Here’s a fascinating short documentary (about 11 min.) on the Hong Kong neon sign industry, which was at its peak in the ’80s and ’90s but is now in serious decline with businesses installing LED signs now.

And here’s a crazy fact I bet you didn’t know: when a glassworker is designing the a neon sign, the tube’s start and stop points are determined not so much by the letter form but by where he’ll be able to most easily bend the glass without burning his hands.

(via Hoefler and Rands)

The Making of Neon Signs

It started with a Kickstarter campaign earlier this spring. The Planet Money team sold 25,000 t-shirts (just plain ‘ole shirts made by Jockey) and then tracked the creation of that shirt all around the world — from the cotton seed to the end product.

The reporting, the short videos, the writing — the whole website — is extremely well done. This is definitely worth reading through and watching all the videos. I’d start with the Kickstarter video, since that sets the stage for the final product.

Planet Money Makes A T-Shirt

Very cute and clever video:

‘Skew’ turns the idea of skeuomorphism on it’s head: we re-made some well known skeuomorphic interface designs in the materials and objects they were trying to imitate; as well as subtly commenting on the mundane cycle of the digital day-to-day.

If you can, watch it from your iPhone.

Also: here’s the making of that shows how they shot the video and what the apps are made of.

‘Skew’

Beautiful short video by Stephen Kenn. From the description:

The Encounter Collection by Stephen Kenn explores the significant act of passing an object on from one generation to the next. It is in this exchange, accompanied by words of wisdom, that a boy is often called to a life of courage. While aware that everyone’s life experience is unique, and often painful, this film focuses on the experience of a boy losing his father and yet retaining the love and passion that was intended for him.

‘The Encounter Collection’

XOXO is about people who use technology to build thing they’re proud of and do the work that they love. Though I’m bummed I wasn’t able to be at XOXO this year, I’m not that bummed because I had very good reason: my wife’s and my 2nd son, Giovanni, was born just a few days before the festival.

Fortunately, I’ve been able to attend vicariously thanks to the event videos of each speaker. So far I’ve watched Marco Arment’s talk on fear and competition, Cable Sasser’s talk on stress and pressure, and Maciej CegÅ‚owski on simplicity and other things.

Each of these talks were incredibly inspiring and encouraging to me.

The 2013 XOXO Festival Speaker Videos