Organic Information Structure – Shopping (Part 4)

Switch from shopping experience to video experience using Contextual Menu.

Organic Information Structure – Shopping (Part 3)

Transition from "Compare" view to product details.

Organic Information Structure – Shopping (Part 2)

This is how you would compare items in Organic Information Structure (TM).

Organic Information Structure – Shopping (Part 1)

Here is how a shopping experience would look like with Organic Information Structure (TM) and Contextual Menu.


I just thought about buying a jar to keep my grounded coffee instead of keeping it in a bag. Coffee grounds kept getting stuck under my finger nails when I reach down the bag to scoop some out.

It's a little thing, but it seems my life is becoming slowly... permanent – one of few things I've hated the most, right behind the idea of being stuck in the past or left behind.

A quarter

I had a very long day. Working until 3 am last night, working 8 hours at my full time job today, 5-hour long meeting from 5pm to 10pm, and I'm still up at 3 am eating coco puffs with the side of Bulleit -- the whiskey kind, not firearm related. I'm not suicidal ;D

It's been like this for over a year now, just non-stop working around the clock. Sometimes I get panic attacks thinking of all the responsibilities I have, and I feel like just dropping everything to go live in some mountains with unicorns and rainbows, but today, for some reason, I had a flashback of my childhood.

I always played soccer after school. I would play for hours. When I was done, I would wash myself up at the water fountain and drink as much water as I could until I was full, then I would get on a bus, drop a quarter (which was all I had) in the fare box, and sit in my wet, muddy clothes for a couple of hours until the bus dropped me off in my neighborhood, where I would still have to walk for another 30 min to get home.

But one day I had a thought, "what if I get a soda?" Since all I had was a quarter, and the soda was a quarter, it was pretty obvious what would follow the brief moment of sparkling sweet tingly feelings in my throat.

I thought about how long it would take to walk home. I really thought long and hard about it, and I came to a conclusion it wasn't worth it... as I was crushing empty soda can in my hand.

Oh well.

That day I walked 6 hours to get home, kicking that crushed soda can along the way, until I accidentally kicked it off the overpass onto a highway below. I probably ruined someone's nice paint job.

No matter how hard my work gets, I'm always reminded of one thing I know for certain – I will not be poor again. I will not put myself or my family through a situation where they will have to choose between having food on the table and paying for rent, between celebrating birthdays and getting their medication, and between buying a fucking can of soda and taking a bus home.

I'll die at my desk of caffein induced heart attack before I let that shit ever happen again.


Why You Shouldn’t Work For a Startup

There are a lot of reasons why you should quit your day job and work for a startup, but here are some reasons why you shouldn’t. If you’ve been tinkering on the verge, but just haven’t had the courage to leap in the startup world maybe this blog will help. Take notes!

1.)  If you enjoy a routine job. In other words, if you are happy with knowing what your day will be like every time you head to work then it may not be the best choice for you to join a startup. A lot of it could depend on your personality and how you handle surprise situations. There’s no routine in an early stage company, but that’s the glory of it. Anything can happen, at any time, and that brings a level of excitement and adrenaline. Any moment there could be an acquisition or a partnership, or there could even be a shutdown. If you’re lucky enough to jump in early enough then you have a direct influence on the performance of the company and its’ future.

2.)  If you don’t like networking. If you’re not in to meetups and industry events then you may want to reconsider. Some of the best networking events are focused on startups and teams alike. The value of meeting individuals like yourself who love entrepreneurship are impeccable and can truly help spawn great friendships.

3.)  If you have a problem being a team player. Of course no one has this issue right!? Seriously though, it’s take a team effort to run a startup and everyone has to be open to helping each other out if need be. This is a trait that any smart entrepreneur will look for when hiring their team. If you’re more of the type that likes to work on projects alone it’s probably not going to be a good fit.

4.) If you like having a set schedule. If you’re a super worker from 8-5 that’s amazing, but startups don’t have set schedules. There’s always the possibility for things to happen that may require attention so availability is key – this is also where that good team part comes in handy. But really if you’ve found your skill and it’s something you enjoy then it’s not really work anyway, it’s a just a fun hobby that you hope lasts forever.

