As you may know, I am scheduled to present a talk on Lichtenbergianism at the Newnan Carnegie Library a week from today, at 2 pm.  I've been working on the dazzling slideshow to accompany the talk, and a couple of weeks ago I realized that because I bought a new laptop, none of my old remotes would work.  (tl;dr: they're infrared, the new laptop is not)

I found one that appealed to me and bought it, and it works quite well.  So that's good.

This morning, as I was casting about for something to write about today, I happened to notice the user guide that came with the remote:

Notice anything about it?  Take a closer look:

The upper corner of the spine has been chomped out.

I can maybe guess what happened here.  The remote was designed and manufactured, the user guide was designed and printed, the packaging was designed and made, and then when the packaging process began, it was discovered that the user guide wouldn't fit.

Someone goofed, and what should have been ABANDONMENT became SUCCESSIVE APPROXIMATION at the last minute: they had to go back and chomp out a little nick in the corner so that the guide would fit into the blister pack.  Oy.

Still, what a great example of how the process works: you encounter an issue in your work, and you cycle back through it to make corrections.  I imagine that Targus then redesigned the packaging or the guide, whichever was easier/cheaper.  (I'm betting the guide: just shave that 3/16" off the outer edge and you're good to go.)

Also, it points up the importance of GESTALT in these matters.  Always take a step back and look over the whole picture.  Or in this case, do a dry run with mock-ups.

Which reminds me that I need to do a couple of dry runs with my presentation.  I'd hate to have to gnaw my own leg off in the middle of the talk just because I had overlooked a tiny corner somewhere.


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