Wednesday, 2 December 2009

Assignment 4: Reading And Reviewing

Mind Map For "Careers For Financial Mavens And Other Money Movers"
Mind Map For " Law OF The Few"

Assignment 4: Reading And Reviewing

Careers for financial mavens and other money movers is a self-help book written by Marjorie Eberts and Margaret Gisler. This book aims to encourage people who have a certain interest in money into the right job. “Money and the world of finance fascinate them”. These people are referred to as financial mavens.

Although the book may be helpful for some people, it makes a lot of assumptions. As I looked in depth into the first chapter ”Careers For Financial Mavens” I began to notice a severe lack of evidence supporting the books claims. It states, “ The United States government spends trillions of dollars running the country”. The authors do not state where they received this information from; therefore the reader cannot trust this information. It also says “General Motors and Coca Cola earn billions from selling their products”. This is another assumption and should have been backed up by some basic research.

The entire book is based entirely on one assumption in particular; that every person who is a “Financial Maven” “would like to peruse a career that involves working with money in some way. This simply is not true for all people who find themselves being labeled a “financial maven”.

The book depicts “financial mavens” in an extremely stereotypical way, stating, “As children, financial mavens and other money movers counted pennies and actually saved money in their piggy banks.” It says that they “delight in allocating their funds” and even says “they would like to peruse a carrier that involves working with money in some way”. The authors have not quoted any research they have done to prove this extreme generalization.

Towards the end of this chapter the authors advise people that they should look for work in many different ways and say “In this age of computers, more and more people are finding jobs by going online”. While this is a great piece of advice because research has shown it to be true, the authors should have quoted some evidence of this, such as, “” which is one of the online job search engines the authors advise, say that they have “thousands of jobs”. Which makes the likelihood of obtaining one of these jobs much greater.

The authors advise that you “make sure that you network. Many Financial mavens and other money movers have found jobs by talking to family, friends and coworkers” This is most certainly true. However the authors failed yet again to back up this information with their own or other people’s research. By doing some simple research into this area they would have been able to tell the reader that in January of 2009 a study was done by econsultansy digital marketers united which concluded that facebook had a 1,191,373,339 monthly visits which proves that a lot of people are communicating online. This makes the Internet a good place to get the word out that you are looking for employment. Add to that the benefit of those people perhaps being out with yours direct friendship circle. These people who “occupy a different world from you”. The authors then could have quoted the research done into the “strength of weak ties” by the sociologist Mark Granovetter which is discussed in the very popular book “The Tipping Point” by Malcolm Gladwell, which says “Your friends, after all, occupy the same world that you do” and that “Your acquaintances … occupy a very different world than you. They are much more likely to know something that you don't”. These are the types of people you want to be networking with to find a job and should have been included in the book “ Careers For Financial Mavens And Other Money Movers”

The University Of Essex published a paper in August 2007 by Andrea Galeotti and Sanjeev Goyal titled “The Law OF The Few”. This journal is a continuation of the psychologist Stanley Milgram’s experiment into “small world syndrome” which investigates how people connect with others. In this journal the authors describe how they have created a game to identify the people who connect people to each other. These are called “connectors” or “opinion leaders”. It is Galeotti and Goyal’s hope that by identifying these leaders they can use this information so that the government for example can contact a selected crowd through one person. Which would save money and resources.

The authors say, “We also show that this pattern of social differentiation is efficient in some cases.” They give evidence of “Katz and Lazersfeld (1955)” a published investigation into the way people obtain information particularly in times of war. Discovering that “making purchase decisions across a range of products, most individuals relied on the information they received from another group of small individuals” This proves that the area they are investigating has purpose and should in theory work. It also proves that people take others opinions on a product very seriously. The authors imply that the area they are investigating is difficult because “Katz and Lazersfeld (1995) “ state, “ There were no significant observable differences between the opinion leaders and the rest”. This shows the reader that earlier studies into this area have proved difficult so it is likely that Galeotti and Goyal with struggle also.

