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From Johs Ensby <j...@b2w.com>
Subject Re: Concept Art 0.10-0.12
Date Thu, 13 Nov 2014 07:03:55 GMT
Thanks for your patience, Nick
it is not the “creative” approach that I address here, it’s domain-specific professionalism
in communications and identity design that is lacking.
Code isn't written based on your “creative” process. Yes, allowance for non-linear, out-of-the-box
break-the-conventional-wisdom approaches are valuable.
But I would stop using CouchDB this minute if I didnt have faith in the software development
competence of the “officers” of this Apache CouchDB. 
If the community was shooting wildly in the dark for solutions, hoping to catch a silver bullet
one day, this project would not be where it is today.

Let me try with some tech analogies:
The visual identity is like a memory chip in brand building.
The brand building itself is done by you all, us all, the product, the buzz, the reality —
the experiences that we have and make happen over time with the thing, CouchDB.
Eventually it becomes part of our system, or we become part of it’s system, the community,
we identify, the brand earns a place close to our heart, occupies some space in out brain.

This is process is s tedious, everyday process of small impressions, contributions from everybody.
The brand is built, day by day, experience by experience.

At the core of this is a memory chip: The identity, first and foremost the NAME, but as much
the VISUAL IDENTITY.
CouchDB has a red color as part of its identity, typography and a clean, fresh look red and
black on white.
Look at the new web site and you see how easily this is executed in a powerful way.
The name and logo is the core element.
It is unique, it is very well designed, the symbol works with the name and makes a good logo.

Now, if we had a good reason for changing the identity, it needs a process other then being
“creative”.

If we had a good reason to change the CouchDB visual identity, maybe even its name since the
slogan “relax” is also disliked by so many.
If we really had a reason other than the invisible “crouch” of a sexy programmer being
a “hidden message” in the CouchDB icon.
What we would do then is…
ERASE the brand memory chip.

Start all over again.

Build recognition from scratch.
Build values into the brand.
Promote something new in competition with… puh.. everything else on the net.

My only point is:
When you want to erase your brand’s visual identity, you need to have a good reason and
you don’t just dismantle it piece by piece in a “creative” process.
Look at how CocaCola or Shell changed their logos over the years.

Of course you could say, "no-one knows CouchDB anyway, so now is the time to start fresh.”
I would disagree; the slow and hard part is behind us, this is not the time to start over
and spend another 5 years promoting the couch without the couch.

I dont’t know who did the identity job on CouchDB exactly, if was a strike of luck, I just
want to say that the package:
Name
Symbol
One-word slogan
is supreme work for something with the ambition to reach a generation of developers in competition
with everything else there.
It is consistent, unique and very well executed, easy to implement and use.
It doesn’t need a big design manual to be implemented consistently across various media.

You need to establish a good reason for changing the identity at this point in the project.
Does the identity design matter that much?

Well, IBM and Cloudant are not likely to mess around with their identity shortly, so they
will be able to carry the flame on to a bigger market while the window of opportunity is open.

johs:)

> 
> On 13 Nov 2014, at 06:52, Nick Pavlica <linicks@gmail.com> wrote:
> 
> Johs,
> 
> Sorry to negative towards this redesign process, but I find this utterly
>> unprofessional.
> 
> 
> Thanks for the feedback, communication is difficult at best.  I understand
> that in your experience that this workflow may not be familiar.  However, I
> would encourage you to learn more about the creative process as highlighted
> in this article (
> http://www.brainpickings.org/2014/02/19/tiffany-shlain-creative-process/ )
> and others.  These techniques have been used for years in a wide variety of
> professional environments.
> 
> 
>> 
>> Imagine what the software would look like if is was developed without no
>> purpose nor a professional process.
>> - Hey, I’ve written a new piece of code, How about replacing the core
>> module with this?
>> - Awsome, I like line 3-5.
>> - I like line number 10!! Great.
>> - Thanks, I will write some new lines, this is fun!
>> 
>> 
> In general terms this is exactly the process of developing software.
> Something is created, others use or review it, and changes are made based
> on the feedback of the user/reviewer.  This process has been the same since
> I wrote my fist piece of software in 1982.  I have written many thousands
> of lines of code, and the feedback and iteration cycles are getting
> shorter, faster.  Just look at git-scm, and the hugely popular github.
> These personify this paradigm, of fast iteration, community involvement,
> and collaboration.
> 
> 
>> It’s the first time I see a logo being developed by dozens of shots in the
>> dark without any stated intention.
>> 
> 
> In the many design projects that I have been involved with, each has had an
> idea phase where many ideas are explored.  Every conceptual image presented
> thus far has design intention, the question we are trying to answer is
> which of these design intentions is the right one.  These are not shots in
> the dark, just stepping stones.
> 
> 
>> I still haven’t seen any other reason for the redesign than that the guy
>> in the couch has an “inviting” position.
>> Are there any reasons for the redesign initiative?
>> 
> 
> The fact that many have voiced their interpretation of the image as
> perverted is reason enough.  I did a small survey of people that know
> nothing about CouchDB of their interpretation of the image.  They
> unanimously, and independently, responded with: "A perverted guy sitting on
> a couch". Certainly there are those that aren't bothered by the image, and
> that's ok, but we can't discount those that are.  Do we really want to hold
> onto something that can be seen in such a negative light, I hope not.
> Additionally, what does the guy on the couch really say about CouchDB, it's
> hard to find any kind of relevance.  It seemed more appropriate at the
> beginning of the project when Damian was coding on his couch, and Chris was
> rapping the praises of the project.  However, as time has passed it's
> becomes less and less relevant to the product, and project.  You don't see
> a guy on a couch in Chris and Damian's new venture CouchBase.  Now, is the
> right time for the perverted guy on the couch to go away, especially with
> the spark of new energy that CouchDB 2.0 will create.
> 
> Going forward,  I would graciously ask for your participation in this
> creative process.  If you have a detailed vision of what the new logo
> should be, please share it.  The more we work through ideas, the better the
> product will be in the end.
> 
> Regards,
> -- Nick Pavlica
> 
> 
>> 
>> johs
>> 
>>> On 13 Nov 2014, at 03:13, Nick Pavlica <linicks@gmail.com> wrote:
>>> 
>>> All,
>>> I have continued to develop new "concept" art in hopes of furthering our
>>> effort to update the CouchDB logo.  I have three distinct concepts for
>> your
>>> review and consideration.  Naturally these are works in progress, and are
>>> intended to stimulate ideas, and conversation.  Additionally, a new motto
>>> is being develop that will also effect the final product.  Versions ten,
>>> and eleven are completely new ideas, while twelve builds on the old logo.
>>> 
>>> v0.10: "Classy"
>>> https://www.dropbox.com/s/dp7h16cpbzh2ph5/couchdb_
>> concept_art_10.pdf?dl=0
>>> 
>>> v0.11: "Super Modern"
>>> https://www.dropbox.com/s/838gel6zq22nest/couchdb_
>> concept_art_11.pdf?dl=0
>>> 
>>> v0.12: "Robots"
>>> https://www.dropbox.com/s/1x4m9j0h31zc86i/couchdb_
>> concept_art_12.pdf?dl=0
>>> 
>>> Regards!
>>> -- Nick Pavlica
>> 
>> 


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