Think Blog

Design ideas, wit, and wisdom from Think Brownstone.

Forge Conference: On Making Digital Things

Last Friday, Mark Schuber and I attended the inaugural Forge Conference here in Philadelphia. Forge is described on the site as “a place for makers”, and the roster of speakers and attendees backed this up. Instead of recruiting speakers famous for…speaking…the organizers from O3 World opted to give a voice to practitioners working on the front line of digital innovation. Obviously, makers dedicated to digital media would do well to study the techniques of their peers in more analogue pursuits, but we face some unique challenges given the ephemerality of our output. We need to find ways to cope with … Read more of the post Forge Conference: On Making Digital Things

Great Experiences: Taste of Prague

Great experiences can happen anywhere. While we work primarily in pixels and screens, we can learn a lot by observing the world around us and taking lessons from our daily lives. Sometimes that means the checkout at the grocery store and other times it means a culinary walking tour through one of the world’s most beautiful cities. The Build Up International travel is one of the most rewarding and enjoyable things I think a person (especially an American) can do. It gives you the chance to see all the amazing sights that exist in our world while pulling you out … Read more of the post Great Experiences: Taste of Prague

Our Core Values, Episode II: Be Nice To People

This is the second in a series intended to go deeper on each of our Core Values, started by Brian McIntire last month with Our Core Values, Episode I: Be Excellent (a good precursor to this post). I volunteered to tackle “Be Nice To People,” and talk about why something that might seem benign on the surface was considered worthy to be one of our sacred six.  In the sea of quotes available at your fingertips by any sort of individual on any topic, there sure are plenty to choose from concerning “being nice” and/or “kindness.” The interesting thing is … Read more of the post Our Core Values, Episode II: Be Nice To People

Five Tips to Lowering Your Cost of Information

When it comes to data, more is better. The power is in the numbers—right? Maybe, but at what cost? It’s very easy to get excited about the details and forget about the business goals and objectives when collecting, analyzing, and displaying business information. For every additional question you want to add to a survey or graph on a dashboard, there is a cost—and sometimes at a disproportionate value. The cost of data includes time for respondents to answer a survey question, more data to slice and dice, and more information to wade through before finding answers. Next time you want … Read more of the post Five Tips to Lowering Your Cost of Information

Our Core Values, Episode I: Be Excellent

We recently went through the process of articulating our company’s core values. Guided by Ari Weinzweig’s recipe for writing your guiding principles and Jim Collins’ description of what constitutes a core value, we set out to write down the essential, enduring tenets about which we are so passionate that we would never, under any circumstances, give them up. Articulating our core values was not an exercise in writing about who we want to be. Rather, it was an attempt to describe who we already are—the ways in which we interact with one another every day; the behaviors and values that we Think … Read more of the post Our Core Values, Episode I: Be Excellent