Show cover of Podcast Awesome

Podcast Awesome

On Podcast Awesome we talk to members of the Font Awesome team about icons, design, tech, business, and of course, nerdery. 


Nerd Show and Tell: Meet Konnor Rogers
Episode Summary:In this episode of Podcast Awesome we have an inspiring chat with Konnor Rogers, a developer at Web Awesome with a fascinating career trajectory. Starting his professional life as a paramedic and self-teaching his way into web development, Connor's journey epitomizes the relentless pursuit of a  career in technology. Konnor shares insights into his transition from paramedic to coder, highlighting the challenges of being self-taught and the breakthrough opportunities that led to his role alongside Corey at Web Awesome. He discusses current projects such as component development, the intricacies of form association, and the excitement of tackling the much-anticipated Kickstarter stretch goals like date pickers and rich text editors. Listeners can expect to hear a developer-centric conversation enriched with the technical specifics of Web Awesome's ongoing efforts to deliver awesome components to customers.  Timestamp | Summary2:58 | From Paramedic to Web Developer: A Journey of Learning4:05 | Balancing Education, Work, and Family Life4:38 | Discovering and Contributing to Shoelace Components5:04 | From Startup to Microsoft and Beyond6:45 | Unconventional Paths to Tech Careers and Self-Taught Success9:40 | Improving Form Controls in Web Development12:58 | Refining Radio Button Accessibility and Behavior14:09 | Challenges of Building an Accessible Date Picker Component17:02 | Embracing Iterative Progress in Product Development17:03 | Challenges in Building Advanced Web Components20:00 | Early Mornings and Unusual Paramedic Tales23:15 | Discussing Favorite Fonts, Icons, and Web Components25:11 | Competitive Gaming and Balancing Family Life26:42 | Recognizing Personal Limits with Hobby EnthusiasmResources:The Odin Project: An open-source project that provides a free education in web development. The Odin ProjectSyntax FM podcast: A popular tech podcast discussing web development topics that Connor mentioned during the conversation. Syntax FMFont Awesome: Font Awesome WebsiteWeb Awesome: Kickstarter Website  Twitter: @fontawesomeThe Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns and Lemon ProductionsStay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
27:10 6/18/24
Nerd Show and Tell: Meet Lindsay Miller
Episode Summary:In this episode of Podcast Awesome, we chat with the Lindsay Miller, the first brave soul from the Web Awesome team to take the hot seat on the Nerd Show and Tell. Beginning with a look into the inception of Lindsay's career and her interaction with Font Awesome before joining the Web Awesome team, we discuss the significance of a design system — a topic often shrouded in industry jargon yet fundamental to cohesive digital experiences. Lindsay also recounts  being part of the recent Web Awesome Kickstarter campaign, which hit the 700,000 milestone. Timestamp | Summary0:00 | Chatting Design, Tech, and Font Awesome with Lindsay Miller3:14 | From Solo Designer to Font Awesome Enthusiast4:13 | Embracing Company Culture and Innovative Products6:53 | From Childhood CSS Fascination to UX/UI Professional10:32 | Landing the Dream Job (While Experiencing Imposter Syndrome)14:56 | Addressing Inconsistencies in Development Practices15:54 | Design Systems: Building Blocks for Developer Efficiency19:47 | Developing and Perfecting Thematic Web Design Systems23:47 | Kickstarter Success Brings Exciting Yet Daunting Challenges24:36 | The Complexities of Building an Accessible Date Picker27:59 | Icon Design Delights and the Font Awesome Possum32:37 | Homeownership Inspires Mario-Inspired Wall Art34:59 | Nostalgic Reflections on Star Wars and Creative InspirationsResources:Font Awesome: Font Awesome WebsiteWeb Awesome: Kickstarter Website  Twitter: @fontawesomeThe Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns and Lemon ProductionsStay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
30:33 6/4/24
Introducing the Icon Wizard: Where F.A.R.T.S. Become Arts
Designing custom icons is a gas-tly important part of modern design. It can make or break a brand, and sometimes you just need to let one rip and add a bit of spice to a website or app. However, creating custom icons can be a real stinker – a time-consuming and tedious task that can leave you feeling deflated. But don't worry, the Font Awesome team has a new feature that's a real breath of fresh air: The Icon Wizard — otherwise known by the internal code name, F.A.R.T.S (Font Awesome Reusable Tidbits and Shapes.) The Icon Wizard is a new-ish Font Awesome feature that allows Pro users to add icon modifiers, which allows for nearly limitless icon options! Join us as we yuck it up with Jory Raphael, Mike Wilkerson, and Ed Emanuel from the Font Awesome team as we channel our inner middle schooler humor (and talk about the making of very serious software, of course!)The project was conceived during the team's Snacktivities, which are small creative projects undertaken during their gatherings. While the initial concept did not focus on customizing icons, it evolved into the idea of applying modifiers to icons to create unique variations. The team's enthusiasm and dedication to the project led to its development during their collaborative sessions.The Icon Wizard project presented challenges, such as user interface design and technical issues related to SVG fill rules. Despite these obstacles, the team worked together to overcome them and create a functional and user-friendly feature. This feature allowed users to select and apply modifiers to icons, providing them with the flexibility to customize icons according to their preferences.Aside from the obviously humorous nature of this conversation, the tea, explores the practicality of the feature, highlighting the ability to add useful modifiers like a slash or a circle-plus to any icon in different styles. The team's playful banter and creative thinking during the development process added a fun and lighthearted element to the project, showcasing their innovative and humorous approach to icon design and customization.---------------------Time Stamps [00:00:43] Icon Wizard project and F.A.R.T.S.[00:04:34] Customizable Icons.[00:09:38] Challenges with SVG fill rules.[00:11:16] SVG path winding rules.[00:14:43] Modifier challenges and favorites.[00:19:25] Icon Wizard and modifiers.[00:22:26] Burrito modifiers and bacon.------------------Show Notes Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns and Lemon ProductionsStay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
24:19 5/21/24
Icons Made Easy: Rob Explains Font Awesome Pro
In this episode of Podcast Awesome, Matt talks with Font Awesome's principal engineer, Rob Madole, about Font Awesome Pro. At Font Awesome, we're always saying that while icons aren't going to change the world, we want to make it seamless to use. It's all about the versatility of Font Awesome Kits, their role in offering project-specific solutions, and the balance they achieve between feature richness and user friendliness. In the conversation, the duo explains that Font Awesome Kits are sort of like a "bag of holding" or Hermione's magic handbag from Harry Potter. They emphasize the importance of having multiple Kits for agency work or varied internal projects. These Kits allow for segregated management and efficient resource distribution. Another thing to notice is the difference between Font Awesome Pro and free. Pro users enjoy a wealth of icons and advanced features that significantly elevate their creative capabilities.Key Takeaways:Font Awesome Kits are pivotal for customizing icon sets, ensuring projects use only the necessary icons and minimizing site loading times.Pro users have access to a vast library of over 13,000 icons and advanced styles including solid, light, thin, duotone, and sharp.Kits offer the ability to add custom icons or modify existing ones using the platform’s tools, effectively catering to unique design needs.A Pro subscription not only unlocks premium icons but also includes a perpetual license, providing continued use of downloaded versions even after subscription cancellation.Font Awesome emphasizes real human support for technical issues, a service highly valued in the often impersonal tech realm.Resources:Font Awesome: Font Awesome WebsiteTwitter: @fontawesomeThe Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns and Lemon ProductionsStay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
