For quite some time I’ve been searching for a way to use a Danish external keyboard with my iPad when writing in English.

While it is possbile to let iOS know that you’re using a hardware keyboard with a layout other than the language you’re writing in, Danish is unfortunately not on the list of layouts that can be paired with English, and no amount of searching the web nor trips to my local Apple store have led to a solution, nor have hopes that the next major iOS version would add Danish to the list been fulfilled. Fortunately the addition of cursor control and text selection to the iOS 9 software keyboard have made using it a joy, and for some time my Keys-To-Go have gone unused.

There are however situations in which the ergonomics and extra screen space that using a hardware keyboard affords can be desirable. Opening up the keyboard viewer on my Mac and comparing the layouts of the languages that are included in Apple’s list, I was happy to discover that Italian comes very close to the Danish layout. There are few symbols that are placed differently, but they’re easily remembered, meaning that I can now happily type in English with the benefits of spellchecking and autocorrection.

100 Days of Something

Last year I embarked on a journey of writing exactly 101 words for 101 days. Today I’m on the verge of jumping into something similar, only this time round I’m planning on approaching the project a little more loosely. Although Michael Bierut’s 100 Day Project is based on the idea of repeating a chosen design activity, I’m thinking that my only requirement will be to make something. Whether that means stringing together some words, posting a drawing, putting together an Audulus patch, or some combination of the above, the days will show. I’m also thinking that not everything need be made public.

100 Days of Something: 3

Still at the start of these 100 days and thinking about the nature of the undertaking. Is it making something that’s the important part of it, or does simply posting something count as the same? An action in both cases. And both require clearing a space in the day if they are to take place at all. That might be the most valuable part of the exercise.

Looking at Michael Bierut’s description of the 100 Day Project on Design Observer I noticed that he refers to repeating a “design operation”, whereas in his interview on The Great Discontent he refers to it as a “design action”. The word ‘operation’ reminds me of John Cage – “Nature in its manner of operation”. Chance operations. A use of language that suddenly seems to belong to a different time.

100 Days of Something: 4

Paul Ford published a little article about a site about Brutalist Websites. The discussion on whether the brutalist label is appropriate or not aside, it’s an interesting excursion that includes small interviews with the makers. It reminded me of a Brett Terpstra podcast (back in the days when Systematic was still on 5by5) in which his guest (I don’t remember the name) quips that “CSS is so bourgeois”.

iA tweeted about the beta of their new site today. A move away from the starkness of their current site – which I’ve come to love even though I initially missed the beautiful curves of Oliver Reichenstein’s own typeface when they changed to a special version of Nitti.

100 Days of Something: 5

“Sometimes it Snows in April.” And today, for a brief moment, it did!

Khoi Vinh recently posted some sketches after a first week with the Apple Pencil, and yesterday a portrait of Prince. I’ve noticed quite a few drawings in my Twitter feed since his passing. The same with David Bowie. Drawing as a means of processing the event.

That got me thinking that this was in fact Michael Bierut’s approach for his own initial (private) 100 Day Project after the 9/11 attacks.

Everyone was so shaken up, and I recall wanting to do something therapeutic for myself—something to get in touch with something that had atrophied a little bit. I decided to do a drawing in a notebook every day. To define the goal more, I decided to buy a copy of the New York Times every day, find a photograph in it, and make a drawing based on the photograph.

100 Days of Something: 6

Ableton recently posted a video of Robert Henke’s “Failure=Success” keynote at the Loop summit in Berlin last year. He offers some interesting insights into the (blurred) lines between programming, composition, and performance – and how they might be re-drawn in our digital age.

He closes with a fascinating peek behind the scenes into the making of a 10cc song that etched itself into my mind as a young boy. I never would have guessed – nor will I ever listen it in the same way again.

I’ve huffduffed the talk (with the help of a handy workflow) should you want to listen to it in your podcast player of choice.