Musings on designing experiences & (re)engineering complexity

May 2021

Lessons and Opportunities

There’s been some decent attention in the past few weeks to Avanceé (for good reason), and some of the resulting conversations have led to a bit of “well yes, this is why this initiative exists.” Maybe a bit harder to frame to some, there is a shape of some of what passes here as both lesson and opportunity worth sharing.

For example, one of the lessons has come as a result of an on-going experiement around rings, NFC, and alternate coin technologies. Was chatting with a friend about his endeavor and he started to get excited about this “new thing called NFC” he came across. Seeing the opportunity to engage fans and promoters more being enabled by this got him talking about and looking at physical artifacts unlocking audial and virtual experiences. More than simply being just another draw to a newsletter or recording, he started going on about what it meant to have folks take a piece of what he’s embedded into his music with folks. Showed him a few things, as well as pointing to how his mobile can program those experiences, and now there’s some neat, magical things underway for LJR Music (you should check him out - @lukejroberts).

With another group, we’ve started a conversation about what it means to co-create organizational strategy in the educational space as items adjust to this new normal. While it is very clear things aren’t going to stay virtual, there’s also a healthier acknowledgment from para-educational efforts of the need to be more agile, humane, and technological in order to continue to meet or exceed community impacts. Suffice to say, the pen cannot sit in the hands of just an executive director or board if an organization is going to pen better opportunities.

Watching one of Natalia Design’s recent YouTube videos (@natalkadesign) also offers some awesome perspective on what it means to follow those lessons and opportunities. For some of the efforts, Avanceé has been a quiet mentor, for others, a strategic lighthouse. Yet, it’s being present in mind, and focused enough with certain actions, to take those lessons and create something which enables others a canvas or pen to draw from.

Where this effort might not sit within the shape of what’s common is in a literal eschewing of conventional signals. There’s no YT/IG channels, there is no book. There’s experiments, a stream not much different than a series of fractal branches. And when a lake/oasis is found, attention is given to the lessons of the collections. Then something either releases, or is branched into something else. Every pen stroke here is valuable, just not each one needs to be of the same tonal intensity.

These are the lessons and opportunities Avanceé continually reveals. Maybe valuable to some (if so, let’s chat), maybe not quite clear enough for you to grab onto and do anything with (that’s ok). What should be clear is that there’s a focus here, and a steadiness. What becomes of it is merely forward.