Any team member who has ever worked with a shared email inbox knows how painful it can be to delegate work efficiently while staying up-to-date with all of the different tasks. Tembo was built to alleviate some of that pain. It's a Chrome extension for Gmail that provides shared thread histories, labels, and alerts — all of which update in real-time across different individual Gmail accounts. Tembo also features a dashboard that allows teams to customize their labels and email templates. The YouTube video is queued up to the part where we show Tembo's features in action. (I talk about the project's technical challenges at the end. We each present for about a minute.)
This hackathon project started out as an exploration of synesthesia. The idea was to upload a song and pass it through different filters to produce high, mid, and low tracks, and then visualize each of those tracks as shapes and colors so that the final "painting" looked like oneofKandinsky'sabstractgeometricworks. But then I realized that it was 2016 and no one has mp3s on a computer anymore. Thankfully, a classmate introduced me to Patatap, which is a collaboration between the media artist Jono Brandel and the music duo Lullatone. Rather than explaining what Patatap is, it's better if you play with it. It's a lot of fun! Anyway, I extended Patatap by adding the ability to record and layer loops. I still like the Kandinsky music visualizer idea though, but I think it would work better as a smartphone app. Now I have a good reason to learn how to make one of those.
Wouldn't it be equally wonderful and terrible if we could buy wishes? Rather than ponder the ramifications of such a world, we built a fanciful e-commerce store that sold wishes. Consumers can do typical consumerly things like search, browse by category, add and remove items from their cart, checkout with a credit card, create and modify their account, sign in with Google, and leave reviews. Meanwhile, administrators can do typical administratorly things like edit orders, moderate reviews, update inventory, and grant admin access. Also, just to make sure that our customers don't get too much of a good thing, we limited them to 3 of each wish.
Remember that timeless game Guess What Number I'm Thinking Of ? The first bootcamp project assigned to our class was to recreate that game while meeting a list of requirements. For example, we had to give feedback on the guesses and optional hints. My version of the game uses color to indicate how close the player is to being correct and gives hints that are either trivia questions or randomly generated algebra equations. I got a kick out of learning how to do new things in CSS, like incorporating my favorite emoji as the cursor when it hovers over the text field and making an animation for when the player wins. It was a simple project but a lot of fun.
I'm currently working through Udacity's Data Analyst Nanodegree (at least the parts I can do for free). The syllabus assumes knowledge of Python, introduces the fundamentals of statistics and data science, and requires the completion of several projects — one of which is to create a data visualization using D3. I already started playing around with D3 and can't wait to make maps and slopegraphs.
Data + Design is a free, Creative Commons-licensed book that introduces data visualization topics using plain language and relatable examples. Everyone who volunteered for this project believes that data visualization is an exciting and powerful way to communicate, so we wanted to create a friendly, inviting resource that encourages people to learn more about dataviz. The chapters I contributed to the most are Perception Deception and Common Visualization Mistakes. But the fun's not done! I love participating in community-driven projects like this, so thanks to a fantastic team of rock stars who translated the book into French, I'm currently working on getting the French version of the book online.
The New York City chapter of Google Developer Group (GDG NYC) hustled to make the 2016 edition of DevFest the best yet. This year's conference featured tech talks, panels, workshops, codelabs, Go training, and a hackathon. I helped out with logistics (mostly signage) and the machine learning codelabs. There were a bunch of great speakers who generously shared their expertise with us, and we had a rockin' good time learning about cloud computing, progressive web apps, machine learning, and more!
On graduation day, Grace Hopper Academy makes the sweet gesture of presenting each student with a class tee shirt. I was nominated to design the shirt, but it was a collaborative effort: we brainstormed different ideas, and the majority voted to create a graphic based on Shepard Fairey's Obey poster. I referenced this photograph to make the image of Grace Hopper in the final design, which is more zoomed out compared to Fairey's portrait of Andre the Giant because we thought Hopper's navy hat represented an important part of her identity. The biggest compliment and complaint about the shirt has been that it inspires envy, so we have to watch out for those who literally want to take the shirt off our backs.
These are the most recent logos I made. You can see them in color and learn more about them here. Do I like logos? Yes. Especially logos that make excellent use of negative space like the famous FedEx logo or the lesser-known Hartford Whalers logo and The Guild of Food Writers logo. I also love logos that have rotational symmetry. My favorite examples are the new Princess Bride logo and the Handy logo. Pretty sure I just won the prize for Most Number of Times "Logo" Appears in a Paragraph.