“Am I Better Than an Algorithm?”

David Byrne curates the Meltdown Festival at London’s Southbank Centre, this second half of August. BBC Radio 6 Music chimed in with a David Byrne radio show this afternoon, which he presented as a competition with the algorithms that dish up music to us via services like Spotify. David Byrne makes his point against algorithms in an eloquent and funny way in the animated intro on the page linked above. If you like it, download the podcast. I can recommend it because he I think is better than an algorithm. However, that does not mean we can ignore algorithms. As I also noted in the tweet below, design anthropologists see value in studying the behaviour of algorithms, and open up the black box of these editors of the content we see and don’t see, simply because these algorithms have become central to our 21st Century culture.


Beyond Human Centred Design

COVID19 has given the world the time to rest, and the opportunity for us to rethink the way we live. It has also revealed how inseparable we are with…

Let’s Talk Maps and Mapping

Interested in mapping services, ecosystems, stakeholders and beyond? Join us as we explore how other disciplines approach mapping and what we can take away as design researchers and service designers.

The Subspecies of Design Researcher

As a design research agency, STBY has worked with design researchers of many shapes and sizes. While the role of ‘design researcher’ becomes more common and recognised as a formal position in many different types of organisations, it’s worth reflecting on how we all work and the unique skills and attitudes needed in different settings.

GOOD is coming to London again!

As the founder and partner of REACH network, STBY is happy to announce that following on the success of previous related events around the world,…

A New Breed of Design Research Tools

Gone are the days of lugging around clunky recorders, hefty cameras and brick-like hard drives to interviews and observation sites. The design researchers of today need only bring along a smartphone hooked up to a few complementary gadgets and software to capture and save quality audio, video and images.

Rigorous documentation: A research superpower

When research activities get going in earnest, a lot is produced. If treated too casually, the mass of audio files and transcripts, flip-overs and mini-posters full of post-its, photos, interview notes and feedback mails can quickly turn into a massive hairball that no-one can unpick.