Fruits bear testament to the fact that life is unfair - a pineapple can be sweet and tangy or too tart to the point of astringence.
Fresh fruit sellers in Singapore often offer two types of sliced pineapples - lengthwise wedges and crosswise rounds (or semi-circles). One friend theorized that since pineapples grow vertically, a lengthwise cut is fair. It ensures that each wedge has the same distribution of sweetness, because some rounds will inevitably be sweeter than others.
But it would be strange for one seller, optimizing for efficiency, to bother cutting pineapples two different ways. And why invite curious questions? So I choose to believe another friend who says that the rounds are to indicate the more expensive, sweeter variety from Sarawak (East Malaysia) while the spears are the less expensive but watered-down version from Peninsula Malaysia.
I’m curious how this manner of signaling / affordance came about though. How did the ‘meme’ spread to various sellers?
The other question would be: why do cut fruit sellers in Singapore all also sell agar agar (jello)?
Image from Flickr by kellikoob
Pushing the (new Gmail compose) button
There was something unusual about this button that came with Gmail’s new compose and reply - an unexplained icon!
Although the icon is for ‘Archive’, a defining feature of Gmail that most users would be familiar with, it is still surprising because:
Google designs for dead-simple. Buttons are dead-simple when they are text buttons. That is the case on Google.com - you don’t see a ‘I’m Feeling Lucky” icon.
When an icon is used, if the icon is not universally famous enough, a hover tooltip is there to help.
Buttons with only icons in Google are rare. In Gmail, the only such button is for ‘Search’. Even then, it is still dead-simple because the button is right beside the search box.
Seems like Gmail is trying to push the boundary with a specific, opt-in group: those who have turned on Gmail’s new compose AND also turned on the ‘Send and Archive’ setting (a recent Google Labs graduate).
A year ago, Gmail attempted to switch the toolbar to icons, but backed down after users protested and gave the option to switch back to text.
As a Product Manager, I want to say that in this case, Gmail should stick with useful, rather than beautiful.
Transformer: ice cream truck in sunshine, shelter/bed in rain.
Meat or murder? Do the sharks fins on display attract or repulse?
when is the friday in casual friday?
does the “Friday” in “casual Friday” refer to the last day of the working week, or does it refer to that day of week before Saturday? If Friday is a holiday, should people show up on Thursday in casuals?