The Noun Project

The Noun Project’s mission is to share, celebrate, and enhance the world’s visual language. The goal is to collect and organize all the symbols that form our language into one easy-to-use online library that can be accessed by anyone. All the symbols on their site are completely free to download, and can be used for design projects, architecture presentations, art pieces – just about anything. The folks behind The Noun Project think a visual language that can be understood by all cultures and people is a pretty amazing thing. I fully agree.

Watch a video about their project over on Kickstarter.

(thank you Edward)

Awesome Highlighter

In one of my earlier posts today, I mentioned the new highlighting functionality that the NYTimes added to their articles. In the comments Justin pointed me the It lets you highlight text on web pages and then gives you a small link to the highlighted page so you can easily share it.

Try it with this link where I highlighted my Holiday Gift Guide Call Out.

What a useful tool when collaborating with others. Thank you Justin!

Office Music Democratizer

There have been many attempts at trying to make office music a democracy, but most involve a complex system that people ignore, or people taking turns running the jukebox. LastFM and Pandora are great solutions (they learn from what you like/hate), but they both lack an easy and public way for everyone to have their say. came up with a sleek solution: The Office Music Democratizer. Love it, Hate it, just hit the pretty button on the wall. Needless to say I would love this for studiomates.

What are you worth?

Interesting post by Whitney Hess: “What are you worth?”

What you’re worth is a question only you can answer. It’s loosely a combination of your ability, experience, and instinct. I don’t believe any of these three can be objectively measured, therefore it’s your responsibility to make a subjective assessment and assign a dollar amount to it.

Some people charge by the hour, but I won’t. If my worth requires more time to shine through, the client should not be penalized. But if my worth gets me to the answer faster, why should I be penalized?

Fancy Custom Dock Icons

Two readers asked me about Jessica Hische’s fancy custom doc icons that they spotted in an earlier post today. She created them herself, you can download them here and watch the video below explaining how to change your dock icons.

How to Change your Dock Icons from Jessica Hische on Vimeo.

Jessica is one talented lady. We miss her here in studiomates land.

Please note: When sh says “left click” in the video she really mean “right click”.)


poofHQ is an online proofing tool that allows you to manage feedback and approval of design work.

proofHQ recently extended the functionality to allow proofing of audio visual files, which is a huge step forwards and makes it one of a kind in the market. This means that any agencies or freelancers creating short website movies or interactive ads can now get feedback online from their clients with comments displayed at the relevant time within the file.

I am currently on a one-year-client-work-sabbatical, otherwise I would give proofHQ a try. Watch the demo below:

ProofHQ Demo from ProofHQ on Vimeo.

Dropbox Toolkit & Guide

AppStorm posted an extensive Dropbox Toolkit & Guide. I’ll definitely have to look into some of the options, especially the syncing of my iTunes Library.

(via @rufusd) is an ingenious, simple service for anyone working on UI designs that entail ads. A total timesaver.

(thank you Andy)


Shelley Bernstein, today’s Brooklyn Beta Keynote speaker, mentioned ConnectTweet in her presentation today. Heading everything Social Media at the Brooklyn Museum, Shelley started using ConnectTweet to make sure that the Brooklyn Museum Twitter stream stays personal and interesting. (Nothing worse than an institution twitter stream that is taken over by boring marketing trolls.)

When you look at the Brooklyn Museum Twitter stream you notice that every tweet has a name attached to it, that then takes you to their personal stream.

I think this is a *fantastic* solution for companies/institutions that are trying to solve the ‘who should own our twitter stream dilemma’. Or as ConnectTweet put it on their site:

ConnectTweet allows the contributors to your central Twitter stream to continue to use their personal accounts that they are familiar with, no new logins to remember. This approach also allows your organization’s followers to discover the Twitter streams of the unique individuals that make up your company.


Loosecubes is a community of independent people building a global network of shared workspaces. They bring together people who have great space and people who want to work in it.

