day job

Connecting The Dots at Work

Nov 17, 2016(edit)

“You have to be creative” is a current mantra being bandied around at work. But how do you actually do that in the work situation? I came across a quote from Steve Jobs where he spoke about creativity. He said that it is simply connecting the dots. It’s about connecting disparate ideas,… View More

Creating Beautiful Spreadsheets using the Enclosure Art Principle

Oct 14, 2016(edit)

“Jonah, I have to disagree with you on the white space you talked about last week.” We’ve been humming along, looking at how art principles can improve spreadsheets, making them presentable, understandable, and beautiful. We’ve looked a conceptual framework for sending a message by way of… View More

Using Negative Space in Spreadsheets

Oct 7, 2016(edit)

Things that are close together will be grouped together. Things that are separate will be taken as separate. This art principle is called proximity. This grouping function of the mind is non-verbal and pre-cognitive (i.e. you don’t have to think about it), it’s just something that you do… View More

Value: The Hidden Opportunity in Spreadsheets

Sep 30, 2016(edit)

Now let’s go into the visual aspects of presenting spreadsheets. As mentioned before, combining denotation and connotation forms a complete message of a photograph or in our case, a spreadsheet. I also said that these two have to be in sync. Now comes visual language. The visual language of the… View More

This Is Not An Apple

Aug 23, 2016(edit)

Have you looked at a photograph and said, “Why would anyone photograph that?” Usually when this happens, it’s because we’re missing the connotation. So let’s recap a bit. Denotation are all those things that are shown -in- a photograph. Anything printed on a piece of paper or shown onscreen like… View More

Denotation in Photographs and Spreadsheets

Aug 12, 2016(edit)

So two weeks ago, I recommended turning off the grid in Microsoft Excel to get a sense of spaciousness. Turning off the grid increases analytical ability by removing non-data junk. You become a better number cruncher as a result. Last week, I shared my perspective on the analytical phase of… View More

Getting Lost in The Forest

Aug 3, 2016(edit)

This post is part II of How to Improve Your Spreadsheets Using Art Principles. You can read Part I here. You’ve turned off the grid. So what do you now? Well, it depends on what type of spreadsheet analysis you need to do. Is it typical or new? There’s no point in recreating the wheel if someone… View More

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