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Visualising quantum mechanics

Visualising quantum mechanics

That is an ambitious title to start my first blog post after my return from a summer holiday in Asia!

Through a series of coincidences I ended up reading through a number of popular science books about quantum mechanics. I remember getting all carried away in the briefing session of a presentation design project for a startup in the field of quantum computing. My academic knowledge of this field was basically high school chemistry, so I added this topic to the list of things that needed a refresh. A holiday was the perfect occasion. I am sure I was the only one at the side of the pool dusting of theoretical physics knowledge.

From a presentation perspective, the fascinating problem that quantum mechanics struggles with a the lack of either a visual or verbal language to describe concepts. The mathematics is water tight and has proven to be really useful (lasers, semiconductors, LEDs, etc. etc.). But when you try to take a step back and want to understand what it actually all means in the context of your daily routines, things get confusing.

It is all the result of some form of Anamorphosis, projections of phenomena that get scrambled when angles or dimensions no longer line up. Every scientist is looking for that ultimate simple underlying concept that can explain/visualise/link quantum on a small scale to the more traditional physics that we see everywhere around us at a human scale.

In case you are interested, here are 2 books on the subject: Beyond Weird, and What is Real?.

Photo by Linus Mimietz on Unsplash

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More creativity

More creativity

Some tips on creativity from a book on music production that I recently read: Music Habits, The Mental Game, by Jason Timothy. Most of them are applicable to any creative activity, and that includes presentation design. Here are some that stuck with me (in random order):

  • Have a note book / recording device at hand at any time to write down good ideas you will for sure forget 5 seconds later
  • Kill social media distractions
  • Learn what times of the day you are most creative, and don't do your monthly accounting during that time
  • Productive and creative are not the same thing
  • When your brain wants to be distracted it could very well be that you are on to something difficult that nobody has ever done before, keep on pushing
  • The genius just tried harder and for more years than you did
  • Be yourself, find your own style, you can never catch up by imitating someone else's
  • Don't blatantly steal, but instead, write down what inspired you in a piece of art, put it away for 2 weeks, then look back at it again and build on the attributes of the work, rather than the exact same thing
  • Finnish your projects all the way to the end, and do lots of projects
  • Watching more tutorials, reading more books, buying more tools will not really help if you are not applying what you learned/bought instantly. Get good at using the tools you have
  • If you want to build a habit, you have to do it every day, no excuses, even if it is just 15 minutes

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Free presentation design resources

Free presentation design resources

This may sound like a link bait title, but there is a lot of useful stuff buried in the archives of my blog that is there free for you to use. Click the "3 dots" at the top right of the site to access a drop down menu with more options. Among them: 

And of course there is the full version of my book about presentation design that can be accessed free of charge.


Art: Jan Davidsz. de Heem, Still-Life of Books, 1628

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My iBook abour presentation design is now free

My iBook abour presentation design is now free

I now marked down the price of my iBook "Pitch It!" down to $0. The whole iBooks experience has been an interesting one. First I thought that publishing a book through Apple's platform would be like writing software: updates would automatically be pushed to all readers. The iBook format would also use all the interactive/touch features of the iPad.

Two and a half years later I must conclude that web design engines such as Squarespace have now become so powerful that they match iBook's interactive capabilities. I have ported my entire book here (it is free as well). It works great on iPad, but also on other tablet devices, mobile phones, desktop screens. The source code is also easier to maintain and update.


Art: Degas, The Rehearsal, 1873

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Useful presentation design tools and resources

Useful presentation design tools and resources

As most of my clients outside Israel are enjoying the X-mas break, I have some time to clean up my web site further (no holiday here in Tel Aviv). I added a bunch of presentation design resources on the site.

  • Presentation design books. The flurry of new presentation design book releases seems to have faded a bit over the past years. Has all that needs to be said, been said, or did I miss anything?
  • Presentation design tools. A few neat software tools that can make the life of a presentation designer easier.
  • Sources of presentation images. There are more and more sites out there that offer free stock images under a creative commons license. These images are free, look real, BUT the library sizes are still small, and search is limited.
  • The blog search archive. Now that I moved away from Blogger, it is harder to add sidebars with search boxes, archive links, and tag clouds to the blog. Hence, the dedicated search page for access to 6.5 years of posts (more than 1700 in December 2014).

I hope you find it useful, and let me know suggestions to add more resources.


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