35:49 5/7/24
Working Genius in Teams with Dave and Travis
Episode Summary:In this  episode we chat with Font Awesome founders, Travis Chase and Dave Gandy. We delve into the intricacies of team dynamics and working relationships within the Font Awesome team. Using Patrick Lencioni's 6 Types of Working Genius framework, the episode dissects the leadership styles, strengths, weaknesses, and the collaborative fabric that help make Font Awesome successful.Dave and Travis talk about how they navigate through frustrations in the workplace and strategies they've learned to capitalize on each other's strengths. Various aspects of the framework are highlighted, illustrating real-life examples where certain geniuses shine within the team's projects. Key Takeaways:Long-standing relationships between team members can lead to a deep understanding of each other's working styles and a healthier team environment.The Working Genius framework can be particularly useful in identifying and playing to the strengths of team members in various project phases.The 'Wonder' and 'Invention' geniuses play a pivotal role in the creative process, while 'Discernment' ensures ideas are viable.Understanding and accommodating for 'Working Frustrations' is crucial in team settings to avoid conflict and help productivity.Diversity in team geniuses is important not only to cover all areas of project development but also to foster unique perspectives to find solutions.Notable Quotes:"One of the creators of WuFU was one of our mentors in YC, was in that interview. And I just remember there was a point in which they started not only talking about business, but design in business, and how design business and how a company grows, how important it is. And it was just like two wonder bombs going off." - Travis"The differences between people are how in our own deficiencies, that's how they get covered over. We work with other people that have those as geniuses instead of frustrations, and that's how we all together work better together." - Dave"There's an infinite amount you don't know, and that's not the daily assumption and how you act, then the world is a very weird place around what we don't know." - Travis"We are amazingly good at fooling ourselves, especially around our own capabilities, our own importance, and our own intelligence." - DaveShow Notes: The Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns and Lemon ProductionsThe 6 Types of Working Genius Timestamp0:00:08 | Introduction to the podcast and discussion of working dynamics0:01:29 | Reflecting on working with Dave during the YC interview0:04:31 | Travis's working frustrations with Dave's wonder0:08:25 | Dave's working frustration with "E" (Enablement)0:09:23 | Importance of having all 6 working geniuses on a leadership team0:10:30 | Travis emphasizes the importance of not avoiding frustrations.0:11:35 | Dave asks about discernment and its importance.0:11:44 | Travis explains the working competencies of the team members.0:12:30 | Dave discusses Lindsay's unique perspective as a designer.0:13:32 | Travis and Dave discuss the critical role of discernment in design.0:14:32 | Travis and Dave talk about Brian's genius in scriptwriting.0:16:22 | Travis emphasizes the importance of collaboration and diverse perspectives.0:18:02 | Dave highlights the benefits of teamwork and listening to each other.Stay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
20:44 4/23/24
What the Eff is the "FACU"?
Maybe you've heard the news? The team at Font Awesome has recently rebranded Shoelace as "Web Awesome!" To celebrate the occasion, we launched a Kickstarter. And we couldn't kick off a rebrand without a new video.  Check it out! If you've been around these parts for very long, you know Font Awesome has a history of creating zany content, such as the Font Awesome 5 Kickstarter video from 2017. And for the Web Awesome video, we collaborated with the creative studio Knox Avenue once again.The Font Awesome promo videos have been a real source of pride for our team. They're not only a great marketing tool but the videos give us a chance to showcase the personality of the brand. As always, the actors involved in creating these videos were great to work with. We  were fortunate to get several of the characters you know and love — Rob, Milton and Albert — along with a few fresh faces too!  All of the actors and the whole Knox Avenue team were great to work with as always and the actors and crew members went above and beyond to helped bring the vision of the scripts to life.  Check out the video version of this podcast on the Kickstarter page! Stay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
05:54 4/16/24
Free Code, Future Sustainability
In this episode we chat with Font Awesome founder Dave Gandy about the journey of finding a sustainable business model while staying true to the open source model. We discuss the origin of Font Awesome, the power of open source software, and the concept of "actualized open source." Dave shares insights into the success of Font Awesome and their approach to monetizing the project while continuing to provide value to the open source community. They also discuss the launch of their new project, Web Awesome, and their Kickstarter campaign. Tune in to learn more about the intersection of open source and business.Key Takeaways:Font Awesome started as a solution to personal challenges with icons in web development and quickly turned into a global standard.The importance of Retina displays in driving the success of vector-based iconography, especially for Font Awesome.Balancing a profitable business model with the ethos of open source has resulted in continued improvement and distribution of free software.Actualized open source is not just about sustaining a project but enabling it to become everything it can be.Font Awesome maintains a commitment to not selling user data and providing a transparent business model based on value exchange.Notable Quotes:"Never let your morals get in the way of doing the right thing.""Can we build a company full of people that can actually trust each other?""Can the company and the open-source project be actualized? Can they be self-actualized?""Software has this crazy thing about it that's different from the real world. The real world there is a natural scarcity... But with software, whatever we can provide in software, we can copy and distribute for almost free.""What if we could be a place where people could become more of who they were made to be, right, of what they know is good about them?"Timestamp0:01:23 | The origin of Font Awesome as a solution to icon frustrations0:03:00 | Explanation of Retina displays and the significance for graphics0:04:04 | Font Awesome's advantage of using vector graphics for scalable icons0:06:00 | Decision to make Font Awesome an open source project0:08:32 | Font Awesome's rapid growth and the importance of GitHub for distribution0:09:19 | Realization of Font Awesome's potential and decision to seek funding0:10:23 | Building Font Awesome as a company instead of relying on external funding0:11:18 | Dave's preference to avoid fundraising and maintain control over the project0:11:58 | Open source software should not be begging for money0:13:15 | The challenge is to build a product that people will pay for0:14:57 | Font Awesome found a way to make payroll & sustain open source0:15:22 | Being a pro subscriber is similar to donating to open source0:17:10 | Transparency and trust are important in the business model0:20:15 | The goal is to achieve self-actualization in open source0:23:23 | Company's mission is to fulfill employees in life and workplace0:28:09 | Launching the web awesome Kickstarter for Shoelace (web awesome)0:30:10 | The goal is to grow open source exponentially and provide more value0:31:33 | Motivation should come from what's good enough about us, not what's not what's lacking.Show Notes: Font Awesome YouTube channelThe Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns and Lemon ProductionsStay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
33:32 4/2/24
The Art of Teamwork and the Working Genius Framework
