Welcome to CoFactors, the research + development crucible for Catalyst Group Design. Here, we expand and codify our observations and experience independent of clientdriven situations. Our position as consultants gives us an exceptionally broad view of the Web and interface design issues + culture. Feel free to link to our blog, send feedback, download white papers or even to read about developments in our own business.

A Poem entitled “How the Web has Changed my Life”

By Catalyst Senior UI Designer Mike Parker

I usta listen to music on a walkman at work.

Then I started downloading mp3 to my work computer and listening to them using winamp

Then I started using streaming sites to listen to music… the first being spunik7.com

Then I got ipod and filled it up with music

Now when I’m bored with the 5k songs on my ipod I listen to music via musician homepages on myspace… or via music videos posted to youtube.com

* note on myspace – find the desired musician using google (myspace name-of-musician). You can find anything, whereas you can’t find anything using myspaces’ internal search.

George Carlin, RIP

For me, George Carlin defined “funny.”

At the tender age of 15, I memorized every word of his 1982 post-heart-attack-recovery concert at Carnegie Hall (which you can watch here in its entirety — thank you Google). It wasn’t just his ability to see the irony and absurdity in everyday language and situations — or the ensemble of characters and voices he housed (each with their own peculiar brand of lunacy). Carlin perfected the Outraged Curmudgeon — a character which, I can now admit, has probably exerted an inappropriate degree of influence on the formation of my own personality!

So, go watch that video… It’s dirty and pretty outrageous at times, but there is definitely a kind of genius at work.

TED Again

A while back, I overdosed on TED talks. All that brilliance and creativity wore thin after a bit, so I took a break. I was lured back recently by a talk given by one of my favorite food writers Mark Bittman. Bittman’s basic premise is that the effects of industrial food production on a worldwide scale, particularly meat “production,” is comparable to the threat of nuclear holocaust… Full Article »

Work it! This month’s Client Shout-Out

Seems like the Client shout-outs are coming fast and furious these days! Wish I could say the same about my blog posts

But enough about my issues! I’m here to shout-out to our client Rodale Publications about the launch of You24.com — a very cool site for the west coast gym 24 Hour Fitness.

In this case, major kudos are due to Chloe Walker (Creative Director) and Janine Coover (Sr. Usability Consultant) for bringing this one in for a landing. We did user interface design, visual design, and HTML on this one.

A BIG Client Shout-Out

We are VERY excited to congratulate our friends at Christie’s on the launch of their new website. Catalyst provided the underlying user interface design for the site as well as the new visual design and HTML templates.

Here’s a snip from the press release:

Michael O’Neal, Christie’s Digital Media Director, says, “With new features designed to enhance clients’ online experience, improve site functionality and deliver superior service, the redesign of christies.com is a significant means for Christie’s to engage our clients throughout their collecting journey with us.

As the art market becomes increasingly globalized with potential buyers that are geographically dispersed, Christie’s is keeping pace with the changing needs of its existing and potential clients by offering new capabilities to enhance the remote auction process.

With increasing customization and transparency, we are positioning christies.com as a must-see destination for collectors. Visitors to the site can now easily explore property at a variety of price points as well as view Featured Auctions.”