Monthnotes for April 2016

April was a true spring month: Lots and lots of things that had been in the making for a long time now sprouted, as it were, and became publicly visible.

It’s always great to see projects come to fruition that way. This month this included two new websites (Dearsouvenir and ThingsCon), lots of new community events for ThingsCon, a new issue of Dearsouvenir is about to come out, The Good Home went on exhibit in Milan, our smart city policy paper for the German government was published… Again, lots of fun stuff. Enjoy!

In self-directed stuff…

ThingsCon: Our fantastic community is really getting into the spirit of hosting local events. We’re currently coordinating events large and small throughout the year in Milan, Berlin, Cologne, Lisbon, Amsterdam/Rotterdam, and a few more potentials. To actually show what’s going on we’re in the final stages of revamping the website, too. We’re expecting to flip the switch any day now, so feel free to hop on over!

The Good Home went to Milan to exhibit at Fuori Salone! We set up shop for a few days with a room for our projects, and hosted a series of workshops around privacy, product design and hospitality in the context of the connected home. (Here’s a brief write-up of a workshops on hospitality & privacy we hosted together with the lovely Casa Jasmina crew, Jasmina Tesanovic, Bruce Sterling and Alessandro Squatrito)

The Good Home aperitivo at Fuori Salone
The Good Home at Fuori Salone, Milan. (Photo by Iohanna Nicenboim.)

Dearsouvenir is officially its own company – we got our paperwork signed off by the notary, so all’s well. It’s a joint venture of Carry-On Publishing, Netzpiloten and The Waving Cat. Also, the website is all new and shiny (preview), so I happily invite you to hop on over and take a look. Also, issue number 2 is almost ready, themed appropriately #TGIF.

Dearsouvenir - making it official
Founding papers for Dearsouvenir GmbH

Mozilla’s Open IoT design sprint around the connected home took place in Berlin over 4 days. What a fantastic bunch of people! I had lots of fun in my group – Rachel Uwa, Martin Skelly & Vladan Joler – building a speculative design piece, the Privacy Machines.

Privacy Machines
Privacy Machines: The Wayback Machine

In client work…

Smart city policy! Last year Prof. Dr. Christoph Bieber and I were asked to write a study and policy recommendations around connected cities with a focus on citizens’ rights & empowerment for the German federal government. Our research was to be part of a large annual report on global mega trends that shape society. The report was published on April 25th, with our contribution as a full download. For your convenience, you’ll find a bit more background, an executive summary in English, and all the relevant download links in this blog post.

Other ongoing client work includes lightweight policy and consulting work with Google HQ, and an engagement with Bosch for an internal professional advancement program for their management.


IoT Design Process Patterns: As part of Dries de Roeck’s research into design processes and patterns we’ll be hosting a workshop in Berlin on June 7th. It looks like we might have one or two more seats (pending), so if you have launched an IoT product or are currently designing an IoT product, take a look at this description and ping me if you think you should be part of this group.

Also, I’m happily wrapping up my face-to-face appointments in Berlin because I’ll be working from Lisbon for a few weeks in May/June. Regular work time, different location. Also, while in Lisbon I’ll be hosting a small informal ThingsCon meetup. If you’re around say hi!