Episode DescriptionHave you ever wondered which unique genius you bring to the table at work? In this podcast we chat with Jory Raphael, Rob Madole, and Lindsay Miller, as we dissect Patrick Lencioni's "6 Types of Working Genius" framework. It's not just about identifying whether you're a genius of enablement or invention; it's recognizing how these strengths play out in the real world. We all share tales of energy spikes and drains, revealing how a deep understanding of our working styles help level up our professional experiences and collaborations.Team chemistry is magical, isn't it? This episode peels back the curtain on the alchemy of team dynamics, celebrating moments when our diverse strengths lead to shared success. You'll hear about Travis, our team's unsung hero, whose knack for Galvanizing brings out the best in us, and how these discoveries about ourselves and each other can turn routine tasks into triumphs. It's about more than just completing projects; it's the shared victory dance when each team member's genius shines, transforming challenges into achievements.We wrap up with a candid look at the ebbs and flows of creating a Figma plugin, where trust and adaptability are the heroes of our story. It's a testament to the power of balancing skill with empathy and understanding that the journey toward success is rarely a straight line. --------------------------Highlights:0:01:54 - Exploring Working Geniuses and Competencies (80 Seconds)0:04:53 - Working Genius (57 Seconds)0:15:20 - Utilizing Working Geniuses in Leadership (66 Seconds)0:21:30 - Navigating Project Workflow and Decision Making (98 Seconds)0:24:42 - GDPR Cookie Consent Development Setback (96 Seconds)-------------------------Show notes:Check out last season's episode on Working GeniusThe Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns and Lemon ProductionsThe 6 Types of Working Genius Stay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
31:09 3/26/24
Demystifying Y Combinator
Episode Summary:In this episode of Podcast Awesome, we dive deep into the story of Font Awesome founders Dave Gandy and Travis Chase, as they reminisce about their remarkable journey through Y Combinator, the prestigious tech accelerator. The conversation offers listeners an exclusive look into the world of startups, challenges, and triumphs that come with being a part of such an intensive program.Dave and Travis recount the rigorous application process, their moment of acceptance, and the invaluable lessons learned during their time at YC. This episode demystifies the accelerator experience and provides real-world advice to aspiring YC entrepreneurs.Their tale is peppered with anecdotes, humor and hard-fought wisdom, drawing parallels from the TV series "Silicon Valley." Listeners will leave with a better understanding of what it takes to step into the ring of tech accelerators and come out with a clear direction.Key Takeaways:Y Combinator's rigorous selection process emphasizes the potential of the founders rather than just the product idea.The importance of preparation for the YC interview, including potential questions and understanding the background and interests of the partners.Building and nurturing relationships is key to both business and personal development.Notable Quotes:"All a startup is is something that's a lie that people believed long enough that it became the truth." - Dave"If you live your life doing what you think is right and working, when you see those chances arise, then there isn't really anything to regret." - Dave"The most recent round of YC just wrapped […] they had 20,000 applications and they accepted 1.4%." - DaveTimestamp0:02:15 | Importance of thinking big in startups0:04:43 | Y Combinator as a business trade school0:05:08 | Focus and community at Y Combinator0:09:37 | Y Combinator's selection process and emphasis on team0:10:41 | Y Combinator believes in betting on the right people, not just the idea.0:11:46 | VCs advise each other to bet on people, but it doesn't always work in practice.0:12:14 | YC focuses on betting on the people, even without a specific idea.0:13:17 | The importance of leaving everything on the table during the YC interview.0:16:07 | Craft a strong answer for how the you can become a billion-dollar company.0:19:44 | YC educates startups on the venture capital business model.0:22:24 | Feeling confident after the second interview0:25:44 | Receiving the call that they got into Y Combinator0:29:20 | Considering fundraising options: Kickstarter or venture capital0:29:48 | Y Combinator provides guidance on raising money and crafting pitches.0:33:43 | Decision to stay self-sufficient and profitable rather than raising series A.0:36:13 | Preparation and research are key for a successful YC application.0:40:27 | Identifying character through sacrifice and hard choices0:41:16 | The extensive interview process at Y Combinator0:42:02 | Building relationships with mentors and colleagues0:42:24 | Advice for entrepreneurs: listen to customers and build something they want0:43:18 | The core value of developing relationships with good peopleShow Notes:The Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns and Lemon ProductionsY CombinatorStay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
46:13 3/12/24
Pressure to Empowerment: Lessons From MIT
About the Guest:Dave Gandy is Font Awesome's Founder and an MIT alumnus who hails from Carl Junction, Missouri, and reflects on his experience transitioning from a small-town environment to the competitive halls of MIT. With a background rooted in both art and technology, Dave specialized in human-centric product design and has a strong belief in the interplay between creativity, empathy, and engineering. Detailing his educational journey, he conveys a profound understanding of personal growth through adversity, emphasizing how integral unique talents are to individual success.Episode Summary:In this profound discussion, Dave Gandy delves into the multifaceted experience of attending the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), providing a unique perspective that intertwines struggle, growth, and the eventual recognition of one's strengths. The conversation unveils the cultural nuances of MIT, the infamous acronym 'IHTFP', and the myriad emotions associated with the academic pressure cooker that is this renowned institution.Dave candidly shares his journey from a small town to the rigorous academic world of MIT, including the realities of cultural shift and academic preparedness. He discusses the intensity of the coursework, MIT's famous hacking culture, and the pivotal moments that led to self-discovery and personal growth. Filled with engaging anecdotes, Dave also illustrates the communal encounters and extracurricular exploits that colored his time at the institute.Key Takeaways:The acronym 'IHTFP' at MIT can stand for both 'I Hate This F***ing Place' and 'I Have Truly Found Paradise', reflecting the duality of the MIT experience.MIT pushes students to their limits, uncovering their limitations and potential, a crucial part of personal development that Dave attests can come with "good, healthy pain."Dave's unique combination of interests in art, technology, and human-centric design became his niche, setting him apart and allowing him to excel in areas beyond traditional academics.Experiences such as "roof and tunnel hacking" not only serve as a rite of passage but enforce creative problem-solving and ethical boundary-pushing among students.MIT's competitive atmosphere can induce significant stress and emotional upheaval, highlighting the importance of a solid personal identity and a supportive community.Notable Quotes:"Any real significant personal growth will not be had in life without a good bit of healthy kind of pain.""A company is really nothing more than a lie that people believe long enough until it becomes the truth.""The real challenge in life, a lot of times is, yeah, but what can I do about it? What are the solutions?"Timestamp0:02:14 | MIT experiences involve pain and questioning if it's worth it.0:05:10 | A teacher's encouragement made Dave consider MIT.0:08:07 | MIT experiences include dangerous and fun activities.0:11:31 | Hacking in relation to roof and tunnel hacking0:15:44 | The practical problem-solving skills gained from hacking0:19:52 | Dave reflects on discovering his own strengths and finding his sweet spot0:22:26 | Dave reflects on his experience at MIT and how it shaped him0:23:22 | The negative outcomes of being driven by emptiness0:26:39 | Embrace the right kind of pain for growth0:30:01 | Don't climb someone else's ladder of success0:32:07 | Dave reflects on their personal growth and values during their time at MIT0:34:07 | The brutal workload at MIT.Show Notes: The Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns and Lemon ProductionsStay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
