This partner in Make Architects is was an early convert to Twitter and LinkedIn and is branching out into blogging and analytics
What is your favourite website?
Google Analytics - My parents have some holiday cottages in Cornwall (www.carclaze.co.uk) and I monitor their website for them. I’m blown away by the breadth and depth of information that Analytics collects about visits to the site. You can analyse by location, time of day, hardware, software, how people move through the site - by day or week and even make annual comparisons. It’s endless and best of all free - just brilliant! Try explaining that idea to someone 10 years ago.
What is your worst digital habit?
Starting to surf the web for one thing only to find myself faffing around with something completely different. I’d love some virtual ‘buffers’ to stop me wandering.
iPhone/Blackberry/Android. Which side are you on?
iPhone hands down! My four-year-old daughter uses my wife’s like it’s an extension of her hand. Meanwhile I’m stuck with my clunky Blackberry, but only for a few more months.
Are you into social networking?
I’ve been on Linkedin for over five years now. It’s brilliant for finding common ground with your work colleagues or locating old contacts. Last year I started tweeting and I’m constantly amazed when meeting people how many tweets they remember. I’m often caught out and think ‘how the hell did they know what I was doing last week?’. Strangely, it’s the things that you think are a bit dull which people seem to like. Recently I also started my own blog: www.justinnichollsarchitect.com. I’ve noticed it’s a good way of slowing me down and allowing me to think more carefully about everything
Are you on Twitter? If so who do you recommend to follow?
@JohnPrescott - he tells it as it is; @boriswatch - if I’m having a crummy commute; @unconsumption for real sustainable living tips; and of course, @makearchitects. I recommend you follow your work mates. When I’m out and about it’s a great way of knowing how someone’s day’s going - a good example is @makeken. Apparently that’s what Twitter was actually invented for. Try me @justinpnicholls.
What is your favourite app?
GoodReader - allows you to squash a whole portfolio into an iPad. It’s great for lectures, formal client presentations or just showing some work over a quiet coffee. It’s never let me down. After that you can sit on the train and comment on a detailed report straight onto the screen. I bet the guys at Adobe Acrobat are kicking themselves about this one.
What is your preferred means of communication?
Face to face meetings for the real important stuff, email for the day to day churn. I hate the phone - it’s disruptive and neither personable nor a formal record. Video phone could be interesting going forward. I often have a beer or two with a friend of mine in Atlanta, courtesy of Skype. Oh and voicemail should be banned.
What did you last buy online?
A pair of bright orange Falke slipper socks - yep get me! It gets better though. I now get weekly email bulletins from UK Tights whom I apparently bought the socks from.
PC or Mac?
Google - your digital world is fully indexed, in the cloud, fast and fresh looking. Sadly they don’t have the slick hardware to match, yet! In the meantime I’m running clunky old Windows 7 on a beautiful silver MacBook Air. It’s like having a fine crystal wine glass and filling it with water from the River Thames.
Most played tunes from iTunes/Spotify?
Gabriel and Dresden’s self-titled album - fast and beautifully produced. If you’re not accustomed to your music at 180bpm, then perhaps start with ‘Read my Mind’ by The Killers (Gabriel and Dresden remix). To slow down it has to be ‘One Perfect Sunrise’ by Orbital.
Justin Nicholls is a partner in Make Architects.