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The Filament Blog


We all suffer from a profound case of “Idea Surplus Disorder” at Filament — and we think that’s a good thing. Here are some of those ideas we’d like to share with you.



Filamental Links 6

It is time for another dose of Filamental Links: the cool, creative things we found on the Internet last month.


We really need a few of these marshmallow crossbows for Filament.

We ask this question a lot: "What about _____ annoys you?" It gets people to identify things they might miss if you ask about processes that don't work or are broken. Here's a way to keep an Annoyance Journal at home that you could use with your team at the office as well:

"Keep a mindfulness journal for a few days of all the little slip-ups you experience at home... As you start to write down these incidents, you’ll likely become more aware of how you move within and feel about your space. You may find yourself noticing things you would typically gloss over, or you may realize how much time you spend avoiding an issue."


"I think one of the great arts of facilitation is to keep things simple. The pitfall for many facilitators is that they try to embed in their work all the lessons they learn as they go, so that they create more elaborate processes. In theory, these build in useful lessons from the past, but in practice it often results in ways of working that take a long time to explain.  The facilitator thus has a big role to play in explaining things, something they may secretly rather like."

Need to do some prototypin'? Here's a great primer on how to build architecture models.

Should you read an epic twitter rant on "Precrastination" and productivity from two years ago? Yes!

Vanessa Friedman is talking about why "sustainable" high fashion is an oxymoron, but she might as well be talking about many creative industries:

“There are now new fashion collections coming out four times a year instead of two, and sometimes even more than four, if you throw in special holiday or store opening collections, so designers are effectively running on a creative treadmill that is—c’mon, you know where I am going with this, say it with me—unsustainable,” she said. “No one can have that many new ideas. At least not ideas that are any good, or remotely original, or, frankly, worth buying.”

Robots may not be taking over (yet), but they can kick our butts at foosball.


Why you should turn off all the lights when you sleep.

I'd never heard of Parkinson's Law of Triviality, but regularly see teams place a disproportionate focus on trivial projects. Here's why:

At work, you’re expected to have intelligent opinions and propose smart solutions to problems. But, when you’re working on something that is very complex, it’s intimidating and exhausting to have opinions on the biggest challenges. It’s so easy to focus your attention on the issues that are easy to grok and which won’t (literally) blow up in your face if you’re wrong. So, it’s understandable that people schedule meetings about the roof of the bike shed so that they can voice their opinions and feel useful and heard.

“The problem with the world is that the intelligent people are full of doubts, while the stupid ones are full of confidence.” – Charles Bukowski

Jason Fried refuses to fight the talent war:

"So how do find undiscovered talent? Ask around — but ask specific questions, like: “Do you happen to know anyone who’s cramped in his or her job? Someone who’s great but hasn’t been given the opportunity to do great work? Someone who’s stuck in a situation that feels like a job instead of a career?” If you post ads on job sites or your own site, cast your language specifically to catch these kinds of people."

In case you didn't suspect it, for some companies (think cable television providers) Tech Support is Purposefully Unbearable.

And finally this quote from Ikea's design manager:

“We are world champions in making mistakes, but we’re really good at correcting them.”