The journal discusses a “recent Paper by Cabrales, Calvo-Armengol and Zenou (2007)” which investigates how people form their networks. The authors use this paper to show the difference in their experiment. While Cabrales, Calvo-Armengol and Zenou investigate individual networking relationships Galeotti and Goyal are investigating groups of people.

Galeotti and Goyal also mention a similar experiment by Bala and Goyal (2000) who “ approach the study of network games with strategic substitutes developed in Bramoulle and Kranton (2007)” They use this gathered evidence to show that nowadays location is not an issue for opinion leaders because they are in contact with people all over the globe through the internet.

Galeotti and Goyal successfully back up all their ideas and reasoning by using reliable sources of information and mentioning them in the body of the work. It seemed strange that after naming the piece “ The Law Of The few “ they did not mention the psychologist Stanly Milgrims study. This consisted of him sending out a parcel to a select number of people in all different states in America asking them to try to make the parcel reach a stockbroker who worked in Boston in as few steps as possible. The people who received these parcels were to send them to someone they thought was likely to know the stockbroker with the hope that it would one day reach him. The people who received the parcel were asked to record their name inside. This meant that Milgrim could calculate how many people the parcel had been to before reaching its destination. He found that the average number was 6. This lead to the common phrases the “six degrees of separation”. Another more recent experiment was carried out by Duncan Watts a professor at Cornell University who attempted to recreate Milgrims experiment using emails. The email needed to be delivered with forty eight thousand senders and nineteen targets in one hundred and fifty seven countries. He found that the average number of people it took to get the message through was six. This is the area Galeotti and Goyal were studying which makes this information extremely relevant to their investigation.

All in all these two pieces include a lot of useful information. Wither its finding the right job easily or finding an opinion leader to spread the word effectively. The importance of including source information has been amplified to me through this assignment. The book by Eberts and Gisler lacks in providing evidence and assumes and generalizes a lot of its “facts” where as “The Law Of The Few” has hard evidence backing up every one of its statements. Because of this I would trust the information in “Law Of The Few” over the information I found in “Careers For Financial Mavens and Other Money Movers”.


Bala V. and Goyal, 2000, A non cooperative model of network formation, Econometrica, 68, 1181-1229

Bramoulle Y. and Kranton R, 2007, Strategic Experimentation in Networks, Journal of Economic Theory, Forthcoming

Cabrales A. Calvo-Armengol A. and Zenou Y, 2007, Effort and Synergies in Network Formation, Mimeo

Eberts M. and Gisler M, 2004, Careers For Financial Mavens And Other Money Movers, McGraw-Hills

Econsultantsy Digital Marketers United, 2009, Internet Stats Compendium

Galeotti A. and Goyal S, 2007, Law OF The Few, University Of Essex Department Of Economics

Gladwell M, 2000, The Tipping Point, How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference, Little Brown

Katz E. and Lazersfeld P, 1955, Personal Influence, New York: The Free Press

Mark Granovetter, 1995, Getting A Job, A study Of Contacts And Careers, The University Of Chicago Press

Milgrim Stanley, 1974, Obedience to Authority: An Experimental View, Harper Perennial Modern Classics,, Online Job site

Watts D, Strogatz S, 1998, Collective dynamics of 'small-world' networks

Amy Joe Fitzpatrick

Matriculation Number: 070012478

Tuesday, 1 December 2009

Shed Project

In this first year project I was asked to design a shed for a specific purpose. I could chose that purpose, and so I decided to design a shed for a child who's family had split up. I designed this bedroom/gang-hut for the child to have their own place to escape to and if they wish sleep. It can be towed behind a car from home to home. I originally wanted to make a bike be able to tow the shed but the shed evolved too much and became much to heavy for a child to minover . I used the idea of separation within the shed. this is seen in the cracking effect of the windows surrounding the shed and in the sofa bed which transforms from a bed to a sofa through a form of separation.

