Sam's Blog

Suspending Patreon

Posted on 02 Sep 2019

I originally wrote a version of this post on Patreon itself but suspending my page hides my posts on there. Oops.

There’s been a lot of change for me over the past year or two, in real life and as a member of the free software community (like my recent joining of Purism), that has shifted my focus away from why I originally launched a Patreon, so I felt it was time to deactivate my creator page.

The support I got on Patreon for my humble projects and community participation over the many months my page was active will always be much appreciated! Having a Patreon (or some other kind of small recurring financial support service) as a free software contributor fueled not only my ability to contribution but my enthusiasm for free software. Support for small independent free software developers, designers, contributors and projects from folks in the community (not just through things like Patreon) goes a long way and I look forward to shifting into a more supportive role myself.

I’m going forward with gratitude to the community, so much thanks to all the folks who were my patrons. Go forth and spread the love! ❤️

How to Run a Usability Test

Posted on 27 Aug 2019

One of the most important steps of the design process is “usability testing”, it gives designers the chance to put themselves in other people’s shoes by gathering direct feedback from people in real time to determine how usable an interface may be. This is just as important for free and open source software development process as it is any other.

Though free software projects often lack sufficient resources for other more extensive testing methods, there are some basic techniques that can be done by non-experts with just a bit of planning and time—anyone can do this!

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Joining Purism!

Posted on 30 Jul 2019

Personal news time! Starting in August I’m going to be joining the team at Purism working on the design of PureOS and related software products, but what I’m very excited about is that I get to continue to work on GNOME design!

Purism Logo

I have to thank Purism for even offering me this opportunity it is beyond my wildest expectations that I would get to to work on Free Software professionally let alone in design!

Taking the "User" out of Design

Posted on 20 Feb 2019

As a designer, I’ve never been totally comfortable with referring to people as “users”. I find the term unethical as it minimizes the idea that people have any individuality or sense of agency, and I believe the term is obsolete as it is rooted in a past when the connection between a person using a computer and the computer itself was clear, which is no longer the case in the modern age.

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Basic Linux Virtualization with KVM

Posted on 16 Feb 2019

By no measure, am I an expert on all the ins and outs of virtualization, hell, before I started looking into this stuff a “hypervisor” to me was just a really cool visor.

Geordi La Forge

But after a reading a bunch of documentation, blog posts and StackExchange entries, I think I have enough of a basic understanding—or at least I have learnt enough to get it to work for my limited use case—to write some instructions.

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