5.) If you aren’t passionate. If you can’t find passion in at least one thing then don’t waste your time joining a startup. There’s a good chance you won’t gain passion for the startup if you don’t already have passion somewhere else. Even if it’s unrelated, having passion for something you enjoy means you’re willing to work hard at it. And if you’re willing to work hard at a startup, then you may just develop a passion for it too.

If you get the opportunity to join or even develop a startup then you will know what level of dedication it takes from all members to make it a success. The startup journey is much more than an experience; it’s a chance at a better future, an opportunity to turn a risk into a successful investment, a gift of knowledge, and a sequence of exciting possibilities, all merged seamlessly together.

Employ or Be Employed

Well that sounds simple enough right? In a sense it is. You can either work for someone else like most of us, or you can work for yourself. If you’re like me then waking up every day Monday through Friday and being at the office from 8-5 isn’t exactly the appealing route. In fact, the routine of that, along with boring conference calls, and even more boring meetings just gets old. However, I’m super thankful to have a great job and actually really enjoy my job. Even better, is the team I work with, literally some of the funniest people I know.

It just isn’t my long term plan – and most people are well aware of this, even my employer knows. In fact, during my interview they asked me “So if this startup Gestures gets funded or becomes a huge company are you going to leave us” – and I said yes! Why in the world wouldn't I? Either I killed it in that interview or they just found me too damn interesting and honest to pass to not hire. Ha-ha.

But first of all, it’s important that work be fun. If you can’t enjoy what your job is then search for another one. The bills have to get paid so sometimes we take jobs that aren’t ideal or the dream ones but keep searching and getting out there and you’ll eventually land one that you love. I assure you. Network the heck out of yourself, join meetups that interest you, and don’t be afraid to ask someone for a job. There’s absolutely no shame in trying to better yourself. Lord knows I’ve done it several times and it’s landed me jobs. (Even the one I have now was through a lead from a friend)

Or you can take it a step further and go with that other option to work for yourself. Everyone has the right to be an entrepreneur and to pursue that right is perfectly acceptable. If you don’t like being managed with deadlines or projects, or if you just simply have a hard time keeping the excitement with a “regular” job then maybe it’s time to take that leap and give life a curveball of its’ own.

I suppose I can’t preach too much, though, since I am literally writing this blog while I sit in my corporate cubicle lol. I did end up finishing today’s projects so that should account for something right? I could honestly write all day long if they’d let me – just give me a topic and let me loose. I consider it “staying on top of my profession” you know, sort of like a NBA player needs to stay on top of shooting free throws.

I guess the moral of this wonderful piece of writing is to find a career path that excites you. Get out there and be courageous, what do you have to lose?

Mom's Never Emailed

Technology just isn't meant for some people. The other day I asked my mom if she knew how to email, knowing the answer I wasn't all that surprised. "No" she said. Oddly enough she does have an email address! But that was because my stepdad made her one so the school could send important updates regarding my little sister.

When I first think about my mom even attempting to send an email it makes me laugh, she just doesn't have the need and I actually respect that a lot. Not to mention, she has 4 kids and a wonderful husband who would send an email for her if she did end up needing to do so. 

What's even funnier is when I try to talk tech to her - she does a great job listening and trying to pretend to be interested until her face shows me that she's just completely lost lol, that's what moms are for right. I'm curious what would happen if one of us showed her how to access her email and compose one. Would she still find no need in it, or would she actually find it useful. 

She enjoys being outside planting flowers, or swimming, even when it's 100 plus degrees she'll sit outside on the patio for hours just enjoying the radio. There's no Amazon surfing or Facebook scrolling. She has done neither, literally ever. 

She does however, enjoy jamming out to youtube songs and house searching on the occasion. Short story point, the woman who raised me to be who I am is simply awesome, even if she doesn't enjoy technology like I do. :) 


The Cloud...

It used to be so simple of a thought that it would normally just go in one ear and out the other before giving it the time of day. It used to be an item that we would shape creative characters, ships, pets, and buildings out of.  “Look in the cloud” used to mean physically move your head in an upwards motion and look in the sky.