Wednesday, 25 November 2009

Illumination Project

This is a first year project I did last year. We were asked to design and create a self supporting lamp. I decided to design a reading lamp.
I wanted to use an unusual material to create a soft light that would be comfortable for bed time reading but would also look attractive when the light was off. I became very interested in shadows during my research and I experimented with different materials to create a subtle shadow.
In the end I created my lamp by rolling up hundreds of pages of books and cutting them into small ring shapes. I then glued them back together side by side to create a honeycomb appearance. The intensity of the light is mellow and the ring shapes cast relay nice shadows on whatever surface you place the lamp.

Friday, 20 November 2009

Exhibition design

Research And Inspiration Final Presentation.

Development Final Presentation

Final Design Presentation

My most recent project in Interior and Environmental Design was to design an exhibition based on the theme of jutopolis. As jute was a major employer of the Dundee people less than 100 years ago this project was extremely relevant to our town. Through group work researching the jute industry and similar exhibitions we found that the education of the history of jute lacks the workers point of view. And so in my group we intervened a woman who worked in the mills "Lilly Thompson". This gave us a great insight into the hardship these workers endured.
In the end we designed a sensation based exhibition which should give the spectator similar feelings to the jute workers.
As you enter the exhibition you see a wall with a quote we received from Lilly which says
"No matter where you turned, it was jute" We felt that this quote was extremely significant in the viewers understanding of how important jute was to the people of Dundee. The second thing the viewer would see are three sketchy illustrations of hands doing three signals. This is because the mill workers often had to communicate visually because of the defining noise of the machines. Then they are confronted with a wall of hanging jute that a video of Lilly using her hand signals in the mills is projected onto. Viewers are encouraged to walk through this image of Lilly as if walking through her into what was her life. There is jute all around the viewer now and thicker pieces of jute with spotlights above them entice them to pull them. They trigger a sound box which plays important quotes that Lilly had said in our interview. Towards the end of this vast area of jute it begins to become tangled and eventually spirals into a tunnel which symbolises the fall of jute. When the jute industry died out in Dundee people were left jobless. Many were uneducated and had nothing else to do in life. In this tunnel another quote is written "I am a weaver, I was a weaver". Lilly said "I am a weaver"and then quickly corrected herself " I was a weaver" this was great because it showed that those people who were in the mills still feel part of it because it was their entire life.
I feel through our design process we have successfully designed an exhibition that truly helps people understand the life of a jute worker. I would hope that the public would enjoy our exhibition and remember it for years to come, never forgetting about the hard working Jute workers.

Tuesday, 17 November 2009

Gathering Evidence Homework

Andersen, KN ,The Use of Facebook in National Election Campaigns: Politics as Usual? , 2009.

This text describes social networking actively working as a means of communicating to others out-with a tangible social circle.

Bruce, Fraser, Making connections : an exploratory study in product innovation through an analysis of Social Networking.

This text discusses how social networking is a good way of connecting with others.

Calder, BJ, An Experimental Study of the Relationship between Online Engagement and Advertising Effectiveness, 2009.

A description of the effectiveness of online advertising through social networking sites.

Eberts M. and Gisler M, 2004, Careers For Financial Mavens And Other Money Movers, McGraw-Hills

This Book is a self help book to help financial mavens find the right job.

Friese G, Social media in EMS. Social media and Social Networking offer new opportunities to communicate with those inside and outside your organization, EMS Magazine 2009 Sep 38 (9), 39-45.

This text shows that social networking is a great way to get connected with people from all walks of life.

Galeotti A. and Goyal S, 2007, Law OF The Few, University Of Essex Department Of Economics

This Journal documents the findings of a social experament to find the connectors amoungst a group.

Linda D. Molm Nobuyuki Takahashi Gretchen Peterson, Risk and Trust In Social Exchange: An Experimental Test of a Classical Proposition, 2000.

This text discusses the importance of trust and how gaining a persons trust has a possitive impact on an individuals life.

