We've made a few changes...here's why

Some of you may have noticed a few differences recently in the look of The Conversation.

Our logo that appears at the top of the page has had a very subtle reworking – we’ve refined the speech bubble icon to optimize display across print and web applications. To improve accessibility, we’ll be updating our use of colours and typography. Examples of this transition can currently be seen in our heading font (we're now using Montserrat for headlines instead of Helvetica), links, footers and general graphic design – with more enhancements to follow.

As faithful readers, I wanted to share with you a few thoughts from Zoe Jazz, the Design Lead for The Conversation, who is managing this global initiative.

“We are grateful that our loyal readers deeply understand our brand, our mission and our values. There’s an opportunity to better demonstrate our point of difference to first-time readers. What we’ve done so far and what’s coming is more than just a ‘visual’ change. Our goal is to be more readable, inclusive, accessible, localized and sustainable so we can democratize knowledge to a wider audience. An accessible design system will allow us to live up to who we are and what we stand for. We hope our readers will appreciate these changes.”

In the spirit of great design, I’ve assembled a few of my favourite design-themed stories from The Conversation global network.

Have a great weekend. I'm heading out for some holidays, so you'll be hearing from other members of our editorial team next week.

Scott White


Designing Weekend Reads

Five 3D printing myths

Ahmad Beltagui, Aston University; Achilleas Sesis, Kingston University; Nikolaos Stylos, University of Bristol

Why you shouldn't be afraid: it won't steal our jobs or destroy the environment.

Interior design of the future will seem like magic

Sara Nabil, Newcastle University

Many homes are already smart – but they're about to get much smarter.

Che Guevara: The face that launched a thousand…

Maria-Carolina Cambre, Concordia University

Che Guevara's image has been used for everything from fashion shows to revolutionary posters. But his image still means something and represents change and resistance by everyday people. Why?

Pow! Comics are a way to improve queer men’s body image

Phillip Joy, Dalhousie University; Matthew Numer, Dalhousie University; Megan Aston, Dalhousie University; Stephanie Gauvin, Queen's University, Ontario

Queer men's comics are contributing to changing cultural narratives about what queer men’s bodies should be, and health researchers are taking note.

Design and repair must work together to undo our legacy of waste

Tom Lee, University of Technology Sydney; Alexandra Crosby, University of Technology Sydney; Clare Cooper, University of Technology Sydney; Jesse Adams Stein, University of Technology Sydney; Katherine Scardifield, University of Technology Sydney

With the benefit of hindsight, we might finally see that the iPhone was the opposite of minimalism.

Art and design schools must cultivate creators, not theorists

Ted Hunter, OCADU

Even as our world goes digital, there will always be an appetite for craftsmanship, for art and for the work only human hands can truly bring to life. Art and design schools should celebrate creators.

Curious Kids: why do we have a QWERTY keyboard instead of putting the letters in alphabetical order?

Geoff Cumming, La Trobe University

The earliest typewriters had the letter keys in alphabetical order. The trouble was that if you hit two keys quickly the levers would jam.

Better design could make mobile devices easier for seniors to use

Edward Henry Steinfeld, University at Buffalo, The State University of New York

Each device is complex in its own right, and trying to use them together in many different settings makes things even more complicated.