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  • The Weekly Wraparound: December 2

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    A still from a video capturing the work Rilla Alexander created as a complement to her all-ages book Her Idea, featured by Jaeger Sloan Inc on Design Envy 

    Editors’ note: “The Weekly Wraparound” is an editorial roundup of links to the week’s best design stories, posted every Friday by the editorial staff of AIGA.org. For recommendations all week long, follow us on Twitter at @AIGAdesign.  

    As Napster says its final goodbye (no, that didn’t already happen) and we say hello to December, here’s a list of what else has got us thinking this week:

    1.

    This week Doug Jaeger and Kristin Sloan, of the creative studio JaegerSloan Inc, curated Design Envy, sharing a mix of technology, product design, illustration and film projects—from Betty Wants In’s peaceful twist on skydiving to Areaware's old-timey alarm clock, merging classic with mobile.

    What do you think of their selections? Are you seeing green too? Cast your vote—the most popular designs will become part of a special collection in the AIGA Design Archives!

    2.

    Can good design rescue fast food? Pentagram addresses that question with a redesign of Popeye chicken for the New York Times Magazine’s “Food and Drink” issue.

    While on the subject of design for food and drink, Coca-Cola’s holiday cans have been recalled, due to customers’ confusing the silver packaging with Diet Coke. Oops.

    And the James Beard Foundation, “dedicated to celebrating, nurturing, and preserving America’s diverse culinary heritage and future,” announced a new award this year for “Visual Storytelling,” to recognize “excellence in photography, graphic design, and photojournalism.” 

    3.

    What makes a site memorable is how it makes you feel. That’s the premise of Designing for Emotion, a new book by Aaron Walter, the lead user-experience designer for MailChimp, an SAS email marketing platform known for its user-friendliness. In this article for Forbes.com, Anthony Wing Kosner shares how insights from this book helped him put the finishing touches on a redesign of the website for Felony & Mayhem Press, an independent publisher of mystery fiction. As Kosner writes, Walter’s “first and most important point is that websites should feel like they are made by human beings for human beings.” See how Kosner took that advice to heart on Felony & Mahem’s new site.

    4.

    UX designer Dan Saffer rounds up his favorite design articles of 2011 (h/t Michael Surtees). On the dearth of female authors in the group, he asks: “Either women should write more about design, or I should be reading more of their writing. Woefully under-represented on this list. Who should I be reading?” We're partial to Allison Arieff, Mandy Brown, Liz Danzico, Kristina Halvorson, Julie LaskyCallie Neylan, Alissa Walker and Helen Walters, to name only a few. Thinking about this issue led us to Katie Gillum’s excellent post on the Mule Design blog about “(Parts of) Women in Design.”

    5.

    Also thanks to Saffer (@odannyboy) we stumbled on Russell Davies’ musings on our “post-digital world.” (You might remember Davies’ Newspaper Club, which was a featured Design Envy pick by Kevin Slavin.) Are we really bored with screens, or do we just want them plus print?

    Based on the buzz around BERG’s Little Printer announcement (a video about the printer posted on Vimeo on Monday has already received more than 850K plays), there certainly does seem to be a desire to marry the two. As described on Co.Design, what the Little Printer offers is “a personalized mini-newspaper—with content curated from partners like The Guardian, social media like Foursquare and Facebook, as well as stuff created by BERG itself—and output on a receipt-like paper strip no longer than 10 inches.” The product’s charm is undeniable, but will people actually use it? We’re not sure. What do you think?

    6.

    Those interested in tablet versions of magazines must read The Guardian’s interview with The Economist’s CEO, who reveals that digital is the reason why the publication is thriving. For further analysis, check out “The Personalized Brand: Yet Another Reason The Economist Is Trouncing Competitors.” 

    7.

    We’re intrigued by the Library as Incubator project, started by a group of library science students at the University of Wisconsin and reported on by GOOD, that aims to increase awareness about how libraries support the arts through personal stories from those who have found inspiration in the stacks. Here’s hoping these testimonials help keep budget cuts at bay.

    8.

    The quality of pictures that the iPhone camera produces is so good, it’s spawned what seems like a gazillion apps. One of them, Instagram, has drawn an impressive 10 million users in its first year. So why is Instagram so popular? One very good reason put forth by Nate Bolt: It forces you to focus.

    9.

    And finally, Steven Heller pays tribute to Louis Silverstein, revolutionary newspaper designer, who passed away this week at 92.

    Now tell us, what have you been reading? We’d love to hear from you in the comments.

    Compiled by Sue Apfelbaum and Rasika Welankiwar 

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