No Author, Advertising. USMES Teacher's Resource Book, Preliminary Edition. 1974.

Discusses the best method of advertising and the way our brains are programed from a young age to be atracted by certain things.

Yakir, A, Medical students' attitudes to the physician's oath, 1998.

This text talks about the relationship between attitude and progress.

Sunday, 8 November 2009

"This is what a Honda feels like"

When you think of a Honda you most probably think "QUALITY". In my opinion Honda have some of the best advertising out there. The reason there adverts are so good is because they really understand what people are attracted to.
As a young designer I have been triked into thinking that design is all about how something looks. But it turns out that people are a lot deeper than we think. Even if they themselves don't know it. I discovered this during research for my current project furniture design. In which I have been investigating the attachment people form with their personal objects. This was something I plan on focusing on in my design process using the knowledge of the joe public's weaknesses for inanimate objects to manipulate a sense of pride in a piece of furniture.
I have discovered that along with other things the sound and feeling an object gives is equally important as how it looks. Compare the turner on an old keyboard to a new and their is an obvious loss of character. The new supposedly better keyboard twists easily and irrationally between your fingers whilst the older keyboard's turner turns with sense of tension in your hands, it makes a sweet but low clicking noise that sharply vibrates between your fingers. This instantly makes you more engaged with the object and has connotations of durability and expense. Objects like this are more desired and people are more likely to form an attatchment to them. Maybe the older keyboard isn't quite as impressive looking as the new one, but surely whats on the inside is more important that the presentation case?. It may be an important aspect of design but unfortunately our consumers wont get a chance to feel the quality of these objects unless we have a visual aid to draw them in. The perfect solution to this is to incorporate the quality feeling and sound of the old keyboard and put it in the new modern looking one. A lot of designers are piking up on this now and we should see the quality of accessories return to our homes shortly.

Honda are using their knowledge of this to sell thousands of their products. Its interesting how the introduction to the Honda advertisement says " This is what a Honda FEELS like" when it never mentions the sense of touch throughout the entire duration of the commercial . Honda have sussed this link between sound, feel and quality and have played on it in these adverts. Thats what makes them so successful and when you think of a Honda you most defiantly think "QUALITY".

Friday, 6 November 2009

Love Your Furniture

This week I have ben researching material for a project I am doing o furniture design. I wanted to somehow put the love back into furniture. in this Ikea generation furniture is seen as a disposable object that is perfectly acceptable to be thrown out as fashion changes. Times have changed, it seems hard to imagine that people used to spend the equivalent of a whole years wages on a piece of furniture. This created a sense of pride and people rarely threw them away. I want to get rid of the wasteful state of mind we have in today culture and design a piece of furniture that someone would be proud to have for the rest of their life and also hand down to their children. Someone who will have nothing to hand down to his children is Michael Landy, who in a piece of performance art he named "Break Down" destroyed all his earthly belongings. His car, his art, everything except his cat and girlfriend. In my group we discussed the things that we thought made people hang on to things these days, and so started to make a college of people with their sentimental objects and a small statement about why the object was so important to them. A lot of people discussed the secrecy of their possessions and most of the people we spoke to said that their object had a memory attached. This sparked our imagination to create a piece of furniture with a secret compartment for all your secret memories.

Please email me if you have any sentimental objects that you would like to be put in the college.

Thursday, 29 October 2009

Its All About Who You Know Not What You Know " Law Of The Few"

In Our group we discussed the relationship between " The Law Of the Few" and Interior design. This in depth discussion has really helped us understand our market place, and how to be successful in it. The area I found most interesting was the idea of the " Strength Of Weak Ties" . It is imperative to keep connections with lots of different people in our lives in order to be successful because it is these people who occupy another part of the world and we can use these people to spread the word of our designs and also to access other areas of work.