35:05 2/27/24
Bridging the Gap: How Devs and Designers Can Work Better Together
In the tech industry, the dynamic between developers and designers looms large - and their collaboration (or lack thereof) influences the outcome of a project. These two distinct disciplines with their specialized terminologies and ways of thinking, often find the need to bridge the gap, to ensure a cohesive and functional deliverable. In this podcast we chat with Cory LaViska, Jory Raphael, and Noah Jacobus to discuss the challenges and experiences they've faced while collaborating as developers and designers. Key Takeaways:Communication is key in the collaboration between designers and developers.Working together from the beginning of a project leads to better outcomes.Having a shared understanding of each other's roles and constraints is crucial.Pairing designers and developers on projects fosters collaboration and creativity.Design systems like Shoelace provide a common ground for designers and developers.Quotes:"Communication is key. I think that's number one." - Cory"Devs and designers, we always have a dev and a designer paired together on a project." - Jory"Designers ask for the impossible a lot more than might be necessary." - Jory"Shoelace provides a common ground for both designers and developers to work from." - CoryShow Notes: Font Awesome websiteFont Awesome YouTube channelFigma pluginThe Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns and Lemon ProductionsStay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
28:38 2/15/24
Font Awesome's 2023 Year in Review
Episode Summary:In this episode of Podcast Awesome, we chat with Jory Raphael and Rob Madole from the Font Awesome team. They discuss the various projects and updates that Font Awesome has worked on in 2023, including the launch of Font Awesome Sharp, the creation of a Figma plugin, and improvements to Font Awesome's Kits and release process. They also touch on their partnership with Shoelace and hint at exciting things to come in the future. The episode provides a behind-the-scenes look at the work that goes into creating and maintaining Font Awesome, as well as insights into the world of icon design and web development.Key Takeaways:Font Awesome Sharp: Font Awesome Sharp is a new icon family introduced by Font Awesome. It features sharp, edgy icons that provide a different aesthetic compared to the classic Font Awesome icons with rounded corners.YouTube Channel and Podcast Awesome: Font Awesome has launched a YouTube channel where users can find screencasts and promotional videos related to Font Awesome. The team has also created Podcast Awesome, a podcast where they discuss icons, design, tech business, and more.Improvements to Kits: Font Awesome has made significant improvements to its kits, allowing users to customize and subset the icons they want to use. This helps improve performance and load times, making it easier for users to integrate Font Awesome into their projects.Partnership with Shoelace: Font Awesome has partnered with Shoelace, a popular web component library, to further enhance their offerings. The collaboration aims to provide users with even more awesome features and improvements.Future Work: Font Awesome has exciting projects in the pipeline, including integrated work with the Shoelace team and the development of new features and updates. The team is constantly working to improve Font Awesome and provide users with the best possible experience.Notable Quotes:"Font Awesome Sharp brings a new aesthetic to our icon library, with sharp and edgy icons that provide a different look and feel compared to our classic icons." - Jory Raphael"We've made significant improvements to our kits, allowing users to customize and subset the icons they want to use. This helps improve performance and load times, making it easier for users to integrate Font Awesome into their projects." - Rob Madole"Our partnership with Shoelace has been a game-changer. We're excited to work together and take Font Awesome to the next level, providing users with even more awesome features and improvements." - Jory RaphaelShow Notes:Font Awesome websiteFont Awesome YouTube channelFigma pluginThe Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns and Lemon ProductionsRetro video game sweep 8-bit coin soundTaking out a sword sound effect Intense 8-bit game music DJ airhorn sound effect Chiptune #5 interstitial Time stamps0:00:09Introduction to Podcast Awesome0:04:11Launch of Podcast Awesome0:04:31Launch Stay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
33:33 1/30/24
Why We Use "Shape Up" for Project Management
In this podcast Matt and Travis discuss Shape Up, a project management philosophy created by 37 Signals, the makers of Basecamp, and how it helps Font Awesome stay on track. Instead of trying to build everything at once, Font Awesome ships complete features. By using the Shape Up method, Font Awesome has been able to deliver products efficiently and effectively, which reduces the risk of delivering an unsatisfactory product.The traditional waterfall process, by contrast, can take a very long time to build a product that is often out of date by the time it is completed. During his career, Travis has worked with a variety of project management methodologies, including Agile, Scrum, and Kanban. In the end, the Font Awesome team has found that Shape Up works best, allowing them to ship consistently and at a pace that aligns with their philosophy of business and life. —-----------------------------------------------HIGHLIGHTS: "One of the surprising things and sort of a takeaway I took from reading Shape Up is that it's okay — It might even be expected that certain work gets abandoned and that shipping really is the highest priority and that backlogs kill productivity. And that kind of goes along with the philosophy, too, of work, that you have to have constraints and limits to actually allow creativity to flow. And you can't do everything. So you do have to have constraints. You do have to be able to say no. ""Dave and I take a lot of inspiration from the books that 37Signals put out like Rework and It Doesn't Have to be Crazy at Work. Those kinds of things. And trying to maybe do business differently, do our own spin on it, see what works for us based on all the places we've worked. And kind of how we would try to change things. And one of those things that I ran into — and I'll speak for me — ran into my career is you might get a solution to find we need this feature X and the software and we're going to give you three weeks to develop it."--------------------------------------------------TIMESTAMPS: 0:00:09 Shape Up Method and How Font Awesome Uses It0:02:41 Discussion on Traditional Waterfall and Agile Methodologies0:04:22 Agile and Kanban Methodologies for Software Development0:07:51 Product Development Lifecycle Using Shape Up Methodology0:09:15 Exploring the Benefits of Six-Week Splits and Two-Week Cooldowns for Software Delivery0:11:18 How Two Week Cooldowns Allow For Side-projects like “Space Awesome”. 0:12:39 An Overview of the Shape Up Workflow Process0:15:39 Shape Up and Font Awesome's Business Philosophy0:19:16 The Benefits of a 40-Hour Work Week and Embracing the Whole Person0:20:51 The Benefits of Allowing Creativity and Autonomy in the Workplace0:22:39 Exploring the Benefits of Font-Building Engine "Haunt Forge"0:23:56 The Icon Wizard and Building with Creative Constraints0:27:35 Iterative Development and the 37 Signals BaseCamp Methodology0:29:41 Summary of Discussion on Software Development Methodologies and Project Management Methodologies------------------NotesShape Up (Book) Always Be Shipping (and On Time for Dinner): Why We Use Shape Up The Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns and Lemon ProductionsStay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
32:33 11/7/23
Exploring Patrick Lencioni's 6 Types of Working Genius with Font Awesome Founder Dave Gandy
