by design (just compare Microsoft Windows with Apple's Lion operating system)."

(Adam Swann, 5/03/2012, Forbes)

Fig.1 "Mille Miglia" bicycle by VIVA [].



advertisingaestheticsAmazon.comApple • Apple Care • applied discipline • B2Bbrandbrandingbrandsbusiness • business to business • CMO Network • competitive advantagecreativity • customer recommendation • customer satisfaction • customer-centric • customersdesign • design-led organisation • elegant design • employee satisfaction • enjoyable to use • era of design • experience design • feel good • financial value • First Direct • Forbesgood designgraphic designhyperconnectedIKEAinnovative designinteraction designinterior designintuitive designleadership • led by design • marketer • marketingmeaningful experiences • Michael Eisner • MicrosoftMicrosoft Windows • new era • new standardsoperating systempackagingPhilippe StarckPinterest • process design • product design • rewarding experiences • service design • service touchpoints • social media • social-media-fueled society • Switzerland • urban elite • user experience designweb design


Simon Perkins
15 APRIL 2012

Beta blockers? : proprietary data formats may be legally defensible but open standards can be a better spur for innovation

"Thomson [Thomson Reuters] makes the proprietary bibliography software EndNote, and claims that Zotero is causing its commercial business 'irreparable harm' and is wilfully and intentionally destroying Thomson's customer base. In particular, Thomson is demanding that GMU stop distributing the newer beta–version of Zotero that allegedly allows EndNote's proprietary data format for storing journal citation styles to be converted into an open–standard format readable by Zotero and other software. Thomson claims that Zotero 'reverse engineered or decompiled' not only the format, but also the EndNote software itself. ...

Litigation, which may go to a jury trial, is pending, so judging this case on its legal merits would be premature. But on a more general level, the virtues of interoperability and easy data–sharing among researchers are worth restating. Imagine if Microsoft Word or Excel files could be opened and saved only in these proprietary formats, for example. It would be impossible for OpenOffice and other such software to read and save these files using open standards – as they can legally do.

Competition between open–source and proprietary software is long–running, as personified by the struggle between Windows and Linux for desktop and server operating systems, but also in many branches of software used by scientists. Researchers tend to lean towards open sharing, but they will also pay for added–value features, and it's important that the playing field is level. Ultimately, the customer is king."

(Nature, p.708)

Nature Volume 455, p.708 (9 October 2008) | doi:10.1038/455708a; Published online 8 October 2008, Nature Publishing Group, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited.



2006 • added-value features • authorshipbibliography softwareCenter for History and New MediacitationcopyrightDan Cohen • data format • digital informationEndNoteGeorge Mason Universityinteroperabilityknowledge integrationlawsuitlevel playing fieldLinuxMicrosoft ExcelMicrosoft WindowsMicrosoft WordNature (journal) • open sharing • open sourceopen source filesopen source software • open standard format • open standards • OpenOffice • operating systemorganise and share • OS • ownershipproprietary • proprietary data formats • proprietary formats • proprietary software • researchersreverse engineering • science news • science policy • Sean Takatssoftwaretechnology • Thomson Reuters • trademark infringment • Zotero


Simon Perkins

to Folksonomy

Can't access your account?

New to Folksonomy?

Sign-Up or learn more.