Paper to Digital: Age of Kindle

Do people still wrap their books nicely? I’m fond of wrapping my paperbacks. In spite of the rising trend of electronic reader (e-reader), I still prefer to own conventional books.

According to a research by Kindle Culture1, majority of kindle owners are adults (38.4%)  followed by older adults (37.3%) and younger adults (225).

The results suggests that there could be a relationship between the level of disposable income and age group.


Kindle by Amazon offer the ability to store thousands of books in a device that weighs less than a pound and portability that allows readers to carry around. The perks of using a Kindle are appealing but I don’t think it can replace the conventional book. It is certainly useful in the education sector such as using Kindle to cultivate reading habits among the students.

3A user at the University of Munster says:
With eBooks you can find relevant content much faster by searching for keywords. You can use them anytime and everywhere, in contrast to library-provided books, which are often not
available when you need them (Springer, 2008).

Technology has indeed revolutionised our learning journey. Reading is an important habit to nurture from young. Kindle is serving its purpose but will Kindle replace conventional library? I believe it is still a long way to go2.


1Culture, K. (2009) Kindle Culture: Kindle Demographics. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 12 Jan 2013].

2Colour My Learning (2012) Is the Amazon Kindle Fire & Kindle Fire HD any good for Education Sector?. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 12 Jan 2013].

3Springer (2008), “eBooks – the end user perspective”, white paper, available at: http://www.springer.
com/cda/content/document/cda_downloaddocument/eBooksþ-þtheþEndþUserþ Experience?SGWID¼0-0-45-608298-0 [Accessed: 12 Jan 2013]


Seeing is Believing?

Woman holding a vintage camera up to her face.

Photo tampering has been prevalent since the invention of photography. In 1917, a ‘Fairy’ photograph was circulated in England and received mixed public reaction1. It was later revealed that the photograph had been faked. Elise Wright created ‘fairies’ using cardboard, took photos with it and she claimed that it was real.

With technological advances, we can be subjected to greater visual manipulation. In fact, what we see on the print media nowadays has been enhanced for aesthetic reason. The question here would be how much altering is too much and what is the ethical limit? Check out a list of photos that has been doctored in 2012 for various media purposes here.

Untruthful representation of product undermines the brand or corporation credibility and value. The recent incident of Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) train ‘open door’ photo  made the headlines at STOMP (SPH online news website) and led to a public outcry. SMRT launched an investigation and discovered that there is no way the train can operate when the door is open therefore the photo is fake.

SPH’s editor-in-chief English & Malay Newspaper Division of Singapore Press Holdings (SPH), had to apologise to interim SMRT CEO Tan Ek Kia. It was a mistake by one of SPH staff and has been dismissed since the incident2.

It’s a serious mistake because it affected public confidence towards public transport and it’s also a form of damage to SMRT. It is unethical to alter a photo as a journalist to sell a news story.

References (1917) The Ethics of Digital Manipulation. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 9 Jan 2013]. (2012) SPH embarrassed by fake photo of SMRT train. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 9 Jan 2013].


TYPEFACE & Personality

goodtype Good typography is invisible!

Bad Typography is everywhere ! Here’s one:

merrie england

The choice of typeface makes it illegible.

But here’s a good one:


Source: Amazon. License: All Rights Reserved.

The typeface is applied with consistency; one would recognise that the e-reader ‘Kindle’ is a product by Amazon.

Parker RC observes that the style of the design lies mainly in the consistent use of a few selected typeface, font size, size of margin and colours. In other words, the choice of typeface used reflects the image of the design document, product and corporate identity.

For instance, what does ‘Cartier’ means to you at first glance? How does it look and make you feel like? It intuitively evokes elegance and timelessness which are the embodiment of its products.


Source: Cartier. License: All Rights Reserved.

 What if it’s in ROCKWELL typeface? The identity changed. Does it seems to you that it is a jeweler and watchmaker?



If IBM decides to change their brand logo by using comic sans, does it still look like they are a technology firm? Therefore typefaces have personality. See the impact it makes ?

Side note, here’s something that I wanted to share when I was working on project, I came across this guide about the choice of typefaces which is very useful.


kwall (2009) Crimes Against Typography. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 3 Jan 2013].

Why do we blog?

A blog is in many ways a continuing conversation. – Andrew Sullivan

Blog is a form of communication. Blog is more than sharing information, it also reveals the character of the blogger. Hear what Mena Trott have to say about blogging:

There is creative reading as well as creative writing. – Ralph Waldo Emerson

New Media: Twitter – Bane or Boon?

Are you a twitter user? I am ever since Twitter was founded in 20061

I like how twitter allow us to access the latest news updates and stories around the world in real time.

Recently I came across this talk on Digital Humanitarianism which demonstrated how social media and technology is becoming central to humanitarian aid.

Paul Conneally, public communications manager for the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies shared about the transformational power of technology during disaster response. I felt enlightened by his testimony because  twitter is more than instant blogging to serve our own or business needs. In this case, it became a dialogue between aid-workers and survivors 2.

On the flip side, as twitter gained popularity over the years it has been subjected to controversy. In a hyper-connected world, anything can happen virtually within a few seconds. Tweets are word-of-mouth in the virtual world. For instance, the celebrities’ death hoax on twitter

So what do you think?

References (2006) Twitter – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 28 December 2012].

2Tarleton, A. (2010) Twitter search for Haiti survivors – Channel 4 News. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 28 Dec 2012]. (2008) Twitter Hoaxes | Gallery | Wonderwall. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 28 Dec 2012].

Anxious? Depressed? Try Reading

Reading change the way we look at things. For example after you have read Jane Austen and you are going to visit your friend, give it a thought on how Jane Austen will look at them.

Stories and lessons we have benefited from books enable us to see things we would otherwise have missed it.

There is a new therapy called Bibliotherapy. It is a convergence of psychology and literature to make people feel better about themselves.

There are a lot of self-help books in the market. Bibliotherapy introduced a list of books to patients after consultation and the psychology behind it is that people will feel better when they know they are not the only suffering from it. Reading reduces stress too after a long day at work. Our mind shift gears when we pick up a great fiction book.

So what are you reading lately to shape the quality of your mind?


I’m bringing you interesting reads here, wrought by the current media issues as well as design and technology matters.

I will do my best to update the site regularly 🙂