Christina Warren

Senior Cloud Advocate, Microsoft Joined almost 9 years ago

  • 1 story
  • Posted to What laptop is the best for designers?, Aug 21, 2014

    I think the 13-inch rMBP (with 16GB of RAM) is a pretty bad-ass machine. Yes, I love the tricked-out 15-inch rMBP with dedicated GPU, love it -- but if you have to be portable at all, it really does add a lot of bulk. Now, if you are mostly plugged in, that plus a nice 27-inch monitor (Thunderbolt Display or a 4K screen, depending on what you're doing) is awesomely badass.

    As for Windows-based alternatives, you can custom configure some to be quite good, but you still face the software issue. Still, of the best Windows laptops I've tested in the last year, the Surface Pro 3 is quite good. It has a built-in pen, the only shame is that Wacom no longer does the input and as a result, it isn't quite as precise (with pressure points anyway) as it was when Wacom did it. Still works quite well and Photoshop CC 2014 support is coming.

    Some of the higher-end Zenbooks are good too.

    Still, for my money, I'd get a rMBP, with 16GB of RAM. You can find ways of upgrading the hard drive after the fact (OWC sells aftermarket SSDs), but the RAM is soldered in at time of purchase. Go ahead and max out now. That'll especially come in handy if you're dealing with massive Photoshop, InDesign, Illustrator or Sketch files -- not to mention if you get into any motion graphics.

    0 points
  • Posted to MIUI 6 vs iOS 7, in reply to Jesse Bennett-Chamberlain , Aug 20, 2014

    Yeah I scaled them down from 1080x1920 to closer to 640x1136 and then scaled the side-by-side down to be about 1000 pixels across (so about 500px per screenshot), but I kept the aspect ratio the same.

    If I'd had access to 720x1080 assets, I would have happily used those instead.

    1 point
  • Posted to Ustwo's Sketch Resources, Aug 20, 2014


    0 points
  • Posted to MIUI 6 vs iOS 7, in reply to Abhishek Suresh , Aug 20, 2014

    "A bitch of a criticizer?" Really? Really? I sure hope you didn't just call me a bitch.

    As I've said in other comments, design patterns and inspiration are one thing. Even blatant copies can be ok in the context of an amateur or fan. It IS more problematic when the ripoff is from a major company.

    Stealing is good -- and even necessary. But the best stealing takes the best parts of what your are stealing and makes it into something that can still successfully stand on its own.

    In any other art form, this type of non-acknowledged aping is judged and judged harshly. Painters who just paint knock-off Monet's were spurned and outcast, whereas those that adapted the technique but not every aspect of the style/work are considered part of a broader movement.

    In fashion, taking cues from other designers and fashion houses and color palettes is what happens - but the closer the re-appropriation, the lower on the food change a label or designer becomes.

    And if you think those communities aren't critical of the copiers as we are in technology, you've clearly never bothered to look at the much broader design community.

    And that's the point. Xiaomi and Samsung are positioning themselves as being on the same level of Apple (or fuck Apple, look at Xiaomi's blatant HTC and Windows Phone ripoffs), yet they (Xiaomi especially) consistently act at the same level as the no-name knockoffs you find on a street corner. And that IS disappointing because the company is clearly filled with smart, talented and creative people.

    Taking the copying down a notch and going after a UI pattern and not a color palette, UI pattern, and brand assets would likely yield something that would be just as attractive -- if not more so -- and so indicate that they are more than just a street vendor selling fake Birkin bags in Chinatown.

    7 points
  • Posted to MIUI 6 vs iOS 7, in reply to Patrick Smith , Aug 20, 2014

    I stand by that, especially in the notification overlays and some of the animations. It ceases to be an inspired design pattern and goes into full-on mimicry.

    And we can debate about the validity of that approach, but if this was done to a painting or to a typeface, plenty of people would be up in arms.

    And I agree some of the designs are improvements. My question is, what if that very clear talent was applied in a way that isn't aping everything down the to window sizing for app switching and shape of the record action or color of the calendar.

    What if the pattern was taken, but the application had its own look. Would that not be better for everyone?

    You don't copy everything and close as the streaking number 6 in the announcement for the OS (look at the rainbow colored 6, compare to the rainbow 7 from last year) if you aren't trying to elicit a direct comparison or insinuate that you are comparable and equivalent to the existing product. And to me, that undermines the talent of the people actually working there.

    A skin that replicates another system is one thing as a hobby. It's another entirely if you're a major company who is trying to sell your own brand.

    3 points
  • Posted to MIUI 6 vs iOS 7, in reply to Sacha Greif , Aug 20, 2014

    It's funny, I called-out Everything is a Remix in my text. And I think you nailed the difference. There isn't a lot of acknowledged homage, it's just shameless aping buried between excuses from the one English-speaking exec who argues that they aren't even remixing. And I think there is also the argument that this is less a remix than a facsimile. It's true the facsimile might be better in some cases, but I'm less sure they've created a new work that can stand on its own, whereas the Beastie Boys clearly have used samples to make something they is greater than the sum of their parts.

    But it's a good thought.

    I do think tho they we have to distinguish between design patterns and wholesale mimicry. The former has a very important place, the latter is more problematic, even if it still has validity in a certain context.

    0 points
  • Posted to MIUI 6 vs iOS 7, Aug 20, 2014

    So here's my question, since many of is obviously think that some of the work is actually an improvement of iOS 7/8 (for some apps I think it IS better - others not as much), is that totally diluted from the fact that this is such a shameless rip-off?

    0 points
  • Posted to MIUI 6 vs iOS 7, Aug 20, 2014

    @Andreas - agreed on all points! As for the email...yeah. I'm really bad at email. Really bad.

    0 points
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