On my own I further related The " Strength Of Weak Ties" and the importance of being a Connector , Maven and Salesman in the industry of Interior Design. Its great to know mavens because they can pass on good words about you to others which builds you up a good reputation. This is why it is very important to impress a maven especially. It is even better to be a maven yourself, if you promote a fellow business they are likely to want to work with you in the future, opening up a whole new area of work. Its good to be a connector to have the ability to bring a group of people together from all different walks of life. This expands your market and helps get your name out there in to the big wide world. Considering the small world syndrome, if everyone is connected to anyone else on this planet with 6 steps it isn't impossible to get in contact with someone very high up in a certain field of practice. Salesmen are good at making ideas come to life. We all need to be salesmen, be passionate and exited about our work to get others attention and hook them in with our positive attitude to get them interested in our designs. 

To conclude from this exercise I have learned that we all have to be Mavens, Connectors and Salesmen to be completely successful in Interior Design. Its all about who you know not what you know!

Sunday, 18 October 2009

The Imaginarium of Dr Parnassus

Yesterday I visited the DCA to see 'The Imaginarium Of Dr Parnassus'. As a great fan of Heath Ledger I have been looking foreword to the release of his last film for quite some time. Unfortunately he died half way through the filming and the director Terry Gilliam and co writer Charles McKeown had to rewrite the film to make the death of the lead character less obvious.

The plot is surprisingly set in present day. A traveling show consisting of Dr Parnassus, Anton, Percy and Valentina the doctors daughter give the joe public the chance to enter their stage and travel through a mirror into a land of their imagination. Dr Parnnassus had earlier made a deal with the devil for an eternal life and the ability to transport people into their imagination through his meditation. The show rescue a young man Tony (Heath Ledger) who has been hung beneath a bridge and he soon becomes part of the act, provoking more interest with his charm. The devil soon comes to collect his payment in the form of Valentina causing much arousal in the hearts of Tony and Antony who have both fallen for her.

A lot of the film doesn't make any sense. People seem to know things before they have been told about them and calling two of the five main characters basically the same name Anton and Tony without any irony or deliberate reason is just annoying.

Gilliam did however do a great job discussing the death of the main character. There was roomers that Gilliam had given up all hope in ever completing the film until his daughter convinced him. Heath works really well with the feel of the film, his body movements and egotistical personality bring the right sense of an alter reality. Having Johnny Depp, Jude Law and Collin Farrel fill in for Heath worked well however I doubt the absence of Jude law would have been missed. His appearance seemed unnecessary. Farrell had been in Valentina's ideal world fantasies before hand which tied in nicely and Depp being almost identical to Heath made it hard to tell the difference between the two at some points.

Depp, Farrell and Law have now announced that all the money they had earned from the production of the film is being donated to Matilda, Heaths little girl. Having not been born when Heath had made his will all his fortune was given to her mother.

The films credits featured "A film from Heath Ledger and friends.".

This film is as the title suggests full of imagination and I highly recommend everyone go see it.

Friday, 9 October 2009

Bring Back The Buttons!

This touch screen generation should have stayed in films like Minority Report!.

I have become sick of a million and one gadgets on my phone that are badly designed and I have no idea how to use, not to mention costing me more money!

So I recently ditched my Samsung Tocco for a £14.99 Nokia 1661. It is the best phone I have ever had.

It seems that designers are putting too many gadgets into phones these days. I mean I don't really need to be able to send a picture to a friend who I will probably see in a few days. But I do, because I can!. This makes my phone bill go up and up. Its all part of a bigger plan though. Designers have done this deliberately. The more things they can make a phone do that costs money, the more money that phone is going to generate for that company which equals the more companies carrying the phone model, which means more money for the phone designers. Its a simple process. Dont get me wrong a phone that businessmen can check their emails on and organize their meeting with is great for them, just not me and probably you too. I don't know when the media infiltrated my mind and made me feel unable to have a phone which did not take better quality pictures than my camera and be doused in every form of technology able to get in there amongst the other sardines and sang and danced in every way I could desire. A mixture of clever advertising and peer pressure assumably.

