Make 99% Invisible Visible

I mentioned 99% invisible on my last FoxShow – it’s a fascinating and amazing show, talking about design, typically in architecture. For those who build software, what IS interesting is how design impacts a variety of things. Subtle things, like how if you close your eyes, a lane change feels like a 90% degree turn or just a quick flick of the wrist. Or how four uber-creative guys decided to ensure certain words were ensconced in metal. Or even more fun, what really should happen when patent-violators go bad.

However, more to the point, 99% Invisible is on KickStarter, a web site to help businesses or groups fund things through the crowd. The show started looking for some money to help broaden its scope so it can do more shows. But they hit that target almost instantly. Now they are trying to do something  a little more fun —- reach 5,000 “backers”. They’re almost there (4,600 at this writing) with 4 days to go.

You don’t have to give a lot of money — in fact, if you listen to the show and don’t like it, then don’t bother. But if you do like it, why not pledge $5 or anything? (if you give more than $30, there are some “gifts”)

Why give? Well, if you like the show, the original goal was to try and make more episodes every year, by helping one of the interns be able to work regularly on the show. That goal was hit within 24 hours. Now with increased backers, there are other goals: more episodes, make video episodes, who knows.

One of the best things of the show is that it is re-listenable. From the web site, “They’re produced to stand up to multiple listens and reveal more each time they’re heard. The ultimate goal of 99% Invisible is to make radio that inspires mindfulness and wonder in all the things in the built world.”

If that doesn’t sound like something (or anything) that could improve your software design, maybe you’re not listening (or looking) hard enough.