Thoughts on Engineering, Photography, and Design.

Hey, I'm Ryan Heath. I design & develop things for a living and play with cameras for fun. This is where I share my thoughts on all of that — and probably more — along the way.

Shift: Is This Thing On?

I’m kind of surprised by the complaints I’m seeing on the new iOS 7.1 keyboard, specifically related to the Shift key. Folks are claiming that they have no idea if it’s on or off.

Just so we’re on the same page, here’s what I’m referring to:

iOS 7 Keyboard

The left shows the Shift key as on; the right shows it as off.

When the key is off, it blends with the dimness found on the other (non-alpha) keys. But when Shift is on, it’s bold and matches the display of the letters themselves. After all, if you touch “A” you expect it to do it’s job: give you an A. And if there’s a function of Shift, it’s to capitalize your letters (i.e. be on, not off). So thinking of an A as (always) on, doesn’t it make sense that the Shift key match the alpha keys when it is also on?

Maybe I’m scarred by thinking too deeply about these things on a day-to-day basis. To me, the existing function makes perfect sense and couldn’t be clearer. Is that because I’m often trying to solve similar UI-type problems? Or because it really is very obvious? Not sure.

Perhaps this is just another reminder of how Apple attracts very critical users, for better or for worse.

Personally, I love the iOS 7.1 keyboard. Kudos to Apple on a job well done.

Steve Jobs Reading "The Crazy One's"

I recently purchased a very well-done (letter pressed) piece of artwork in remembrance of Apple’s core philosophy: Think Different. This refers to the infamous 1997 marketing campaign that started Apple’s march back to the top, led by Steve Jobs.

It’s a sad day.

Apple has lost a visionary and creative genius, and the world has lost an amazing human being. Those of us who have been fortunate enough to know and work with Steve have lost a dear friend and inspiring mentor. Steve leaves behind a company that only he could have built, and his spirit will forever be the foundation of Apple.

This has affected me more than I expected. I saw a picture online of an empty “reserved” seat in the front row of the iPhone 4s announcement yesterday, and hoped it was nothing serious. Unfortunately, it was.

Steve Jobs has been an indescribable inspiration to me and everyone in this industry. He will be missed dearly.

Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.

A quote by Steve Jobs
John Sculley on Steve Jobs, Full Interview

An interview that gives some insight into Steve Jobs’ greatness. This is what’s possible when design comes first!