On this episode of Podcast Awesome, Matt chats with Font Awesome founder Dave Gandy about Patrick Lencioni's ideas behind Working Genius. They discuss how the six types of Working Genius help identify working strengths and weaknesses, creating more effective teams and getting more done efficiently. Dave explains how their company got introduced to Lencioni's ideas and how they started doing leadership training. They emphasize the importance of work culture and how it affects a company's success.TIME STAMPS —-------------------------[00:06:19] Six types of working genius.[00:09:53] Remote work relationships.[00:16:57] Wonder and innovation.[00:19:12] Taking the time for work.[00:23:09] Importance of being a domain expert.[00:24:55] Tenacity in the workplace.[00:27:58] Ideation process and meetings.[00:30:43] Working geniuses and efficiency.[00:33:59] Organizational health and satisfaction.—------------------------------------------NOTESThe Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns and Lemon ProductionsThe 6 Types of Working Genius Stay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
36:36 10/24/23
Nerd Show and Tell: Meet Jason Otero
In this episode of Podcast Awesome, we chat with software engineer Jason Otero about his recent work on Font Awesome Kits, the benefits of working on six-week splits, and his love for playing guitar in two different bands. Tune in for an engaging discussion on tech, business, and nerdery.------------------------Time Stamps [00:00:36] Six week splits vs two week sprints.[00:05:57] New method of loading Kits.[00:07:18] CSS-only web font Kits.[00:09:47] Project management methods.[00:12:41] Full benefits of 'cool down' time.[00:18:33] WebAssembly and Rust technology.[00:19:09] Programming language preferences.[00:22:14] Favorite icons and hobbies.[00:26:33] Guitar gear obsession.[00:31:38] Music and Band Promotion.--------------------------Show Notes The Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns and Lemon ProductionsBlister Soul (Jason's band) Stay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
36:13 10/5/23
Behind the Pixels: Designing Icons the Font Awesome Way
Dive into the minds of Font Awesome's Jory Raphael and Noah Jacobus as they discuss their unique approach to design process. Discover how they balance structure and creativity in the ever-evolving world of icon design.---------------TIMESTAMPS[00:01:23] Design process. [00:05:01] High level sketching. [00:07:45] Figma for interface design. [00:10:39] Designing dinosaur icons. [00:14:08] Messy creative process. [00:17:13] Creative process and productivity. [00:20:31] Brain science in music. [00:23:38] Creating a new schedule. [00:26:52] Creative process and pressure.--------------------NOTESThe Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns and Lemon ProductionsStay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
29:05 9/18/23
Nerd Show and Tell: Meet Kelsey Jackson, Designer and Front-End Developer
In our latest installment of the Nerd Show and Tell, we have the pleasure of chatting with Kelsey Jackson, Font Awesome's Designer and Front End Developer. Maybe you've noticed how slick the Font Awesome site looks these days? Yeah, Kelsey is responsible for quite a bit of that work. In this episode, Matt chats with Kelsey about his recent chunk of work where he helped create an internal design system, how he met Dave Gandy, won him over, started contracting, and eventually landed a job. (Kelsey called this process a “long con”, but we think it was probably a more virtuous process than that.) In addition to telling the story of how a high school art teacher convinced him to pursue a career in design and front-end development, Kelsey also discusses his passion for B-grade horror, experimenting in the kitchen at home, as well as his newfound interest in cocktail mixology. (According to Kelsey, middle-of-the-road rum is just as good as top-notch stuff when it comes to mixed drinks.)TIMESTAMPS: 0:00:16 Creating an Internal Design System and More0:02:43 Kelsey's Former Job at Waco Media as a Developer/Designer0:04:28 Exploring the Connection Between Drawing and Design0:07:29 Refining and Standardizing a Design System at Font Awesome0:11:57 Design System Consistency and Compliance0:13:27 Web Components, Machine Learning AI, and Content Creation0:15:34 Kelsey's Horror Movie Icon Wish-List 0:17:32 B-Grade Horror and Crappy Job Experiences0:22:07 Reflections on Working at a Car Wash and Assisting with Disaster Relief0:27:49 Conversation on Spirits, Sneakers, and Celebratory Bottles of Bourbon at the Bi-Annual Snuggles0:29:47  Cooking Steak and Mixing Tiki Drinks0:31:25 Conversation About Hulu Series "The Bear"0:33:29 Maddie Matheson's Foodie Comedy 0:35:18 Resources For Learning About Design Systems ---------------------Notes The Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns and Lemon ProductionsAtomic Design by Brad Frost Nielsen Norman GroupThe Bear Matty Matheson Killer Klowns from Outer Space Some of the places Kelsey goes for cooking inspiration Sam the Cooking GuyBabish Culinary UniverseJoshua WeissmanStay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
39:50 9/5/23
Unlocking Figma's Rainbow Magic: How We Transformed Our Icon Design Process
In this episode of Podcast Awesome, we sit down for a little chat with Noah Jacobus and Jory Raphael and discuss the benefits of using Figma for collaborative design and icon design. They highlight Figma's unique features, such as its Boolean operations and non-destructive vector editing, and compare it to other design software like Adobe Illustrator. We also touch on the recent acquisition of Figma by Adobe and the possibility of creating a Font Awesome plugin for Figma. ----------------TIMESTAMPS00:05:56 Tools don't always matter.00:12:12 Adobe owns Figma now.00:12:31 Adobe acquisitions can be good (and sometimes bad).00:24:22 Linking Font Awesome Pro accounts.00:27:09 Figma has rainbow magic.-------------------HIGHLIGHTS"So Figma has rainbow magic." (00:26:57-00:27:19)"Figma is a central place where we can both work in the same file at the same time. If I make a change, he sees it." (00:20:52-00:23:44)"Noah is entirely responsible for us moving to Figma." (00:00:00-00:03:29)"And the ability to easily test things in the context of digital products is kind of where it found its place for me." (00:03:23-00:06:24)"Being able to identify each of those, you know, every element of a stroke shape or path and make adjustments to it that way is pretty cool." (00:17:58-00:20:57)"Boolean operations are one of the biggest ones... it's kind of a unique way of treating stroked objects like their actual shapes at the same time... that is something that it can't do. So it's a nice more unique feature." (00:15:08-00:18:08)"I think that Figma is enough of a powerhouse kind of on its own that that's not going to happen with the employees there and the community, especially as such a huge force with a lot of momentum behind it that helps support the product and keeps it moving." (00:11:51-00:15:16)"There are just tons of things that are out there that if you run into an issue, someone else likely has run into it already and there's probably a plugin that exists to fix it or address it, which is awesome." (00:23:38-00:27:07)"But what started to become really appealing to me about Figma was, as Noah said, some of the, well, number one, the simplicity of collaboration, which is now super important because we have multiple icon designers at Fawn Awesome, but also some of their unique takes on doing things with vectors." (00:06:17-00:09:04)"We made a slight tactical mistake of announcing our new Sharp icons before they were completely done...I put the call out to some icon designers that I knew and admired to see if they could help us with the project of getting the sharp icons out the door...And he shared a Figma file...I took them and I looked at them and it was so fun to be able to manipulate them...I was able to trick Noah into spending some more time on the sharp icons...I had been starting work on a personal project for myself that was sharp icon based...And so I was already kind of very much ingrained in sharp, chunky icon world." (00:08:59-00:11:56)---------------------------------------NOTESThe Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns and Lemon Productions10 Reasons We Switched to Figma for Icon DesignStay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
27:06 8/22/23
Nerd Show and Tell: Meet Joey Hensen Font Awesome's Controller
