Today marks the 58th annual Administrative Professionals Day, the Wednesday of the last full week of April (Administrative Professionals Week). The office holiday began in 1952 as National Secretaries Week to “recognize secretaries for their contributions in the workplace, and to attract people to secretarial/administrative careers.” Magnum salutes the world’s administrative professionals while Melonyce McAfee rants against the holiday.
A beautiful gallery made up of 21 photos, mostly black and white and from the 1960-1970s. Scenes of office life. Lovely. (Thanks to @ironicsans).
“Every commercial product which competes directly with an Apple product (particularly the iPhone) gives me (and many others) the distinct impression that “where it is original, it is not good, and where it is good, it is not original.”—
I’ve had Cameron’s site in my must-read bookmarks folder since maybe 2006. I very rarely commented on his thoughtful articles, but I’ve always respected him and his work. I remember printing his observations and lessons learnt on freelancing on PDF files and reading them every now and then. As a freelancer myself (albeit in another field), I found a lot of useful pieces of advice in Cameron’s posts. Just take a look at his site’s archives — it’s a gold mine.
The Colosseo Letterpress poster has been an ongoing stealth project for more than a year. I find these posts in Cameron’s archives to be relevant if you want to have hints about the project:
I’m not being appreciative of Cameron and his work just because there’s an iPad giveaway going on (the so-called Cameron Moll Colosseo iPad Martian Giveaway). I’m writing this because I mostly want to let you know about the Colosseo letterpress. I was already preparing a brief post when Cameron announced the poster’s availability, and before he announced the iPad giveaways. But then days passed, I was busy, my articles’ backlog accumulated (I maintain many blogs, in English and Italian), and here we are. There are some places in the world that have become so iconic you’re just tired of looking at them and at some image of them: the Eiffel Tower, the Pyramids, the Taj Mahal, the Great Wall of China, the Statue of Liberty, the Big Ben, to name a few… and of course the Coliseum in Rome. Cameron’s work on this last icon made me look at it with fresh eyes for once, and the poster is really an original take on such an overused image. It’s not cheap, but consider the purchase, especially if you love art, modern design and typography.
Oh, and what about that “martian”? It’s a reference to Cameron’s Contest #3, the “Martian” Poster giveaway.
But ‘martian’ also pertains to Mars the Roman god of war, son of Juno and Jupiter, lover of Venus. As the Wikipedia reminds us, He was the most prominent of the military gods that were worshipped by the Roman legions. The martial Romans considered him second in importance only to Jupiter (their main god). His festivals were held in March (named for him) and October. As the word Mars has no Indo-European derivation, it is most likely the Latinised form of the agricultural Etruscan god Maris. Initially Mars was a Roman god of fertility and vegetation and a protector of cattle, fields and boundaries and farmers. In the second century BC, the conservative Cato the Elder advised “For your cattle, for them to be healthy, make this sacrifice to Mars Silvanus you must make this sacrifice each year”. Mars later became associated with battle as the growing Roman Empire began to expand, and he came to be identified with the Greek god Ares. Unlike his Greek counterpart, Mars was generally revered and rivaled Jupiter as the most honoured god. He was also the tutelary god of the city of Rome. As he was regarded as the legendary father of Rome’s founder, Romulus, it was believed that all Romans were descendants of Martians.
So, as you can see, there is a certain link between the Coliseum, Rome and a martian.
I think it’s worth reposting here what I wrote earlier today in a message to the NewtonTalk mailing list:
Comparing the iPad and the Newton doesn’t make much sense to me. When the differences between two devices amount to more than their similarities, what’s the point? “Can the iPad replace the Newton?”, “Is the iPad a successor of the Newton?” — questions like these are somewhat misleading for me. There are things the iPad does better than the Newton, and things that the Newton does better than the iPad. When I bought my iPhone 3G in 2008, I didn’t decommission my MP2100 or my eMate, and when eventually I’ll buy an iPad, I surely won’t put them away.
All these devices are specific tools for me, each with its strengths and shortcomings. When I finally get my iPad, of course I won’t leave home with a heavy bag carrying ALL of my mobile devices (iPhone, MP2100, iPad and MacBook Pro), but based on what I plan to do off-site, I’ll pick the tool(s) most suited to the task at hand. The iPhone: always in a pocket. Do I need to use specific Mac programs and use optical media and generally do complex things? I’ll bring the MacBook Pro. Do I need to do lots of Web browsing (for research), lots of emailing, perhaps read a bit, and maybe write a couple of documents? The MacBook Pro is overkill; doing that on the iPhone would be too impractical; iPad, there you go. Do I need to take a lot of notes, keep on with my personal projects and glossaries, draw sketches and organise my schedule? Nothing beats my MP2100 for this, so that’s what I’ll bring with me.
The point is: each one of those 4 devices excels at some tasks and is more impractical at others. It’s evident I can’t have everything I want in one device and one only. So my logic is simply this: device follows task. If I take advantage of the strengths of each of those 4 devices, I win and I’m productive (or I have the best fun, according to what I’m doing).
I don’t understand why I should accessorise an iPad to reproduce my Newton workflow in some (lesser) way — I know I’m going to be disappointed. The only way I’m going to abandon my Newtons is if a better Newton is introduced. Something that really works like a Newton, supports the Newton’s HWR and pen input, and has a similar OS concept and applications. I see no such product, so I simply keep using my Newtons. The iPhone and iPad are certainly better for all things requiring modern, built-in technologies, but they still don’t cover everything I do with my Newtons.
So, do I try to use them for tasks I do way better on my Newtons anyway, or I just make the most of each without having to ‘abandon’ anything? You know my answer. Your mileage may vary.