Week #208

Friday, February 6th, 02015 at 15:51 UTC

Happy 4th Birthday! Week #208/52 weeks = 4 years.

It is week #208 and, as predicted, it has been full of meetings.

At the start of each week, we write down a short list of things we plan on working on or accomplishing during the week. We also have a big board with plenty of index cards and post-its, but this short list is more personal. We keep it in our weeknotes notebooks where we can much more easily annotate and keep track of progress. Sometimes we over-estimate what we can do. There are 8 things on the list and barely 3 got done, but that doesn’t mean the week was a failure. We did have plenty of very informative meetings.

We had a short phone meeting with some folks in London would are deep into visualising their data for their customers and would love some feedback. We put together a proposal for some onsite training, information gathering and some hourly work to flush out their needs. Now we’ll see if what we can do and their expectations match and if the price and timing is right.

Other meetings this week revolved around our Virkisfell project. In week #207 we had a phone meeting with an organisation in Norway, this week we met with two here in Iceland and scheduled another one with a group in Northern Ireland. Some good news, some bad. We’re learning more and more about what these organisations already have in place and what is lacking. Then the kicker, that no one has an money. Things are still moving forward and our goal is to apply for grant money in September, so spending the time now to do research, line-up development partners and get organised will hopefully pay off by increasing our odds of getting funding.

We also met with an old co-worked back in the days of our time with other companies. He’s got a small start-up doing some very interesting projects which would dove-tail nicely into some of our work on the “one-take” project. So we met-up and had some interesting discussions about other start-ups in Iceland, funding possibilities and generally caught-up on what’s been happening. Something will certainly come out of that meeting some day in the future.


This week our Tyvek paper arrived. Thanks to Icelandic customs, it nearly doubled in price – no one fully understands how and what you are paying for in toll and customs fees in this country! Needless to say, our projects can now begin to move forward. 02015 is to be a year focusing on paper. We’ve done a lot of paper projects in the past, but this year is to be something we focus more on. Tyvek is a recyclable paper which is water resistant and feels almost like cloth. We have several ideas of things to create using the tyvek, but our main prototype is a sort of small day bag. Something you might use if you are travelling for 1-2 days or just going to the beach or the gym.

The main impetus for this project was the local airlines are now charging for carry-on baggage over a certain weight. We took out our carry-on backpacks and bags and they were weighing-in around 1-1.5kg. That was 10-15% of our carry-on allowance in just the tool to carry things. Tyvek is incredibly light and strong and if we are creating our own bag, we get to set the rules and create it to our needs. At the moment the design fits well under the carry-on dimensions limit and weights in at around 50g. If we can maintain such a light weight our bag goes from 10% of our baggage allowance to only 0.1% that’s 3 orders of magnitude lighter! Now, in reality we haven’t decided if we’ll use velcro or a zipper or buttons or something else. The design is pulled in (at least) 4 different directions. We want to maintain a bag that is as light as possible, while being as recyclable as possible, while not being super expensive, while also handling a reasonable amount of weight. There will be trade-offs as the design comes together, but atleast the first steps of gathering the materials and designs have been completed, now we’re onto prototypes.

If you do a lot of small trips or need a new gym bag, do get in touch. We’ll need some early testers willing to put this paper bag to the test.


Some friends are heading off to Lisbon, Portugal in a few weeks. We’ve been a few times, but there is one thing we do with every visit and that is to head off to a small looking bakery in Belem and have some pastries. You can see/smell why this place is so special.

Digital is fun and interesting, but the analog world still demands a lot of respect. This is a master glass-smith creating beautiful sculptures through the cold glass working method. Even after watching this video a few times, and knowing that everything is glued together, it is still mesmerising.

Finally, we’ll end on a beautiful data viz mapping project. This is from London. They took the 30 distinct areas of the city and rather than geographically and specially accurately split them up, the converted them as best they could into squares. From there, they adding in the iconic Thames river as best they could. This gave them a predictable square area to render smaller charts for each of these areas. The results are great and have us thinking if something similar could be done in Iceland or Reykjavik.