What's happened to the website? / by Dan Lockton

Unless you always read via RSS, you've probably noticed that this site's changed a bit in the last few days. It has a new style, new layout and even a pretentious/over-complex new name: fulminate // Architectures of Control. Why have I done this? Expansion of coverage

Simply, I want to expand the subjects I blog about, while very much continuing and deepening the more focused research into architectures of control, without losing you, the audience. In many cases there are ideas which have spun off from the research which are only tangentially related (things generally do spin off tangentially, of course) but which are nevertheless fascinating.

I thought hard about how to do this expansion, and decided to practise what I preach, and do what respects the user the most and still helps me: don't land you with a load of unwanted posts about irrelevance, but do show you the stuff I'd like to talk about beyond architectures of control (don't worry, it's still mostly about design, technology and society), while giving you the option to stick with what you like (the posts on architectures of control).

So, if you want to stick purely with the Architectures of Control posts, past and future, you can do so here. You can also subscribe to a dedicated feed for these posts. If anything this will be more focused than before, since my occasional off-topic commentary and announcements won't appear here.

To read the full blog - which is called Fulminate (see below for an explanation) - stay right where you are. architectures.danlockton.co.uk, or fulminate.co.uk, will bring you to the full blog, of which the architectures of control posts will still comprise the majority. Of course, it is my hope that many readers will be interested enough to read Fulminate rather than just Architectures of Control, but I'm not going to force it on you.

Splitting the blog entirely would have meant starting from scratch, and it seemed silly to do that. If nothing else, the subjects under discussion will have so much linking and commonality that it would mean a lot of cross-posting anyway. Fulminate's tagline is "Design, technology and society," and architectures of control are part of that.

Note too that I've dropped the "in Design" bit from "Architectures of Control", as suggested by a couple of commenters here. With 'design' in the tagline (which hasn't at time of writing found a place in the header), this should still make it clear that the site is about design and the way it affects the world.

Why Fulminate?

'Fulminate' comes from the Latin fulmen, lightning. Lightning interests me. It has great potential.

In modern usage, 'fulminate' means a number of things:

* to occur suddenly with great intensity * to explode or detonate, loudly with sudden violence * to criticize severely

Some of that possibly sounds a bit negative. But then, fulminates are also, of course, friction-sensitive explosives. Silver fulminate, used in Party Poppers and 'Devil Bangers', has thus played a rôle in many of our childhoods as something exciting, fun, mischievous, and boundary-testing.

Also, there aren't that many short, memorable dictionary words left as available domain names. I'd registered fulminate.co.uk in 2005 as a possible name for a design venture which never happened; it seemed much more appropriate for a blog.

The whole fulminate // Architectures of Control thing is a bit of a branding experiment. Renaming the blog Fulminate overnight would have confused people, at least in my mind. If I were a branding consultant, I would say that "the fashionably lower-case 'fulminate' thus becomes an endorser brand (using Wally Olins' terminology) for the established 'Architectures of Control' term. The double solidi (the slashes) indicate more than simply either-or; they imply some sort of hierarchy, as well as being more visually interesting."

Keep reading. There's some exciting stuff on the way.