Images have never been more powerful

I was going to highlight the design decisions behind several key digital works I've created over the last 20 years, but...

I want to instead talk about the remarkableness of the technology we currently have unique access to - purely via being lucky enough to be alive during this privileged era.

When I started creating visual communication assets for science and engineering applications in 1999, websites were mostly black text, blue hyperlinks and images (usually scanned from textbooks) nested between paragraphs.
For years I had been making useful and cool-looking content, improving user interfaces, creating visual design assets, including marketing material and the communication of engineering concepts, this was mostly deployed on the browser-enabled worldwide web, viewable by almost anybody with an internet connection.

That was truly remarkable. A titanic shift in the flow of information. In just a few years, from written & printed material conveyed to a mailroom (the norm) or broadcast (very expensive and with a high barrier to entry).
Witnessing this shift was mind-blowing enough for most people. But many saw further ahead and a few of those helped to convey us toward that future.

Over the next decade, the potential for communicating via the worldwide web has grown exponentially.

One of the best examples was when Astronaut Ron Garan embarked on his second mission to ISS in 2011, he succeeded in taking a great many people with him via internet-disseminated media, which succeeded in elevating people from being mere spectators to becoming active participants. To me, the impact of this outreach was several orders of magnitude greater than anything that had gone before.

The potential for well-designed media to make a real impact or reach a broader population has never been greater.

In fact, all the tools you need are right in front of you:

If you're reading this, you're probably in possession of all the technology you need to make all of your own content

It's important for me to acknowledge that you can create all the media required to effectively communicate the benefits of what you bring to the world.
Practically anyone can create and deploy media on the worldwide web.
The empirical fact that "production fidelity" is not necessarily important is hugely significant.
The intent behind the core message is far more important in the long run.

For the first time in human history, freely available (and 'almost-free') digital tools now exist which allow your efforts to be presented to exactly the right people on a global scale.

This can be done by each individual, if they have sufficient time to do so. Directly presenting your visual message to the world is a matter of:

  1. Using media creation suites to generate a good volume of media
  2. Deploying that media via the various digital platforms that have been built to harness the power of the internet in bringing groups of people into each platform's network.
These platforms will inevitably rise and fall in relevance with regard to networking and communicating with interested parties over the course of your life, but they are the most powerful media-distribution tools that have ever existed at such incredibly low cost, and tools that practically everybody can use to share their message and collaborate in their endeavours.

This infographic features quotes from "The Orbital Perspective" by Ron Garan:
( Copyright 2015 Ronald J. Garan, Jr. ) Infographic about The Orbital Perspective by Ron Garan

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