Tag: MIT

Dispatches from the Spry Hive: Week 32

Posted by Ken Moire & filed under Tips.

This post is part of a weekly series featuring the latest buzz around the Spry Hive.

“The important thing in life is not to triumph but to compete.”
– Pierre de Coubertin

User Experience

Help your human audience succeed with these eight psychology tips that can improve your designs.

Screen Shot 2016-08-12 at 1.29.21 PM

John Saito from Dropbox explains perspective in interface design in his article Is this my interface or yours?

A solid overview of what companies are testing when they conduct A/B tests.

Graphic Design

1960 Olympic Logo

Olympic logos are often the source of design controversy, so we were gleeful to see Milton Glaser rate every Olympic logo design in history.

Web Design & Development

WooCommerce is a popular ecommerce solution for WordPress, but the lack of a POS option left some stores needing more. Well, WooCommerce has just announced that it will now accept Square payments, allowing retailers to accept purchases from anywhere.

Site performance is affected by numerous factors, including image optimization, code structure and bloat. Many believe that a content delivery network (CDN) can help improve the performance of your site, but it’s not a silver bullet.

The scalable vector graphic (SVG) has numerous advantages over the traditional PNG or JPG. Chris Coyier drops science of how to correctly treat SVGs for resizing and placement.


The father of the World Wide Web is working on something that could transform the way we interact and share private data on the Internet. Help us TBL, you’re our only hope.


A new trailer for Rogue One: A Star Wars Story has surfaced and it does not disappoint. If you like your movie trailers overly analyzed, check out Wired’s take on it.

Thanks Obama – for the Summer playlist, that is. The White House has shared a Spotify playlist featuring favorite jams from the POTUS himself, so our source in D.C. says.

Apple Campus 2

The latest drone footage of Apple’s Campus 2 revealing the scale of the project simply boggles the mind. Our favorite features include the foam formed underground parking structure, the combination solar and fuel cell energy source powering the entire campus, and the security kiosk shaped like a late model Macbook.

We’ll be back to share more from the Spry Hive next week!

Dispatches from the Spry Hive 2015: Week 45

Posted by James McDonnell & filed under Tips.

Halloween may have been this past weekend, but that didn’t stop the working world. In fact, the holiday provided plenty of inspiration for designers, developers, and, of course, the internet. So, try not to fall out of your seats, and enjoy another week of the Spry Hive.


Superman isn’t the only one who can see through walls anymore, as developers at MIT have harnessed the superpower using wifi.


Source = Naval Research Laboratory

Move aside, Glass. Furthering the legacy of Star Trek, Dr. Jas Sanghera has proven the feasibility of transparent aluminum.

Web & Apps

Step up your internet game with the ultimate Gif dance party.

If you’ve never heard of Basecamp, it’s about time to catch up. As of Nov. 3rd, Basecamp 3 is already available.

Have you been a fan of Snapchat’s sense of anonymity? Well, the company just reserved the rights to store your selfies.

Evidently, after luring customers into using OneDrive with unlimited storage, Microsoft has decided to drop the too good to be true offer, resetting the max limit at 1 Terabyte.


Love the design of historic artifacts? Take a look at the Massimo and Lella Vignelli papers on Tumblr.


Mike Wasowski

Source = Go Monster Project

Acknowledging how creative our kids can be, the designers at Go Monster Project have created some stunning digital renditions of monster drawings from children.


If you haven’t already heard, Drupal 8 will finally be released on November 19th! Join the celebration and find a release party near you.

Bring the weather to your users with Rain & Water Effects.

Interested in learning more about Apple’s cryptography?

Responsiveness is taking over the web, so be sure you keep up on all your CSS, jQuery, and JavaScript.

Front-end development has been, well… developing. So, what do we know now about the community?


Watch out now, studies say your cat may want to kill you!


Before NASA held another major press conference this week, the US Space agency put out an open call for the next generation of astronauts that will guide humanity to Mars.

So, as you can see, the holiday weekend did everything but hinder the week’s productivity. Hopefully you found something worth sharing with friends and family. Don’t forget to stop by next week for another dose of the Spry Hive!

Dispatches from the Spry Hive 2015: Week 42

Posted by James McDonnell & filed under Tips.

While the first debate for Democratic Presidential Candidates took over our feeds this week, a world’s worth of news flew right by! So, sit back, relax, and catch back up with your weekly dose of the Spry Hive.



Boeing shocked the tech world with the lightest metal ever, which happens to be 99.99% air.

Without the help of Comcast, or any other large ISP, the town of Chattanooga, Tennessee now offers internet speeds of 10Gbps!


Use caution with Adobe’s Flash Player, as the company just announced a critical vulnerability in the software.

Following Google Chrome’s lead, Mozilla recently announce that Firefox will stop supporting plugins.

It’s always nice to hear someone own up to their mistakes, especially when they are internet advertisers.


Math class just got a lot more musical with the newest mod for TI graphing calculators.



While it’s no hoverboard, Lexus’ latest design was inspired by origami…and cardboard.

Here are a few UX habits that will aid any designer.