Oh how the days have changed. The Cloud isn’t so simple anymore, in fact, it’s mysterious and ever-changing, evolving into something that is a world of its’ own. Yes. We are talking about the famous iCloud. Amidst the latest celebrity hacking scandal there’s only one thing to think about – what do you not want to be out there?

It’s easy to judge or play the blame game when a celebrity hack of this magnitude takes place, but the truth is they’re human just like me and you, the only difference is they get targeted much more frequently for these privacy hacks.

It’s unfortunate that these things happen, but isn’t technology always going to be hackable? It certainly appears that way. It doesn’t matter what special security features a program or service has, the potential for it to be hacked is always there. It’s a risk we’re willing to take most of the time. Let’s face it – there’s determined people out there.

The best solution is to just be careful and aware that anything is possible. I’d be willing to bet that a majority of those who were recently hacked of their photos weren’t even aware these images were in The Cloud. If they did happen to know that they were being digitally stored in this imaginary space then they probably trusted the service enough and didn’t think much about a massive security breach.

The only individual whose character should be judged right now is the person who revealed all these images – in efforts to gain monetary benefits. It’s a shame he/she doesn’t use their knowledge of internet security to hack something meanwhile or protect others from getting hacked. That too, however, is always going to continue in the realm of internet data and storage.

9/11 The Day We Remember

It took me about 60 seconds to realize what I needed to write about today, and that was still way too long. I feel selfish that I almost started writing about something else without even realizing today is 9/11.

That date will be one of the most significant dates that our future generations will learn about. Most of us still remember exactly what we were doing at that very moment when we first saw or heard that a terrorist attack had happened.

I was in 8th grade. I remember clearly thinking something weird was going on because my classmates kept getting pulled out of school. I went to history class around 10 AM and my teacher just started to cry in the middle of talking. None of us really knew why, we just assumed there was some underlying issue with family.

Afterwards, he decided to dress up in a theatre costume and act out a play because he didn’t feel that day was worth spending on a new lesson. We were totally okay with that too, however, his acting was from some play that no one in class even knew so we all just stared and threw in a fake laugh here and there.

When the bell rang for our 5 minute period before our next class we all stood up, walked into the hallway, looked at each other for a minute, and said "what is going on?" Everyone was confused but we headed to our next class. For me it was Spanish.

This is when I found out the truth behind Mr. MacDonald’s awkward tears and theatrical reenactments. We completely understood why too, even at this age we knew he had tried to avert our minds to something funny and happy because he knew we were about to hear something tragic and terrible.

I don’t think any of my teachers wanted to share the news about the twin towers, I wouldn’t have wanted to either, but by the time I reached Spanish, which was 3rd period – there was no way around it. There were only about 6 people left out of class around 25. We watched anxiously as she pulled the TV cart to the front of the class and plugged it in.

Every station was playing loops of the hijacked planes crashing into the WTC buildings and showing graphic footage of the debris crashing to the ground with people scrambling to safety. I remember feeling two things, fear and compassion. I couldn’t believe what was going on or even fathom how people were able to pull something like this off. There were so many injured and thousands killed in what seemed like a blink of an eye.

It was scary to see and even scarier to think what was going to happen next. I prayed and prayed, and shortly after my mother picked up me and my sisters from school. I think they may have even closed the district early.

My mom kept telling us everything would be okay and to pray for the many, many, families that were affected.

This was a day that America would never forget. It has shaped our nation, proven to us why Freedom is worth fighting for, and will be forever engraved in our memories.


Life Lesson Vol. 2

Life Lesson - Prepare

Like anything, perfection requires preparation and more often than not practice too. If you really think about it, nearly everything we do involves some sort of preparation, from heading to work, to having a child, to writing this very blog. What I’ve come to learn is that it’s just as important to prepare for failures as it is to prepare for successes. But failures shouldn’t have this bad aura associated with them especially when it comes to business because sometimes we actually need them in order to reach those successes that we strive so hard for.