At Loosecubes, they want to change the way people work. Their members need the flexibility to work at home sometimes and in an office sometimes. They want the freedom to travel anywhere in the world and not have to worry about finding an internet connection and some intelligent people. They don’t think that Loosecubes hosts will participate just to make some extra money. They think they will participate because members are people they want to get to know. They’ll participate because they believe, that the only way to be truly independent work-wise is to have great workspace available when you need it – without paying an arm and a leg.

Find a big space and invite your friends and colleagues to work together. Spend a month coworking or a few weeks in another country.

Fantastic idea. We might just have to expand and put some desks up on Loosecubes here at swissmiss studio.


Weightshift just launched Interhoods, a real-world directory for designers and developers. The sign up process is incredibly simple: Log in with your Dribbble or Github accounts and identify your location in New York, San Francsico or Chicago (more cities coming soon). I agree with Khoi, it’s cool to be able to see who is physically near you, neighborhood by neighborhood, and will be even more useful if it achieves critical mass. Well done, Naz and Scott!

Check it out and register your location at

(via subtraction)

Image Search Tools

This Image Search Tools post over at one of my favorite blogs called made me look. (If you’re not already subscribed to Maria Popova’s avalanche of awesomeness, please do so.)

CompFight is a Flickr search tool that also also doubles as a visual inspiration engine. It lets you search based on tag or text, spitting out a pleasant wall of thumbnails. Particularly useful: The CreativeCommons search option, which filters results by image rights license type.

7 Image Search Tools That Will Change Your Life


Tell Gridulator your web-layout width and the number of columns you want, and it’ll spit back all the possible grids that have nice, round integers. Just the thing for pixel-based designfolk. There are inline previews, courtesy of the canvas element, and when you’re all set Gridulator can crank out full-size PNGs for you, ready for use in your CSS, Photoshop docs, or what have you. And there’s full keyboard control for you snazzy power users.

(thank you zoya)


We all know the scenario, you just got back from your gathering of professionals and you want to connect with all of the people that you met. So you pull out your stack of cards and you go through your social network of choice searching for each one by one. Or, you were at an event and ran out of cards, or forgot them, which happens a lot to me. Fear no longer, Contxts is here to help!

Instead of giving your new friend your printed business card how about you, save a tree and, txt them your virtual one. This action automatically places them in your online contact list and if they have a profile on you both are connected. There are two ways to connect with another person. Regardless of whether they have a profile on contxts or not you can exchange your credentials.

From your phone, you txt “send 3034759204” to 50500 (where 3034759204 is your recipients 10 digit number): Your recipient will receive all of your contact information.


Your contact txts “username” to 50500 on their phone: You will receive a request confirmation (unless you have it turned off). Upon accepting, your contact will receive your information.

Your txt business card is not just an exchange of credentials. It’s also a request to connect profiles through our network. Each and every contact that you make is added to your virtual rolodex. From here you get access to whatever additional information they provide (flickr, twitter, linked-in).If the person that you are connecting with doesn’t have a profile yet – no problem. When they do create a profile all of their information in your rolodex is automatically updated.

Want to give it a try? Get my info by texting SWISSMISS to 50500.

(via jason santa maria)

Digital Tools helping in going Paperless

Based on my question from two days ago, I would like take the conversation a step further by asking the following:

What tools do you use (or know of) that help us in the quest to go digital and say goodbye to paper?

Here are some of the ones I use on a daily basis:

JotNot iPhone App, basically a scanner in your pocket. Email your photos as a PDF, back them up with various different services like Evernote or fax them. Fantastic app, highly recommend it to turn that receipt, that you might otherwise lose, into a pdf and store it in your files.

Don’t own one yet, but it’s on my wishlist: Neat Receipts Scanner and Filing Software.

Online based Project Management Tool Basecamp keeps me from printing out documents, knowing they are all up there in the cloud, always accessible.

