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  • The Weekly Wraparound: January 6

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     A photograph of Ryoji Ikeda’s The Transfinite at the Armory Show in New York, Elle Kim's Tuesday pick for 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. 

    While we were ringing in the new year, Apple’s leading designer Jonathan Ive was awarded knighthood by Queen Elizabeth. How was your first week of 2012? Even if you were not royally rewarded for your brilliance, we hope you had a good one! Here are the stories that grabbed us as we emerged from the holiday haze:

    1.

    This week’s Design Envy picks came from Elle Kim, a New York–based creative from Seoul, Korea, drawing on her background in 2-D design and the fashion and beauty industry. Understated luxury and sublime spectacle were just some of the traits making her say, “I wish I did that.”

    What do you think of her selections? Feeling envious, too? Cast your vote—the most popular designs will become part of a special collection in the AIGA Design Archives

    2.

    In a lengthy series of tweets yesterday Kanye West announced his plans to launch a design collective called DONDA—“a design company which will galvanize amazing thinkers,” including architects, graphic designers, video game designers, “app guys” and “tech guys.” A lot of people are making jokes, but we think it could lead to good things. After all, when Kanye West talks about the impact design can have on the world and carrying on the legacy of Steve Jobs, people are bound to listen. Fortunately, Complex is taking it seriously and has proposed “5 Projects We’d Like to See from Kanye West’s DONDA.”

    3.

    OK, Lady Gaga, you helped resuscitate Polaroid. Can you do it for Kodak too? Said to be on the brink of bankruptcy, the pioneering American company has been unable to capitalize on the ubiquity of digital photography. Alexis Madrigal at The Atlantic looks at the culture Kodak created but is no longer leading (with a wonderful slideshow of old Kodak ads). 

    4.

    Should designers know how to code? We’ve mentioned it before, and now’s your chance to learn how along with New York City’s mayor. This week Codecademy launched CodeYear.com, where nonprogrammers pledge to learn to how to code by completing one assignment per week for a year. Slate’s Farhad Manjoo makes a case for why anyone should know how to code: “....the most interesting thing about taking up programming: It teaches you to think algorithmically. When faced with a new challenge—whether at work or around the house—I find myself breaking down the problem into smaller, discrete tasks that can be accomplished by simple, repeatable processes.” And there’s no time like the present to put your new coding skills to work—NASA has introduced Code.NASA.gov, in the hopes that “tomorrow’s space and science systems will be built in the open.”

    5.

    In her New York Times piece “Challenges for the Design Industry in 2012,” Alice Rawsthorn poses important questions: "What needs to be done to enable designers to develop more ambitious solutions to our environmental problems?" and ”How can designers translate scientific advances into things that can make life easier and more enjoyable?” She also lays out several priorities, like learning to listen to what people have to say and dealing with the adverse effects of technology. So, safe to say, this year in design won’t be boring.

    6.

    Mixer Labs creator Elad Gil discusses the evolution of social media from long-form (read: Blogger) to push-button (read: Pinterest). Why the shift? “Because most users don't want to take much effort to produce content, and consuming content in a structured manner (especially photos) is also much faster.” 

    7.

    There was nothing fast and effortless about the U.S. map created by David Imus and which received “Best of Show” at the annual competition of the Cartography and Geographic Information Society. Imus “worked alone on his map seven days a week for two full years. Nearly 6,000 hours in total.” Wow. The 35-year veteran of cartography “spent eons tweaking label positions. Slaving over font types, kerning, letter thicknesses. Scrutinizing levels of blackness. It’s the kind of personal cartographic touch you might only find these days on the hand-illustrated ski-trail maps available at posh mountain resorts.” Read about it here and see it in full detail on Imus’s site. (hat tip: @jontangerine

    8.

    As shared on The Next Web, Behance, a platform for sharing and finding creative work—including AIGA member portfolios—released a new iPhone app last week. Will Allen, Behance’s head of strategy and operations, says the app is designed to be the “ultimate pocket portfolio that syncs with your Behance projects.” Have you tried it? Thoughts?

    9.

    What are your resolutions for 2012? Since we all can’t be a “Sir” or “Dame,” why not strive for “Good Samaritan”? That’s the idea behind Resolutions for Good, a campaign launched by TBD, to designate 2012 the year of doing good for others. We agree with swissmiss: well done!

    Anything noteworthy that we missed? Tell us in the comments.

    Compiled by Sue Apfelbaum and Rasika Welankiwar 

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