If you’re prepared and steadfast, a failure is simply just a diversion and another route to reach success. Unfortunately, sometimes we take failure and let it beat us down, eventually encouraging us to rethink or give up on our goals. My request to you is that you do the exact opposite, take failure with a grain of salt and use it as a motivator to push you harder towards your dream. Learning from these failures means you’re doing one thing – Preparing, and that in turn will help you avoid taking those same steps that diverted you off course.

Make it a habit to prepare for anything you start, and then, when the time comes that something drastic is inevitable, you’ll know exactly how to react.  Of course there are those situations that you just inevitably can’t prepare for and that’s something everyone will deal with. What you can prepare for, however, is what to do next. It’s no secret life throws curveballs at us – generally shocking or even pissing us off, so know you’re not alone. A little guidance can go a long way.

I’ll be honest; preparing doesn’t come natural to me. It’s probably because I’m fairly disorganized and forgetful, not to mention at times a procrastinator, so believe me when I say it’s beneficial. It’s possible that some people think if you prepare for the worst then you already doubt yourself. That to me couldn’t be any more incorrect. The truth is, preparing for the worst means you’re intelligent enough to realize mistakes happen, and that you’re well aware success depends on unpredicted misfortunes.

Life Lesson Vol. 1

Life Lesson – Learn

It’s 3:04 P.M. – there’s not a lot going on in the office today so naturally I’m thinking of a few things, such as, how I’m starving and can’t wait to eat dinner (the banana and peanuts didn’t cut it for lunch), how I could be doing tons of stuff if I wasn’t here till five, and how I realized that I wasted a lot of time in my past not learning.

It never dawned on me how important learning was when I was younger because A.) I was stubborn and B.) I had no idea where I was heading. Now that I have truly found my passion I realize how I could have utilized all that time doing something towards the path I wanted my future to go. But that’s nothing unique, it takes everyone time to figure out the direction they want to shape their lives and the careers they want to pursue – in fact, some people never get that pinned down and end up settling or create a happiness that fits them.

There wasn’t a whole lot that I was sure of growing up but there was one thing, I knew that I would never settle for ordinary, I was going to use the creative mind I was gifted with (and so were you) and make something of my own. I always liked the idea of entrepreneurship and many times I thought I had great invention ideas (some not so bad either!) or the best businesses to start (can’t say any of these would have panned out), so it’s no surprise the life I’m headed towards is driving me down the road to entrepreneurship. It didn’t matter that the majority of these ideas would have ultimately been a bust, it only mattered that I was thinking out-of-the box and using that creativity.

I clearly remember staying up for hours just researching success stories about those young kids selling companies for millions of dollars and getting a level of inspiration that would never be matched. I knew there wasn’t going to be anything else out there that would interest me anymore than the Game of Entrepreneurship. The question is – why did it take me so long to realize this is where I wanted to be? Was it a fear of failure? Or Rejection? Who knows and more importantly who cares – those things don’t matter one bit when it comes to setting the pace of YOUR life.

It’s about getting yourself where you want to be in life so that you’re happy. This is what I’ve quickly learned at the ripe age of 26, learn everything you can. If there’s something out there that can help you in your path to success then do it. Don’t let the opportunity to learn something valuable pass you up because you don’t have the time or because you don’t see the benefit in it. I’m nowhere near where I plan to take my life, I still have a long way to go and that’s perfectly okay because I now know what it takes to get me there – a network of positive peers and a goal that I create. It’s also very nice to have a spouse that’s so supportive like the one I’m blessed to have.

So in a nutshell – give yourself the gift of knowledge and learn. It doesn’t matter what path you want to take for success as long as you get to where you want to be. A dream is something you encounter involuntary during the presence of sleep, so if you’re dream becomes a thought while awake then it’s not a dream at all anymore, it has already become a possible reality to pursue. 

Unexpected Kind Gesture


Mom asked me to take my grandma to a small concert sponsored by her church. I almost said "no" because I'm currently buried 6 feet under piles of work, but my grandma never really gets to go out, so I reluctantly agreed to go.

...and boy am I glad I went.

