1. State of the art, project management and documentation¶
From User Centered to Person Directed.
Part of creating this documentation connects back to what I feel is my purpose - to shift the work of design from a user centered model to a person directed model. How can design facilitate others in being directors of their own style; their own workflows; their own community etc. How can we shift away from designing for "users" which in Canadian english has only one other reference which is to people addicted to substances - ironic no? Instead, how can we emphasize the range of humanity around us - designing with people.
Its a far more complex challenge and I love that. I describe this in a talk I gave that emphasizes this point in the context of long term care homes in Canada.
In the video below I describe the system of research, design and delivery of this project:
One step at a time¶
Ok, so you've just started Fabricademy and you like, what the heck - this is confusing and overwhelming. You are correct my friend but I am here to help you out. I'm going to take you through some tips, tricks and shortcuts as you start off to get you on your way.
My footsteps have lead me through the following path:
1: determine communication style 2: create my own directory 3: determine visual style 4: image file managaement 5: updating GitLab
Step one: determine your communication style Figure out how you want to talk about yourself. I use an narrative diary style approach because that's what comes naturally to me - to talk to you as though we're in conversation.
Step two: make your own directory Find your resources and bookmark them. How things connect and where to find them is really confusing in the beginning given the multi-platform, hyperlinking... or not that is the archtecture we use to learn, document and measure our learnings here. Do yourself a favor right now and bookmark some key pages.
Classes This has all of the slides, tutorials and learning material for each week of content. This is also the gateway to your personal site. You'll notice in the upper right hand corner an icon that looks like this
Handbook The handbook describes in detail what tools, software, weekly outcomes and assessment criteria upon which you'll be graded. Here you'll fnd a
NeEval This is where you go to to tick the boxes when you've completed an assigment in order to be assessed by your local instructor
Step 3: determine visual style
Your general site appearance is adjusted within the mkdocs.yml area of your left had panel withiin it you'll find the following panels to allow you to update the general look and feel of your site.
I'm familiar with Adobe InDesign software and so knowing that I'd be uploading gobs of process photos I set up a series of templates that allow me to drop photos into a sequence. This helps me a lot with describing a process without taking up a bunch of visual space.
Step 4: file management I have found that by starting with image organization - i organize my thoughts towards the content. As I accumulate photos throughout the week I dump them here, labeling them with all lowercase in .jpg format then passing them through the bulk size reducer at 60%.
Within the weekly folder I create and "uploads" folder that has the images often re-organized in InDesign such that I can easily bulk upload al of my images to the image folder in gitlab.
Finally, I upload all of my videos, into my vimeo account such that they can be easily referenced when I go to create my site.
**Step 5: updating GitLab Now that I have layout templates and images organized into a narrative I am ready to begin to adjust the GitLab Wed IDE for the week.
In order to start to understand how the code works, my best advice here is to click into your WebIDE, go to your particular week under assignments then open another tab with the webpage opened onn the same week. This will allow you to toggle between the code, and how it visually appears in order to learn in reverse.
For tips on things to add I have found this resource to be very helpful as I develop more confidence with GitLab.
In order to add simply design features to your pages such as headline hierarchy, lists etc please reference the below instructions.
For images I have used specific blocks of code repeatedly as I have found that to be the most efficient and effective method to keep up with the demands of the program. Used in conjunction with Adobe Illustrator I reference the following in order to upload my images:
**Step 6: consider emphasis Most all of my pages have been made by borrowing code from pre-built pages as I see it presenting in the actual webpage. I will be frank here, I am not certain that using Markup will be useful in my future and so I have not invested heavily in learning more about it - my focus is more on storytelling and effective visual documentation.
In Fabricademy you'll be cramming so much information into your brain at the same time that deciding where you put your most effort is critical. Telling your story, helping others to follow in your footsteps - this is most important. Becoming an expert in Markup can come in your weeks of use, so go easy on yourself.
**Step 7: ask for help I started a little late in the program and so I could not have caught up or built out my page without the mentorship and guidance of Paula Franco. As the weeks have progressed and things have unexpectedly disappeared and re-appeared I've used Mattermost to connect with Tech expert Julian in order to troubleshoot and his support has been invaluable.
Completion & Evaluation¶
How do you know your done? Where do you submit for your review?
- Head to the Fabricademy Handbook in order to get a checklist of your submission requirements.
- Use Nueval and check the checkboxes as you complete tasks. This will give you a indication as you move through the program as to your completeness of all assignements.
- Adobe InDesign
- My head and my heart