In this episode, we chat with Joey Henson, the Controller at Font Awesome. Throughout his career, Joey has been working in the startup world, which has lasted most of his time, but he has found himself feeling the strain of burnout since the birth of his son. According to Joey, there can be a lot of pressure in the finance world. Everyone works long hours in an effort to justify their existence in a world that's pretty stressful. Font Awesome, on the other hand, is not like that at all. Joey has noticed a difference in the work culture between Font Awesome and other startups, as the environment at Font Awesome is more relaxed and supportive. This is largely due to the founders' approach to work-life balance and that management understands the effects of burnout and wants to prioritize the well-being of their employees. Having a good work-life balance has enabled Joey to have time for his family and to enjoy a reasonable work-life balance. Although Joey currently works at Font Awesome in a role that isn't tech-oriented, in his spare time, he enjoys learning SQL, Ruby programming, and Ruby on Rails in addition to his regular job at Font Awesome. Joey also shares how  he helped find a Harry Potter themed metaphor to help explain Font Awesome Kits, how he has lobbied for the development of a Harry Potter themed icon set, his obsession with nutrition, fitness, and his journey towards better health over the past few years.---------------------------TIMESTAMPS 0:03:50   Reflection on the Challenges of Working Long Hours0:05:27    Self-Development and Quality of Life at Font Awesome0:08:43  Tech, Finance, and Harry Potter Icon Pack at Font Awesome0:11:13   Exploring Harry Potter Lore to Explain the Functionality of Kits0:18:34   Dungeons & Dragons and Nutrition Habits0:20:20   Counting Macros for Optimal Health and Fitness-----------------------HIGHLIGHTS In a previous Snuggle, we were talking about metaphors or some way to describe how a kit works. And I seem to remember an allusion to Harry Potter lore would maybe be a good way to explain it. I think we discovered that there was confusion among folks between whether a kit is populated like it's a container that's full of something, or if it's empty and you add to it. And what we came around to say was more accurate is that a kit comes fully loaded with everything you might want to use.Yeah, it is. So Hermione, the beaded bag, it had an undetectable extension charm on it. They used that multiple times in the books and the movies. And it is it's kind of like the DND bag of holding where you can pull out a lot of stuff if you know what's in there. And it comes pre loaded. That works. So, like with Hermiones, the best analogy I could think of was they needed a ton of books and they needed clothes, and when they needed that, Hermione said, oh, let me grab that. Let me just get that out of this bag here. And that's kind of how the kits work, too. You're 100% right. I remember that conversation now where it's, hey, you don't have to worry about it. We've already got it handled for you, and we're going to make it super easy for you to get that out of there.-------------------------------NOTESA Beginner's Guide to Counting MacrosThe Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns at Lemon ProductionsStay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
23:34 8/8/23
Font Awesome Takes the Stage: A Recap of Config 2023
SummaryIn this episode of Podcast Awesome, Matt sits down with icon designers Jory Raphael and Noah Jacobus to discuss their experience at the Config conference. They share insights and highlights from the event, including their own talk on drawing icons in Figma. From keynote talks by industry leaders to the importance of collaboration and design-first approaches, this episode covers it all. Tune in to gain valuable insights into the world of design, tech, and business.  ----------------Timestamps[00:02:23] Figma's acquisition by Adobe.[00:06:06] Icelandic entrepreneur Halli Thorleifsson.[00:10:28] The awkwardness of speaking to an empty room.[00:14:14] The structured process for prepping for a conference talk.[00:17:25] Virtual presentations and audience feedback.[00:22:07] Variables in Figma.[00:24:18] Outro--------------------------------------------------------NotesThe Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns at Lemon Productions"Pixel Perfect" by Lesiakower"Legends" by Kim Lightyear "8-Bit-Space" by Purrsahfef"Retrorace" by WolfBeat"Victory Screen" by Lesiakower"Elixir of Life" by 23843807Interstitial music by Muzach Stay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
24:43 8/3/23
Icon Designers Jory Raphael and Noah Jacobus Discuss the History and Future of Font Awesome Icons
In this episode of Podcast Awesome, Matt Johnson interviews icon designers Jory Raphael and Noah Jacobus. They explore the history of Font Awesome and its development over the years. Jory shares how he came to hire Noah, someone he has admired and followed digitally for years (in the biz, it’s called a “designer crush.”) They also discuss their design process and talk a bit about the process of developing the Sharp family of styles. -----------------TIME STAMPS [00:00:39] Designer Crushes.00:05:57 Font Awesome acquires Symbolset.[00:08:19] Creating a video for Kickstarter.[00:11:20] Designing niche icons.00:12:10 Design icons to convey meaning.[00:13:40] The power of icons.[00:17:02] Icons as a continuation of art.00:18:12 Creativity thrives with constraints.[00:23:36] Font Awesome 6 redesign.[00:24:45] Icon design tips.[00:28:49] Developing artistic taste.00:30:29 Practice makes perfect.[00:33:00] Constantly improving design quality.----------------------------NOTESThe Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns at Lemon ProductionsStay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
32:54 7/25/23
Appreciating the Virtuous Cycle of Nerdery with Mike Wilkerson
On this episode of Podcast Awesome, Matt talks with lead programmer Mike Wilkerson from Font Awesome about his professional background and current role at the company. Wilkerson shares his passion for computer programming and tells the story of how he fell in love with coding while working at Walmart. He also discusses his work related to the design tool used by Font Awesome's designers and shares his fandom for the Marble Machine X music project. --------------------TIME STAMPS[00:00:36] Design tool used by designers. [00:07:24] SVG Circles Wobbling. [00:07:48] Perfecting wobbly circles. [00:12:12] Favorite Font Awesome icons. [00:16:57] Meditation practice. [00:19:30] Martin Molin's Marble Machine X. [00:23:40] Finding motivation in mundane work. [00:26:17] Appreciating good curves and circles.----------------------NOTESMarble Machine X The Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns at Lemon ProductionsStay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
29:15 7/11/23
When Failure Isn’t Failure: Hard Lessons in Business and Life with Dave Gandy
In this episode of Podcast Awesome, host Matt Johnson talks with Font Awesome founder Dave Gandy about the lessons learned from failing in business and life. They discuss Gandy's experience of flunking out of MIT twice and how it impacted his journey as an entrepreneur. They also delve into a story about the Font Awesome 5 Kickstarter campaign and the self-fulfilling prophecies that can shape our beliefs and reality. Gandy shares his insights into the startup world and the power of believing a lie long enough that it becomes the truth.-------------------TIME STAMPS 00:04:54 Failure is not final.00:07:30 Embrace reality and grow.00:10:06 Failure is an opportunity for growth.00:18:56 Nothing is ever truly failure.00:23:25 Find trustworthy partners for success.00:27:05 Trust your teammates.00:29:09 Try hard things and learn.------------------NOTESY CombinatorMITMake Some People Want: A Behind the Scenes Look at Font Awesome's 2017 KickstarterThe Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns at Lemon ProductionsStay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
30:32 6/27/23
Character First: Why Font Awesome Doesn’t Hire “Rock Stars” and “A Players”