It turns out the performer is a world renown violinist name Ji-Hae Park. She's traveled around the world performing at places like Carnegie Hall and Washington Kennedy Center with all the top level symphony orchestras in front of thousands of people. She also recently won a Golden Disk for an album she published with Universal Music and spoke at TED as the keynote speaker.

But somehow she decided to drop by a small church in Dallas and perform in front of less than 50 people, all to raise money for local special needs children (David Christian School).

The concert was very intimate and conversational. She even came down from the stage and walked up to the audience while playing with a big smile on her face.

Her performance was full of passion and excitement. At some point, she even took her shoes off and played barefoot as if to say she wasn't going to let some high heels get in her way.

And most importantly – it was personal.

Between songs, she shared her life stories and her battles with depression. All the pressure from success that she accomplished at an early age drove her into extreme depression where she came very close to death due to starvation and exhaustion.

One night while at her lowest point, a song came to her mind. She didn't know what song it was. She never learned it. She never played it. All she knew was that it overtook her and brought peace to her mind. Then she realized it was a hymn song her mom used to sing in desperation after hours of praying for her health. And that was her turning point.

Thankfully, she's all better now (Just watch her play for 10 seconds, then you will be convinced). Actually, the world is better now with her and her kind gestures in it. I'm just glad to be a part of this amazing experience and to have been able to make a small contribution for a good cause.

I wish her the best on her journey around the world as well as good health to continue doing all the great work she's doing.



P.S. - Don't forget to like her Facebook page and check out her latest albums (May I recommend track 14?).  ;D

The NCJA Policy...

So I'd be willing to guess right about now many of you are questioning what the NCJA Policy is. Well, before I give up that vital piece of information, let me first ask, do you work or have you worked in a corporate setting? Keep in mind corporate doesn't have to mean 1,000 employees it could actually be any number, in my case and the office which I'm currently employed at, that number is 100 give or take a few. 

If the answer to my question is yes then you more than likely already have a mindset what it is I'm about to get into you just may not have realized it yet. This blog is of no particular nature, it's just me and my thoughts, and this policy is by all accounts FICTIONAL, meant to bring a little humor:) 

I've learned a few things about the corporate setting, some good some bad, some right some wrong, in any sense everything in life's a learning experience so it doesn't come to a shock for me that I've created what I believe is the best policy for a workplace - The NCJA Policy.

This four letter acronym should definitely be on every job posting and HR Board, however that clearly wouldn't be allowed lol. NCJA stands for No Corporate Jack Ass. That's right, I don't care if you're CEO or Office Assistant, no one likes a jack ass and no one likes to work with one either. We spend roughly 8 hours a day, Monday through Friday, with the people we work with so it seems pretty plausible to me that we want to surround ourselves with respectful, generous, and caring individuals.

It amazes me to see how people think that because they go to Starbucks or happy hour with SVP's, a CEO, or the owner of a multi-million dollar business that they're automatically on a level of human superiority and can look down from their make believe pedestal to co-workers sitting a mere five feet away.

The thing is, success doesn't need a three letter abbreviation nor does it have to be based on a salary, or a three piece suit. Now don't get me wrong, my personal goals are set pretty high and I'd love to be a CEO or owner of a company but that's because I aim to be an entrepreneur not a kiss ass.

That said, let it be known, if Gestures Inc. reaches the level of success that we're currently hoping and working for, we will do our very best to keep out the CJA's and have one hell of an awesome place to work at! 


GESTURES Journey Guide - La Jolla, CA

One word for La Jolla, CA would be "Unexpected". The reason being because I wasn't expecting the area to be anything like what I was lucky enough to experience. Yes, I wasn't expecting the unexpected. I've heard the city of La Jolla is a beautiful and nice area with fancy homes and retirees. But honestly, that doesn't describe the real parts of La Jolla.  It was literally mind blowing and jaw dropping. There were times where it felt I was on another planet. It wasn't Earth anymore. I'm talking about the planet Naboo from Star Wars! Thanks to Gestures Camera, I was able to capture some breath taking photos at this fantasy / scifi related area.  