Dropbox. Best $10 I spend every month. All my files, always synced on my various computers, at all times. As well always accessible on my iPhone and iPad. I have all my files on me at all times, at a click of a button. No need to print anything. Ever.

Google Docs. I used to bring a print out of my Class Rooster to class every week to keep track of attending students. No longer. I now log onto my Google Docs account while in class, check the boxes and save. Voila. Done.

What services do you use? Or dream of? What services does your company use to help you go digital?


FollowUpThen is made for people that email people like me. (Yes, I admit it.) It’s a free and easy email reminder service. On your next email just include [email protected] and they will follow up after the time interval you specify. No Account Required.

(via corey)

Rainbow Office

Designed by Dutch architecture firm Hofman Dujardin, the DLA Piper office is a playful space intended to accentuate the variations in sunlight throughout a typical working day. What does that mean? The side of the building that receives the most sunlight is balanced with cooler tones, while the side that receives the least is compensated with warm tones. Meanwhile, the giant gradient of carpet connects the four main meeting rooms, while also creating a simple and clear sense of orientation within the building.

I am pretty sure this will make my studiomate Jessi’s head explode. (She’s the rainbow birthday lady)

(Thank you Rion!)

Gmail Priority Inbox

Email is great, except when there’s too much of it. Gmail is rolling out a new feature today, called Priority Inbox. It automatically identifies your important email and separates it out from everything else, so you can focus on what really matters.

Gmail has always been pretty good at filtering junk mail into the “spam” folder. But today, in addition to spam, people get a lot of mail that isn’t outright junk but isn’t very important—bologna, or “bacn.” So they’ve evolved Gmail’s filter to address this problem and extended it to not only classify outright spam, but also to help users separate this “bologna” from the important stuff. In a way, Priority Inbox is like your personal assistant, helping you focus on the messages that matter without requiring you to set up complex rules.

As messages come in, Gmail automatically flags some of them as important. Gmail uses a variety of signals to predict which messages are important, including the people you email most (if you email Bob a lot, a message from Bob is probably important) and which messages you open and reply to (these are likely more important than the ones you skip over). And as you use Gmail, it will get better at categorizing messages for you. You can help it get better by clicking the or buttons at the top of the inbox to correctly mark a conversation as important or not important. (You can even set up filters to always mark certain things important or unimportant, or rearrange and customize the three inbox sections.)

Priority Inbox will be rolling out to all Gmail users, including those of you who use Google Apps, over the next week or so. Once you see the “New! Priority Inbox” link in the top right corner of your Gmail account (or the new Priority Inbox tab in Gmail Settings), take a look.

Email overload? Try Priority Inbox

Can’t wait to try this. Patiently waiting…

Interactive Sketching Notation 0.1

The interactive sketching notation is an emerging visual language which affords the representation of interface states and event-based user actions. Through a few simple and standardized rules, what the user sees (drawn in greys and blacks) and does (drawn in red) are unified into a coherent sketching system. This unification of both interface and use, intends to enable designers to tell more powerful stories of interaction.

Hat tip to by Jakub Linowski for creating and *sharing*!

(via Free Wireframing Kits, UI Design Kits, PDFs and Resources on SmashingMagazine)

Unsuck-it is here to save us from terrible business jargon.

(via bblinks)

Call Phones From Gmail

Google just announced a new feature: Starting today, you can call any phone right from Gmail.

Calls to the U.S. and Canada will be free for at least the rest of the year and calls to other countries will be billed at our very low rates.

Dialing a phone number works just like a normal phone. Just click “Call phone” at the top of your chat list and dial a number or enter a contact’s name. If you have a Google Voice phone number, calls made from Gmail will display this number as the outbound caller ID.

For more information, visit

Plantly – this is the video on its main page from amit pitaru on Vimeo.

(via bmdesign)


Pictos are Drew Wilson’s hand crafted, infinitely scalable and royalty-free icons for user interface designers.

Every Time Zone

A handy little tool for checking timezones around the world. Excellent for meeting planning.

(via @aaron)