How design can save democracy is an excellent (yet still flawed in my opinion) demonstration of better ballot design created for the New York Times by AIGA’s Ric Grefé and Jessica Friedman Hewitt.
It’s amazing that after encountering countless issues with voting ballots, even the most basic design fundamentals (like oh, say “clear page design”) still aren’t in the vocabulary of our government officials. The US is full of communication experts and graphic designers who would be more than happy to resolve the problem, yet no one seems able to cut through the politics to address this as a non-partisan design issue.
Somehow, clear communication was addressed for nutrition labels, so why not ballots? It’s not rocket science.
Despite it’s lack of kerning, this piece really speaks volumes. The choices in animation really improve in the second half, as the message builds up, when compared to the rather slow start.
I’m comparing this piece not to the GOOD animation from earlier, but to this one piece by Heebok Lee, who currently works at Prologue and was an inspiration to me (not the typeface, but the animation) when I had my fling with animated type:
It’s interesting to see quality animated type come from After Effects but not from Flash. And a little disappointing. Especially considering that there’s no real video in these pieces, and vector type will really improve the quality while keeping size down. The girl effect website itself, sleek as it is, could be a done in the same way as the video. We see type experiments being done here and there in Flash, like this one from a previous post, but hopefully more exciting and moving pieces will show up.
If facebook had only made a movie like this one, my previous post would have been much easier to write. While a great design is suppose to be transparent, my confusion with the redesign of the simplest website (next to our own) delicious.com (bah, the old url was cooler) makes me feel today’s user has no patience to figure everything out on their own. I definitely see the value in editing screen captures and animating layouts to show the features of a site. The time spent seems to be a good trade for increased usability. Too bad delicious didn’t make this video the most accessible thing on the site. As a sidenote, Flickr video may become an interesting platform for pecha-kucha-like content.
If you want more snazziness than simplicity, check out the videos from Good magazine. This one I particularly like. The music is well integrated, and the animations illustrate the rather exhausted information in a refreshing way.
I’m not suggesting this is the future of distributing information. I’d still prefer a wiki. But if it’s something that you want to share with many folks, then why not make it a fun and exciting experience as well.
The video title is “why america is fucked”. I don’t geographically agree because the issue is not only american, alas. In France (for example), I can’t stand those ads using Comic Sans. No, really. The solution is obviously not to use Helvetica of course (btw, watch the movie), but please think about the future vintage !! Will we have to send a terminator to erase Vincent Connare’s mother ?
Seriously though. I personally have issues with the question this poster raises… Yes, design makes the world more beautiful (yay, prettiness!). But guess what? People who don’t get enough to eat don’t care what their soup cans look like.
Kay, there. My cynical moment has passed. Back to making things look mahvelous, dahling.