I began my journey by hitting it off to WindanSea Beach, which is known for its' appearance in every surfer's movie "Endless Summer". This is a great place for photo shoots, surfing and relaxing. But that's just the top layer of the cake! When you really get down to exploring this beach, with its caves, small water pools, smooth rocks and its' sea life, that's where the center goodness is! The warm and wet sand is soft like a cloud. The cool, not freezing, clear water crashes its refreshing self against the smooth rocks and boulders across the beach. Going through the experience of this "out of this world" beach was truly an eye opener. An eye opener because some people go great lengths to travel to a designated area to find something exciting or exotic when really these places could be right in our backyards.


If you're ever in Southern California, I highly recommend visiting La Jolla, CA. You won't regret it. Venturing off to Children’s Pool and Scripps Pier is just beyond amazing. You'll feel like you're in another world. This is NOT any ordinary beach. This is something you don't  want to miss. This is a place that you will not forget. This is your Gestures Guide, bringing you endless guides you can journey to.


How to resolve Facebook sharing issue on beta

This post is for our beta testers. Because we have sent you multiple versions of the GESTURES Camera app, they can cause conflict with each other when you try to share a photo on Facebook.

In order to resolve this issue, please remove all of the previous versions of GESTURES Camera app, and you must also remove access to the previous GESTURES Camera app on your Facebook as shown below:


Then restart GESTURES camera app and try sharing on Facebook. You will be asked to give permission, and you will be able to do so without problems. :)



Heroes Among Us

A couple of weeks ago I was asked to go take some pictures of a donation drop off for a local charity here in the Dallas area. I was asked by my employer, a healthcare company (we'll leave unnamed for sake of blog) that's based out of Plano, TX.

Over a period of a couple of months we decided to have a friendly competition to raise some money that we could then donate. We went with a "Penny Fundraiser" which if you don't know, is exactly what it sounds like...raising pennies. The motive of the competition (between our office departments) is to raise more pennies than other competing departments without getting "tagged" with silver coins or dollar bills by others. (this makes your points go down but encourages you to throw dollar bills in other department fund jars)

It might sound a tad confusing but in essence your goal is to fill your own jar with pennies and fill your competitors jars with silver coins and dollar bills. Easy enough right :) So anyway, back to my story, after a few weeks we raised quite a bit of money, over $400.00 - which is literally thousands of pennies, lots of quarters, nickels, and dimes, and even a nice chunk of bills.

The winning team got to choose where the money was to be donated and they decided the recipient should be Texas based non-profit, Heroes for Children - a decision that I couldn't be happier with. This organization works non-stop to help children who've been diagnosed with cancer, both financially and socially. The things they do to help people during such a difficult time is nothing short of inspiring. 

At first, I thought I was just going to be there to take a few pictures and then head out, but the Executive Director wanted me and my two colleagues to sit and chat for a few minutes, which we gladly did. That's when it hit me just how amazing this organization and the people who work here are. In a crammed full office not much bigger than a two bedroom apartment this lady asks us to sit and talk, rather than quickly take our donation and return to her desk piled work, she extends her time and friendship to us.

She begins to share intimate moments of past families that they've helped and a few that they're helping right this second and we couldn't help but be thankful. From giving away laptops to allow students to finish school during there hospital stays, to helping with medical bills, and even helping to plan graduation parties and a wedding proposal for one lucky lady, this organization does it all. 

The statistics for cancer among children and young adults is shocking, but to see a handful of people working so diligently to provide a better life for others is incredible. I look forward to being able to help this charity out again in the near future, penny fundraiser and all:)


2 Professors

I have 2 distinct memories from my college years that impacted me and shaped me into who I am (whether I'm a success or failure case is still in question, but that's not important right

First memory took place in a New York taxi cab. I was selected as one of the 55 Most Promising Minority Students by American Advertising Federation in 2006. They invited me to New York, introduced me to the other amazing 54 students, and showed me all the cool agencies in the Big Apple. They even let me stay at The New York Athletic Club for a night. It was a very humbling experience, and I felt like my American dream was getting somewhere.

On the last day of my trip, they invited me to a luncheon where I received a shiny little trophy. After the luncheon, I was in a cab with a professor on the way to the airport. That's when she said the following unforgettable words – "Your portfolio is not that great."

