Refined Design

June 29, 2007 on 6:35 am | In IdBlog, Maps | Add a Comment

Sometimes a tool comes along that’s so elegantly simple you just have to admire it. The developers and designers at Air New Zealand refined the point of this web app to a single question: ‘How far can I go?’ The answer is realized with dollar slider and a map.

air nz slider tool

Details below routes and costs are provided so intuitively that instructions are not needed. Overall, it’s an excellent example of a first-rate information application.

Transparently Google

June 19, 2007 on 5:55 am | In IdBlog, Spin | Add a Comment

Yesterday Google launched what might be their biggest innovation since the search algorithm — the Google Public Policy Blog.

Many large companies have public policy, or government relations, departments. The goals and operations of such departments are typically only known to a handful of top executives and the board of the company. So Google’s airing of boardroom debates is unusual to say the least.

Cynics may say that it’s just more spin and PR. Perhaps, but what if it were an honest record of corporate goals and values? That would be a big step toward transparency in a democracy so heavily influenced by corporate money.

The blog also has a lucid assessment of Network Neutrality penned by a lobbyist named Richard Whitt. It’s good that Google has made its position clear; it would be great to see the telecoms do the same.

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