The countdown to Halloween has begun! Get excited with 31 days of your favorite horror characters, illustrated and motion animated.


While Foundation 6 is still in production, Zurb has released a Sass library for custom CSS animations, Motion UI, for free.

Once again attempting to create a more user-friendly experience on the mobile web, Google has announced a new project for developers aptly named Accelerated Mobile Pages.


Ever thought you’d have a shot at graduating from MIT? Well, now you have a better chance than ever, as the university announced their first degree using free online classes.

Forget about water on Mars, astronomers may have just found signs of life in space.

Evidently, some people were surprised to find Microsoft using the Start Menu to display ads. Thankfully, this feature is easily turned off.

And with that, we have caught up on at least a few of the stories that didn’t take center stage this week. Keep preparing for the fast-approaching Halloween and don’t forget to stop by next week for another weekly dose of the Spry Hive!

Dispatches from the Spry Hive 2015: Week 25

Posted by James McDonnell & filed under Tips.

While many people may have been caught up in the excitement of E3 this week, the worlds of technology, design, and the internet kept pumping out announcements of their own. Between Net Neutrality going into law and a few more security breaches, we’ve all had plenty to talk about around the office. So, sit back, relax, and enjoy this week’s Spry Hive!


Before entering the cell-phone market, developing a feature-packed web browser, and becoming  an internet service provider, Google used to be a company simply dedicated to creating the best search engine. They were so successful that their name became a verb synonymous with ‘to search’. Well, this reigning supremacy might finally come to an end as Apple has been slowly preparing their own search engine that aims to one-up Google in every way possible.

The new Net Neutrality laws went into effect exactly one week ago today. In that short amount of time, the FCC feels that it already has enough evidence to charge AT&T $100 million for misleading unlimited data plans. Not only that, but Sprint announced that it will stop throttling customer’s bandwidth to avoid being fined in a similar manner.

This past week the Federal Trade Commission set some intriguing precedent following their first settlement with a failed crowdfunding campaign. Siting a severe mismanagement of funds that led to an incomplete project for investors, the FTC is requiring the irresponsible organizer to repay the vast majority of $120,000 that was crowdfunded.

If you are one of the millions of users saving your passwords through LastPass, you may want to know that the company discovered some suspicious activity this past week. While they are assuring their customers that their passwords are safe, they are recommending that most users change their master password.



Source = Oculus

Just before Microsoft stole the show at E3 with their stunning demo of the Hololens, the company Oculus quietly announced that they are attempting to push virtual reality beyond its visual barrier. Their newest task in the pursuit of creating a legitimately virtual reality seems to be the implementation of physical touch.

This past week a report was released detailing how specific Samsung mobile devices contain a serious security flaw in their Swiftkey keyboard software. The vulnerability, which affects nearly 600 million Galaxy S4, S5, and S6 owners, is most worrisome because users have no way of uninstalling the software.


In an attempt to prevent your website from looking bland and slow as your images are being fetched and loaded, a group of developers has created and released the platform called Gradify. The program takes any image that you upload and generates a gradient based on the images’ most prominent colors, creating a transitioning effect as your site loads.



Source = Manu Cornet/Bonkers World

For the longest time, it would have been crazy to compare the design of Google’s products to those of most other their competitors. Now days, though, thanks to their “all directions” approach to innovation shown above, their design team has thoroughly stepped up their game. According to Fast Company’s Cliff Kuang, Google may have even surpassed the design of Apple software.

Just the other week we were here talking about Adobe’s announcement that they were bringing the ability to create and use multiple art boards in the same file to Photoshop. Well, the time has come with the feature being released alongside a slew of other features in a major update for Creative Cloud.


Have you ever heard of the programming language named Julia that was created and released to the open source community by MIT? Well, if you are interested in developing programs for technical computing, then you’ve got to check out Julia Language (and no, we don’t mean the way our founder speaks). The language provides a comprehensive library of mathematical functions, a dynamic type system, and a slew of other features built for high performance computing.

If you haven’t learned AngularJS yet, then now is your chance! Code Academy now offers a 5-hour online course about how to code using Angular.

Alongside AngularJS, Flexbox Grids have been taking the development world by storm. George Martsoukos of Sitepoint.com has recognized the modules popularity, writing a great article about 3 tool sets that have begun utilizing Flexbox and his experience demoing each tool.


Heinz recently learned a valuable lesson about holding onto domain names and outdated QR codes. Evidently, the company failed to keep a domain registered for a QR code from an old campaign in Germany. Now, scanning the QR code unfortunately leads unsuspecting customers to an adult site.

For those who haven’t heard, the FBI has release a report detailing an investigation into the St. Louis Cardinals organization. The agency claims that a pair of Cardinals officials gained access to player data and scouting reports on the Houston Astros’ closed network that were supposed to be classified and confidential.

And like that, we’ve almost made it to another weekend; a weekend that is packed with both Father’s Day and the Summer Solstice. We hope this busy week’s news and lessons gave you at least one thing to get you through the next week, or maybe even a last minute gift idea for dad. Don’t forget to stop by next week, and, as always, have a spry weekend!