What a great timing to tell me that I sucked.

I was on cloud nine after an amazing 3-day trip in New York. I was ready to get back to school, kick ass, and get an awesome job at an awesome agency like Don Draper in Mad Men, with a Korean accent of course. Then she drops the bomb on me out of the blue. I knew that she wasn't very fond of me or my work. I knew my work wasn't the best in school because I had some talented classmates that could kick my ass all day 'till the cows come home. But what she said really caught me off guard. Since she was of the director of the department that paid for the trip, I guess she had the right to say whatever she wanted, whenever she wanted, and however she wanted...

The next day, I decided to go to TGI Fridays and get drunk (I never really drank before, so I didn't know where else to go). I used my Capital One credit card with a $500 limit to buy myself a full rack of baby back ribs and a few rounds of big ass frozen blue martinis (it tasted like Slurpee). Then I decided to go watch a movie at the theater next door. Only thing available at the time was Nanny McPhee... so I got myself a ticket and walked in... and scared a few kids around me.


...then I decided to go on with my life.

The second memory is a much more ordinary one that took place on the 2nd floor of Meadows School of Art at SMU. At the time, I was on a campaign team to compete in a national advertising competition, and I was tasked to design the campaign book. I was pretty proud of myself for putting together a 20-page long document in a short period of time, and I thought it was darn pretty.

I decided to show it to Professor Ford who was in charge of our campaign team, thinking that I was gonna get nothing but a praise. That's when he said a word that I will probably remember as long as I design something for the rest of my life. He said it was – "horsey."

My English wasn't that great (it still isn't, but whatevs), so I never heard of that word before. I asked him what that meant. He explained that the title/logo on the cover was unnecessarily too big and didn't fit the rest of the clean design I had throughout the book. Then he proceeded to take the mouse, made the title 1/5 of the original size, moved it to a corner, and left the rest of the cover empty.

And that was the start of me becoming a minimalist.

There was no fancy trip to New York, luxurious hotel, expensive lunch, or shiny trophy, but just a simple and honest explanation to why my work was "horsey." He also taught me that minimalistic design doesn't necessarily mean clean design. It could be a blank canvas, beautiful paintings in Sistine Chapel, or even some stupid graffiti on the side of a highway – it's about creating a design that serves a purpose with the least amount of elements. 

I don't think Professor Ford ever really got the credit he deserved at SMU. His title wasn't even "professor" but "instructor," which was stupid. He remained as an adjunct faculty member without much recognition or promotion by the school until the day I graduated. But the students loved him though, and I can definitely speak for one of them. :) 

Oh, and here is one of my portfolio pieces that he liked:


Dead rat in your pocket

Did you know that you have a dead rat in your pocket? Why don't you check it? probably don't have a dead rat in your pocket, so how do you feel? Do you feel like you need it? Do you miss it? The answer is probably "No" (if yes, I would highly recommend seeing a shrink).

People do not miss things that they don't need, especially if they never had it.

This is the answer I give people when they ask me, "If you remove all the buttons from your 'gesture-based' interfaces, wouldn't people complain?"

The people in this generation who grew up with traditional "button-based" interfaces will miss all those tiny little buttons and icons dearly. Some will scream and complain, "It doesn't make sense!!!" And they will claim it's wrong and demand to bring back all the buttons. Just like they are demanding to bring the "Start" button back into Windows 8.

But unfortunately, all of their confused screaming and yelling don't make them right. And It doesn't make button-based interfaces better than gesture-based interfaces.

The reality is that gestures are much easier to learn than buttons because they are more natural and closer to the conventions of our reality. Gesture-based interfaces are much more efficient and effortless because they allow us to directly interact with our digital world instead of telling a bunch of buttons to do it for us. Using a button is like telling a butler who's in your backyard to come over and change the TV channel when you are sitting next to the TV. 

The people in the next generation will be born into a world of gesture-based interfaces, and they will learn how to use them like we learned how to use our mouse, keyboard, and all those buttons in Microsoft Word without complaining much. And they will never miss the button-based interfaces because they never had it and they will never feel the need for it.