In this podcast, Font Awesome founders, Dave Gandy and Travis Chase, discuss how hiring the right people to the team is the first and best approach to building a strong company culture. The 37 Signals blog, and their books gave Dave and Travis inspiration on how to do business and software differently. Dave and Travis had both built software together and had proof that they knew how to create user-centric product design, so why not also build a people-first company, too? But they’d have to rethink standard hiring practices. Often, nearsighted companies hire so-called “A Player”, or “Rock Star” employees. Unfortunately, folks with this reputation are often egotistical jerks that cause more problems in companies than solutions. Why hire a new employee for their skills first, to only fire them for issues of character later? Dave believes this is backward. A key ingredient to creating a different sort of company is to hire folks who are first of all humble, possess the necessary skills for the job, and have a love for learning. The rest can be taught.  —---------------------------------Timestamps0:00:13Creating a Unique Work Culture0:02:26Exploring the Possibilities of Entrepreneurship0:04:07Adding Humanity to Business: How BaseCamp Found Success Through Dignity0:05:32Conversation on Hiring Practices and Bringing Dignity Through Software0:07:06The Impact of the Rock Star Mentality in the Workplace0:08:26Evaluating Work Product and Hiring for Character Fit0:12:05Hiring for Character and Personality0:14:19Strategies for Building Trust and Resolving Disagreements in a Collaborative Environment0:15:53Humility in the Workplace—------------------------HighlightsEverybody that we hire, we want to spend some time working on a project with you. And we get the opportunity cost there, right? We get that when people are really, really in demand professionally, they may not want to take the time to spend 20 hours on a side project to see if it's a good fit. We get that this is time where we learn something and they learn something in a much clearer way is these the people I want to live my life with for a while? I want to wake up and go and to hang out with these people and build stuff with these people? The very people who are willing to have that question answered because they care about it are the right people we want to be working with anyway. We're willing to worry about that risk.Most companies will hire for skill or competency first and then fire for issues of character, and that it's completely backwards. Right? This goes back to just running a company with common sense. In a lot of ways, that is how people tend to get fired. They did something, so we fired them. But what if you were hired for the same thing? What if we hired adults and we treated them that way? Because the truth is, so many of what other companies define as rock stars are terrible employees. But so often a lot of the employees that other companies have deemed B and C players are actually just A players currently under bad management. ---------------------Notes37 SignalsCompany Culture: Why We Hire for Humility (Over Skill)The Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns and Lemon Productions Stay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
18:28 6/13/23
Nerd Show and Tell: Meet Trevor Chase
In this episode of Podcast Awesome, host Matt Johnson interviews Trevor Chase, the technical support member of Font Awesome. Trevor opens up about his career change from a middle school principal to tech support, and also talks about his background in business administration and education. Listeners can also expect to hear about the most common tech support questions Trevor receives and the coffee roasting obsession that started by roasting coffee beans in a popcorn popper. ----------------------Time Stamps[00:01:03] Career change from education.[00:03:09] Learn new skills to pivot into new careers.[00:06:56] Licensing and Technical Support.[00:10:53] Coffee Roasting and favorite Icons.[00:13:33] Ethiopian Coffee Ceremony.[00:18:40] Working remotely and reconnecting with co-workers.-----------Show NotesThe Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns at Lemon ProductionsMill City Roasters on YouTubeStay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
20:24 6/1/23
The Snuggle Is Real: How Font Awesome and Shoelace Are on a Mission to Make Dev Work Easier
Our guest in this episode is Cory LaViska, the founder of Shoelace — a component library that makes it easy to build performant, mobile-friendly websites using CSS grids and custom elements APIs. Matt, Travis, and Cory discuss the partnership between Shoelace and Font Awesome, as well as their own experiences using different design systems and web components. Cory also touches on the benefits and challenges of modern web standards and the importance of keeping up with industry trends. Cory shares his favorite culinary icon, and busts Travis' chops for not having a Shoelace icon (yet.) ------------------------TIME STAMPS00:05:04 Customize CSS with Shoelace.00:08:10 Reusable components for brand consistency.00:11:50 Web Components: Easier Development.00:17:06 Web components enable great tooling.00:25:46 Use modern technologies.00:30:17 Provide great software for free.00:31:25 Open source technology is powerful.00:36:04 Learn web programming with PHP.--------------------NOTES Shoelace.styleThe Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns at Lemon ProductionsStay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
39:19 5/16/23
Nerd Show and Tell: Meet Sr. Developer Ed Emanuel
In this edition of the Nerd Show and Tell we chat with Ed Emanuel, Senior Developer at Font Awesome. Ed started programming at the age of 12 years old with a TSR 80, and hasn't looked back since. As part of Ed's  ongoing learning, he has been working on a new text-based game based on the Oregon Trail known as Space Awesome since last year. As Ed created Space Awesome, he also used it to learn Vue.JS, and the graphics are Font Awesome space-themed icons. The discussion also includes a look at the recent work that Ed and Mike Wilkerson have been doing on the Icon Wizard project. He also shares his love of 3D printers and Dungeons and Dragons.------------------TIMESTAMPS0:02:27 Working with Dave and Travis at Font Awesome0:04:07 Creating Custom Icons with Font Awesome Pro0:06:34 3D Printing and D&D Miniatures0:10:31 Exploring Icon Themes and Favorite Font Awesome Icons0:12:11 Space Awesome  Game Launch0:14:02 Text-Based Games and Working at Blockbuster Video Warehouse0:16:20 Discussing Ed's Interest in Dungeons and Dragons 0:19:21 Conversation on the Popularity of Dungeons & Dragons and Role-Playing Games0:21:51 The Role of a Dungeon Master in Dungeons and Dragons--------------------HighlightsWell, I think I can thank my brother in law for that one as well. When he started dating my sister, my older sister, they played DND and kind of introduced me and my other siblings to it. So I played Advanced Dungeons and Dragons back in the late eighty s a little bit. And then we didn't have any of the books. So we kind of homebrewed our own game for a while, just like everyone else. We kind of stepped away from it for a while and then, let's see, it's been five or six years ago actually.It went well. We had lots of traffic the first couple of weeks. Not as much since then, but when I designed the game, I wanted to kind of respect people's time. It does not require a huge investment in your time. You can sit down and play it for five to ten minutes, and while there are a lot of secrets to discover and things that you probably won't encounter your first time through. There's no timers. There's no anything that requires that you come back and play it every day.Well, I think we have a 20 sided dice that belongs in there. We have some swords, axe, the wizards hats. We have a bunch of icons, the cloak, the skull, stuff like that. I think there's probably definitely a few icons we could add along those lines. Some more DnD themed things. Oh, we have a dragon icon already, but I think there's some other monsters that would be cool to add some kind of slime or gelatinous cube or a beholder, but I suppose we couldn't call it a beholder.---------------------NOTESThe Icon WizardSpaceawesome.ioThe Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns at Lemon ProductionsStay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
24:41 5/2/23
How Font Awesome Broke Kickstarter Records with a Hilarious Video
