Who are you?
My name is Nam-ho Park (???). I am a husband and a father of 2 beautiful kids.
I studied architecture for 7 years and practiced for 2.
I left architecture to work for a Internet startup called Cybersites Inc. in New York’s Silicon Alley, building online communities coding HTML/PHP/SQL and there I started my path down information architecture.
I then worked for Forum One Communications for the a while and by the time I left, I was the Managing Director of User Experience & Design Services.
I quit in August 2007, to move to Korea to be closer to family and explore new opportunities. I now live and work in Korea. I first worked for a new media agency called VINYL, where I was the Director of User Experience Strategy.
As of September 2008, my career pendulum has swung fatefully back to architecture, and I find myself working for JINA Architects where, as Associate Partner, I am managing an urban design project in Hanoi, Vietnam.
Life is indeed strange and unpredictable.
You can contact me at: namho dot park at google’s email service dot com.
What is this site about?
This site is about stuff that interests me, which include and not limited to: architecture, information architecture, design, internet culture, user experience, emerging technologies, social entrepreneurship, changing the world and surviving in technology-overloaded Korea.
Why is it called Strange Systems?
Back in architecture grad school I and a couple of friends were interested in chaos theory. Although its theories were way over our heads we were drawn to fractals and strange attractors. So when we started our loose freelance collaboration after we graduated, we called our firm Strange Systems. It was just like finding a cool name for a band. And like most bands formed without talent, it didn’t last long but I took the band name and started a solo career.
Is this your first blog?
No, I have had 2 previous blogs:
Strange Systems v.1: a site that I have been contributing to on and off since 2001. Mostly about information architecure (IA). The most popular posts on this blog were Using Wireframes and Using Wireframes (Revised). If you search for ‘Wireframes’ on Google, it’s currently ranked somewhere between #3 – #5.
Forum One: User Experience & Design blog: Forum One User Experience & Design team’s blog which we started in 2006. I blogged about IA, usability, trends among other things.
For those who are interested, my first blog was on Greymatter back in 2001. Since then, I’ve used Serendipity, Squarespace, but recently settled for WordPress because of its flexibility (I code HTML/CSS and some PHP/MySQL) and cost (=free).
I designed the WP template with a healthy helping of inspiration from other website designs across the web.
I recently (June 2009) started another blog, UXforGood.org that covers my interests in UX and social innovation.
What else can you say about yourself?
Helvetica is my favorite font.
I’ve been living in Seoul as of mid-August 2007, but I’ve lived in New York City (7 years), Metro Washington DC (6 years), London (9 years) and Morroco (for 1 year when I was one – don’t remember anything). Time-wise I have lived in Seoul the longest (total of 13 years and counting). Also lived for a couple months in Bangkok and Paris. If you find that hard to follow, here is a map of where I have lived.
To me home is where my family is.
I know how to solve a Rubik’s cube (only because I bought the solution book and memorized it when I was 15 when my brain functioned better).
I have subscriptions to: Wired, I.D. (International Design, not that British fashion mag), Fast Company and Metropolis.
I don’t like carrying things in my pockets.
My favorite building in NYC is Grand Central Terminal, in London it is Lloyd’s of London, in Paris it is a toss between Villa La Roche and the Pompidou Center, in Washington DC it is the National Gallery of Art’s East Building and in Seoul it is Leeum Museum.
My first computer was a Sharp MZ-80K and my second was the fabulous BBC Micro. I have owned 9 Apple Macs so far (I shelled out my own money for 3) beginning with Classic II with 10MB of RAM. I currently use PowerBook G4. I am thinking of getting a Macbook. I currently use a MacBook Pro, and waiting for iPhone to land in Korea.
Jesus is my Lord and Savior.
(Updated: July 19, 2009)