With my Samsung Tocco I felt that so much energy had been focused on the touch screen function resulting with bad sound quality, awkward and badly designed display and slow running. The ear piece was tiny and even on the loudest setting sound quality was so bad I could only use it in a very quiet room, which defeats the entire purpose of a "mobile" phone. The texting function was impossible. the buttons were laid out too close together on the touch screen and I found myself changing the language by accident half way through my txt. The menu was slow and it took around 20 seconds to send a single page message in which time you couldn't do anything else.

My new phone the Nokia 1661 however sends messages in 1 second and isn't crammed full of applications. I never accidentally go on the internet and run up a bill of £3.00 because I cant. I don't send pictures to my friends because it doesn't have a camera. I now can use my phone whilst walking and talking to someone on it, and texting is simple because I now have buttons . It even has a flash light on it!. True I don't get those kodak moments but Im sure they guy behind me got it (Ill facebook him later).

I propose we all ditch our magicpicturenoisybrowertouchscreenbluetoothorganiservideomessagercallergadget
and go old school. Isn't vintage the thing these days?

PS. Until I can afford an iPhone.

Wednesday, 7 October 2009

The Tipping Point

"The Tipping Point" is a very interesting, thought provoking and inspiring book. The idea of a sudden epidemic erupting in every day life, from syphilis to fashion trends.

This book made me inspired to start my own epidemic. I now feel I know how to advertise myself as a designer and make sure I incur success in promotion of my ideas.

We were asked to complete a mind map, mapping our thoughts of the book in order to remember important points. I feel I may have mapped too much detail. My map seems to be a labyrinth of notes which I'm not sure many people would be able to read. however it has helped me immensely and I intend to use this way of studying in future.

I then made a second mind map even more in detail focusing on " 6 degrees of separation" and "connectors". This is the area of the book i found most interested in as I have researched it before and find it fascinating. I learned a lot about connectors and made my own list of connectors in my friend circle or "pyramid" rather. Interestingly I found that most of the people I know, I know because of me. Clubs I've been to classes I've taken etc. Some friends lead back to my friends Nora and Michael but I must come to the conclusion that I myself am a connector, although I never thought I would be.

All in all "The Tipping Point" has been an extremely enjoyable read in which I feel I have learned a lot from. I can now take these ideas with me on into the rest of my life.

Monday, 28 September 2009

Artificial Senses

Running fingers across and down your friends back to try and spell a word or secret out (Body Pictionary )We all did it, now scientists have developed technology to help you see with your sense of touch.

I came across this whilst researching the 5 senses for a uni project. In design the 5 senses are extremely important. Designers need to engage the user in order for them to buy their product. Whilst consumers think that design is visual, designers know that this is merely one appealing aspect. No-one is going to buy a radio covered in swed if they don't like the feel of it. I'm not going to buy a yellow laptop because yellow makes me angry, although it may calm another.

This technology could in the future help blind people fly planes, allow them to discuss visual art and find their way around new places. It is also great news for people who may need prosthetic limbs.

I found this article very interesting and hope that the technology becomes accessible and is used for great things. If not it will at least make body pictionary easier.


Friday, 25 September 2009


I went to see Thomas Hirschhorn's Its Burning Everywhere exhibition at the DCA on Tuesday. I must say i didn't relay like it. It all seemed a bit unfinished and too busy. I think if he had separated the exhibition it would have had greater impact. For example there was a beautiful tree ironically made out of paper placed in the centre of the room, which was supposed to have fallen down. It looked great but at the same time you were being confronted with a massive pile of mannequins. I found it all too .

When you entered you were confronted with a load of gory images which had all been very crudely sellotaped to a piece of card. The whole exhibition had a feeling of cheapness and no effort had been put in to make it neat, it was all very crafty. This was probably deliberate but I found this distracting too.

However it was clear that the exhibition had taken a long time to preppier and had been thought about a lot. so well done Thomas Hirschhorn.