In this podcast, the Font Awesome team discuss the success of their 2017 Kickstarter for Font Awesome version 5. This was the most funded and most backed tech Kickstarter of all time. The team reflects on what contributed to the project's success, including the video, and the decision to add a paid, Pro version to Font Awesome. The team also discusses how they were invited to Y Combinator, a Silicon Valley tech accelerator, after making the decision to give Font Awesome a go as a viable business. To get their paid version of Font Awesome off the ground, Dave and the team decided to launch a crowdfunding campaign. They learned from the failure of their previous campaign for Font Awesome Black Tie. For the version 5 video, they'd need to hire professionals to create an engaging video to tell their story. After some research, they decided to work with Knox Avenue, who did a fantastic job. ---------------------------------TIMESTAMPS 0:00:09   Reflecting on the Success of Font Awesome's 2017 Kickstarter0:02:14   Was Y Combinator Worth It? 0:05:32   Lessons Learned from the Font Awesome Crowdfunding Campaign0:07:30   The Journey to Finding a Professional Video Production Company 0:09:03   The Risky Decision to Create the Font Awesome Kickstarter Video0:13:10   The 12-Hour Filming Session for Kickstarter Video0:14:58   The Font Awesome 5 Kickstarter: A Story of Success-------------------------------HIGHLIGHTS We have no idea how this is going to hit. But we think this is hysterical. We thought it was funny, so we launched the video. We did a few things right with it. We did a lot of things right. And we still got an article out there somewhere about all of the we think are good ways to run a Kickstarter. And it's a few years old, but most of it's going to be evergreen with that. And we set a goal for ourselves for $30,000.If Brian hasn't shared his nerd about baking, that would yeah, we should do that. The parallel we come up with [for the video] is a bakery. Because a bakery is we think of Font Awesome as this intersection of art and technology. We think of it as how do we make these Awesome assets. You get your icons. How do you make these real? How do you get these where they need to be in the way people want to use them so that everything can be better? As a company, we like humor. This is actually a core piece of who the company has become. Is that we value this so much, and so we're like, okay, so humor seems a clear way that we can try to make this more interesting. But also, what if we have nothing overtly digital in this? What if we tell this in the real world? What if we tell the story of Font Awesome 5, what we want to build? What if we tell this story in the real world? And so what's the biggest parallel, right? ---------------------------------NOTESFont Awesome 5 Kickstarter Video How Font Awesome became the most funded software project on Kickstarter  — and what we can learn from it The Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns at Lemon ProductionsStay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
20:46 4/18/23
Nerd Show and Tell: Meet Alex Poiry
In this episode of Nerd Show and Tell, host Matt Johnson interviews Alex Poiry, Head of Security at Font Awesome. After Alex gives a rundown of what he does in his job as Head of Security, things get really fun. Alex explains how he found his way to tech after getting degrees in history and German, and explains his love of early 2000s memes. He also talks about his interest in historic European martial arts and how it ties into virtual reality. Alex also mentions how he gave himself tennis elbow using a longsword. As a fun aside, Alex explains the origin of his nickname “ Alex Yellow Dart Poiry”, which comes from a classic web video series called Homestar Runner. ---------------------TIMESTAMPS0:00:08 Interview with Alex Poiry, Font Awesome's Head of Security0:03:44 Alex's Professional Background and Connection to Font Awesome0:07:56 Security Considerations for Font Awesome0:12:30 Conversation on Technology and Data Privacy0:14:42 Exploring the Benefits of Analogous Circuit Systems and Metaphors for Learning Technology0:18:42 Conversation About the Klingon Language, Lord of the Rings, and Internet Memes0:21:30 Reflections on early 2000s Memes and Unusual Jobs0:23:26 Unusual Computer Repairs as a Geek Squad Tech0:25:20 Conversation on Computer Repair and Virtual Reality0:27:25 Exploring the Possibilities of Virtual Reality and Historic European Martial Arts0:33:22 Exploring the Impact of Technology on Storytelling0:39:15Discussion on the Power of Storytelling in PR and Marketing0:41:24 Conversation About Redemptive Storytelling----------------------HIGHLIGHTS At what point in time when you get to a certain age, how do you tell if it's you getting old or if some things actually are worse? Because there's a definitive period in American cinema that's not as good as some of the other periods.  There's a fantastic storytelling section of American cinema that starts in the 1970s and kind of goes into the it goes into the then you start to hit that era of the blockbuster.The MCU is great. It's fun, and it's nice to see all this expansive stuff. But I wonder, are we going to look down the line in, like, 30 or 40 years and we're going to be like, these movies were fantastic storytelling, or if it's just going to just kind of be, like, fluffy. Almost all of the effects in The Wizard of Oz are practical effects. I don't even know if there's a special effect in the whole thing. And the beauty part is you can put The Wizard of Oz on for a kid, for an adult. It's a good story.It wouldn't be too much of a stretch to basically take those devices, put a solid stick between them, and basically be like, all right, now, what is your form like when it comes to historic European martial arts? And then you could do like a super hot thing where you just put a character up in front of it and just like whack him with a sword and he breaks and falls down or he blocks and you can try that stuff. So then you can actually work on your form without getting sword elbow.-------------NOTESSpintronicsThe Crazy Nastyass Honey Badger (original narration by Randall) G.I. Joe PSAs The Font Awesome theme song was composed by Ronnie MartinAudio mastering by Chris Enns at Lemon ProductionsStay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
43:37 4/4/23
What's New in Font Awesome 6?
Icon Designer Jory Raphael Discusses Design Highlights of Font Awesome 6 on Podcast AwesomeSummaryHost Matt Johnson and Font Awesome’s Co-founder Travis Chase chat with icon designer Jory Raphael about the highlights of Font Awesome 6, and what differentiates V6 from V5. As Jory explains, when he joined Font Awesome, they had the opportunity to refine the icon set holistically and set some rules to make it better than ever. Jory also discusses how moving to Figma helped refine the Sharp icon family and recounts his experience collaborating with the United Nations on Humanitarian Icons. Finally, Jory and Travis discuss their favorite icons from the 6.1 release. ------------------------Timestamps0:00:10Exploring the Highlights of Font Awesome 6 with Senior Icon Designer Jory Rafael0:02:30Rebuilding Icons for Font Awesome 60:04:01Exploring Different Icon Styles for Branding and Design Projects0:06:30Exploring Icon Design 0:13:39Introducing Noah Jacobus, Font Awesome's New Icon Designer0:14:36Jory and Travis Discuss Their Favorite Icons------------------LinksFont Awesome 6 Is Live! See the New Icons, Styles and Upgrade Without the Hassle10 Reasons We Switched to Figma For Icon DesignFont Awesome and OCHA Partner to Create Humanitarian IconsNerd Show and Tell: Meet Noah Jacobus, Icon Designer ExtraordinaireRonnie Martin composed the Font Awesome theme songZach Malm composed the 8-bit styled music segues Audio mastering by Chris Enns and Lemon Productions ----------------Highlights "...Over the years, like, I have followed a lot of people who are fantastic artists and are sharing their icons. And Noah Jacobus is one of those icon designers who his work just constantly has made me jealous. He posts things that I wish I had designed and his skill and detail and creativity I find amazing. We actually got him to work a little bit on some contract work for us a little while ago as kind of sneakily, get him excited working with us at Font. Awesome. He finally popped the question and he is here working with us. And I'm so excited because I'm excited because he's a better icon designer than I am. And so that means that our stuff is just going to get better, and it also means that I can focus on some other things as well at Font awesome.""... Part of the core of Font Awesome is to have fun with things. It makes it so much more interesting to include an icon like the Poo storm icon. That was a joke. I was designing a set of weather icons and a cloud icon has some very similar curves to an icon of Poop. And I was designing a cloud icon and it had a little lightning bolt. And so I just took the Poop icon and added a lightning bolt and it's resonated with a lot more people than I thought it would.""One of my favorites [icons] is the coffee being just a big coffee nerd. Just love putting that everywhere. I love all some of the little references to nerd things that we like, like our business time icons or our Poo Storm dumpster fire icons. I think those are quite fun. And even recently we had complete breakdown and investigation into the mullet icon."Stay up to date on all the Font Awesomeness!
16:55 3/13/23