is a blog about design, technology and culture written by Khoi Vinh, and has been more or less continuously published since December 2000 in New York City. Khoi is currently Principal Designer at Adobe, Design Chair at Wildcard and co-founder of Kidpost. Previously, Khoi was co-founder and CEO of Mixel (acquired by Etsy, Inc.), Design Director of The New York Times Online, and co-founder of the design studio Behavior, LLC. He is the author of “Ordering Disorder: Grid Principles for Web Design,” and was named one of Fast Company’s “fifty most influential designers in America.” Khoi lives in Crown Heights, Brooklyn with his wife and three children. Refer to the advertising and sponsorship page for inquiries.+
Earlier this year, Italian food conglomerate Ferrero used an algorithm to redesign the labels for its beloved sweetened hazelnut cocoa spread and sugar blast delivery mechanism Nutella. I know what you’re thinking: another example of data-driven “optimization” encroaching on the art of design. Well in some ways it’s actually worse news: rather than relying on an algorithm to create something soulessly efficient, Ferrero used the technology to generate an almost inconceivable variety of creative expression. The project combined dozens of different patterns and colors to create seven million individually unique Nutella labels for the Italian market which apparently sold like hotcakes—or at least, um, like a delicious spread that tastes great on hotcakes. The results are actually completely charming. I mean just look at these:
We’re all doomed.
More at inc.com.+