Logo Pollution

Andrew Kim:

I hoped that the Lumia 900 would be the phone I have been dreaming about. Then disaster struck. Aside from the issue of its size, it had 3 logos on its face. 3 is 3 too many. The problem with Windows Phone is with its inherent logo pollution. Nokia puts on a logo to say it’s their phone. Then at&t slaps one on. Then we also get a horrendous Windows logo.

New Yorker’s David Remnick on the iPad


The iPad on the other hand and its future permutations I think it’s an exquisite way to read the magazine. And we now have 200,000 people who are accessing it that way and 50,000 additional subscribers. It’s been a good business; it’s also beautiful, which is a lot more important to me.

Image Sensor Size Matters

via PetaPixel. Roger Cicala, LensRentals:

But then we get into all of these fractional-inch-type-measurements for the smaller sensors. That measurement system originated in ancient times (the 1950s to 1980s) when vacuum tubes were used instead of CCD or CMOS sensors in video and television cameras. The image sensor was, in those days, referred to in terms of the outside diameter of the vacuum tube that contained it.

Why do manufacturers keep using such an archaic measurement? Because it helps them lie to you, of course. If you do the math 1/2.7 equals 0.37 inches, which equals 9.39 mm. But if you look at the chart above you’ll see that a 1/2.7″ sensor actually has a diagonal of 6.7 mm. Why? Because, of course, a thick glass tube used to surround the sensors. So they calculate the sensor size as if the glass tube was still included. Makes perfect sense to a marketing person who wants to make their sensor seem larger than it is. What sounds better: 1/2.7″ or ‘less than 10% the size of a full frame sensor’?

Not surprising marketing folks would resort to this. I would like to see these specifications instead of some bogus diagonal length:

  • Image sensor area in terms of square millimeters
  • The pixel format, aspect ratio, and the number of pixels in the image sensor
  • The resulting size of the pixels in square millimeters

You Cannot Buy Innovation

Horace Dediu, Dirk Schmidt:

Finally, we should look at the payoff from R&D spending over the last five years. R&D growth should result in margin improvement, but does it?

Of our sample, only three companies have achieved sales growth AND simultaneous margin improvement over the last five years. But while Microsoft and Dell have achieved sales growth and margin improvement slightly above zero, Apple has improved its bottom line by 13 percentage points and its top line by an average rate of 45%.

The types of innovation are different. Apple’s focus is on developing an efficient supply chain for the long term, and manufacturing processes that allow continued refinements toward design simplicity, like the sleep indicator on the MacBook Pro.

European Commission to Investigate Samsung for Unfair Use of Mobile Telephony Patents


In 2011, Samsung sought injunctive relief in various Member States’ courts against competing mobile device makers based on alleged infringements of certain of its patent rights which it has declared essential to implement European mobile telephony standards. The Commission will investigate, in particular, whether in doing so Samsung has failed to honour its irrevocable commitment given in 1998 to the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) to license any standard essential patents relating to European mobile telephony standards on fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory (FRAND) terms. The Commission will examine whether such behaviour amounts to an abuse of a dominant position prohibited by Article 102 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the EU (TFEU).

In regards to the tit-for-tat between Apple and Samsung:

Apple claims that even though the iPhone was released back in 2007, it didn’t receive a licensing offer until after Samsung had already sued Apple. The exact terms of the offer have not been made public, but Apple classifies it as “manifestly not FRAND.”

A big government institution like the European Commission on Samsung’s back will weigh the company down. Better to offer its mobile telephony license to Apple on FRAND terms. Even then Apple will most likely continue going after Android OEMs, especially Samsung.

To me Android is much like Windows in that the look and feel has been copied heavily from Apple. Losing the lawsuit against Microsoft had a devastating effect on Apple. Microsoft continued implementing Apple-like elements into Windows and grew into an operating systems monopoly. To Apple history must not repeat itself in the mobile operating system space. There is one major difference between the old Apple and the new: a US$100 billion war chest.

Sponsor: Gridbooks – By designers, for designers

My thanks to Gridbooks for sponsoring DisplayBlog. Designing an ad that stands out from the noise in this day and age can be difficult. It all starts with an idea and before that idea can be seen it should be conceived on paper. As a digital artist, it is your job to create something that gets noticed and Gridbooks will help you create your best.

Gridbooks’ featured product – The Adbook – utilizes a fifteen point dot grid that divides into two, four, or six columns. It comes equipped with all standard templates for web ads, as well as space for notes and sketches. With such a versatile book, you are able to cater to the needs of your client – no matter how big or small. Adding to the flexibility, the AdBook features a unique ambidextrous design that allows left-handed users to sketch without crossing the coil. If coils are not your thing, then turn to the AdBook’s smaller sibling – the AdPad, which features the same grid layout, sans coil.

Distinguished designers need to execute their work both creatively and efficiently, and Gridbooks is a tool that will enhance their design process. Sizing, sketching, and storyboarding has never been easier – made by designers, for designers. Whether you are a digital designer looking to make the most out of your ideas or an advertising art director in dire need of some organization, Gridbooks are an amazing way to help you take your work from concept to reality.

Quality design requires quality tools: Gridbooks.

Samsung Wants Your Love

Ina Fried, AllThingsD:

As head of marketing for the Korean electronics maker, Lee said she wants to figure out “how I can engage with consumers from the bottom of their heart, and not just be a big and functional and rational and reasonable brand.”

Lee, who worked for cosmetics brands L’Oreal and Lancome before joining Samsung four and a half years ago, said she wants consumers to love Samsung, to be obsessed with the company and its products.

First, stop making stupid commercials. Second, stop copying. Third, be curious about what makes people tick and work with world class people like Lee Clow who has a deep understanding of people. Follow those three steps and I think Samsung should get rolling in the right direction. As for love, try not to be too desperate, it isn’t attractive.

MSN Visualizer


Simply select a song and our Visualizer app will browse Flickr for a relevant photo to match with the song lyric.

Photos + music. What a great combination. Two caveats: One, if you listen to songs with repetitive lyrics expect repetitive photos. Two, a fast Internet connection is recommended otherwise getting to the next song will take some time.