Category Archives: Zeitgeist

7 Deadly Sins of Worldbuilding

Worldbuilding is an essential part of any work of fiction. But especially for science fiction or fantasy, it’s the lifeblood of storytelling. But when worldbuilding fails, it can wreck your whole story, and leave your characters feeling pointless. Here are seven deadly sins of worldbuilding.

1. Not thinking about basic infrastructure. How do they eat? What do they eat? Who takes away the garbage? Who deals with their bodily wastes? How do they get around? What do the majority of people do to survive? You’re not just constructing a society, you’re creating an economy. People don’t oppress each other for fun — usually, systems of hierarchy and oppression have an economic component to them. Maybe you need a lot of peasants to grow labor-intensive crops, or maybe you need lots of cannon fodder in your space war. Maybe your only source of protein is a weird fungus that needs to be tended by specially trained people. Maybe everybody’s eating algae. In any case, there’s nothing worse than a fictional world where there are elaborate social structures, which seem completely separated from the realities of food, shelter and clothing.

Continues at: 7 Deadly Sins of Worldbuilding

Pantone’s “Minion Yellow” Isn’t Just Annoying, It’s Bad For Designers

 

Minion Yellow is a customized shade issued by Pantone with the express purpose of promoting the current installment of a certain film franchise which opened last weekend in theaters nationwide. It’s supposed to make people feel happy. But it makes me feel worried.

Source: Pantone’s “Minion Yellow” Isn’t Just Annoying, It’s Bad For Designers

Do we see reality as it is?

Cognitive scientist Donald Hoffman is trying to answer a big question: Do we experience the world as it really is … or as we need it to be? In this ever so slightly mind-blowing talk, he ponders how our minds construct reality for us.

Technology You Didn’t Know Still Existed: The Telegram

Today, where disposable instant messaging, emails, texts and tweets are all around us, it is a pleasant surprise to find out that the grandfather of quick communication is still with us.

Yes, it is still possible to send a personal, hand-delivered telegram.

Source: Technology You Didn’t Know Still Existed: The Telegram

Finland has a Brand Book?

Did you know that Finland has a Brand Book? I haven’t made it through this 365-page monster yet, but once you get past the cringe-worthy hyperbole of the first few pages, it actually turns pretty interesting. And insanely granular: there’s even a mission for grandparents.

http://www.demoshelsinki.fi/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/TS_Report_EN.pdf

The International Flag of Planet Earth

This is a pretty cool thought project, even though it kind of breaks the first of the five basic principles of flag design. That’s an awfully talented child who can draw this flag from memory.

http://www.flagofplanetearth.com