Exploring the World of Ideas

From subjective imagination to objective axioms

This site is the personal blog of Stephen Bau. Here is where I explore ideas by discovering how I can put into practice what I am learning. I’ve always seen life as a learning process. Some say this is only the beginning.

What I am learning in the here and now revolves mostly around issues of design, technology, and web standards. Specifically, XHTML, CSS, XML and XSLT, and the beautifully designed application with which I have built this site. I have several web carcasses lying in wait for Symphony 2 to be released as a final version. In the meantime, this site will serve as a proving ground for building a site in Symphony and exploring its many core features while the community awaits the rewriting of the old Campfire Services as Symphony 2 Extensions.

You will tend to find me turning all the Overture Forum discussions to white as I try to understand the depths of the content management system orchestrated by the Twentyone Degrees development team.

The Design Administration

Using Technology To Meet the Needs of Business

The Design Administration is an idea I had to gather a group of designers who live on the edge of creative vision, entrepreneurial ingenuity and technological innovation to build a system on the Symphony platform that encompasses the breadth of work in which designers are involved. It may be just an idea for now, but here is the gist.

Bringing Good to Life

What is the ideal work environment? What sort of endeavour provides the perfect mix of social interaction, collaborative teamwork, challenging and inspiring work, and a meaningful and fulfilling vocation? How can success in the workplace transform social structures and encourage harmonious relationships within our communities, our nation, our world? The Design Administration is enlisting a task force of designers to infuse the design industry with a meaning and purpose that goes far beyond the bottom line. Design is intrinsically enmeshed with economics, as business is its primary patron. However, everyone who uses a product is also a patron. As both consumers and creators of products, if the objects of our desire extended beyond physical goods to everything that is good, how different would our world be?

There is the moral good and there is the pragmatically beneficial. I suppose I’ll take the low road at this point. In the search for the best tools to run a business, there appears to be little that meets my requirements. I don’t want something that is bloated with unnecessary or poorly implemented features, with a bloated price tag to match. I don’t want a tool that meets certain requirements well but leaves a hole for other applications to fill, especially when the monthly fee for each service that is required begins to exceed what my budget comfortably allows. Plus, the need for multiple applications leads to a duplication of efforts in maintaining several fragmented solutions to the single problem of efficiently running a business.

What Good is This Site?

Well, I suppose that’s a matter of opinion, but for me, it’s a proving ground for the development of a system that helps me as a brand, advertising, print and web designer to manage clients, projects, tasks, schedules, timesheets, assets, finances and taxes in order to establish a better working relationship with colleagues and customers. So, I am building a single application that I can use, and which I would like to offer to others as a solution to the frustrations of any jack-of-all-trades-master-of-none-learn-by-doing-build-it-yourself-freelance-graphic-design-consultant-sole-proprietor-inhouse-branding-and-corporate-communications-specialist-information-architect-web-programmer-interface-designer.