Hi, I’m Mike Davidson.
On this site, you’ll find some articles I’ve written, some great things I’ve read recently, and a little about me.
I moved back to my favorite city, Seattle, in 2016 after 3+ years as Vice President of Design at Twitter in San Francisco. While at Twitter, I built a 100-person design and research team in charge of every aspect of Twitter’s user experience and branding. From web, to mobile web, to native apps, to business tools, the work of the team touches over 300 million unique users a month and over 1 billion total audience members. When I left, our team was 50% men and 50% women, a balance we take a lot of pride in.
Before Twitter, I founded and ran Newsvine in 2005, one of the earliest and most popular citizen journalism startups. We were acquired by NBCNews in 2007 where I continued on as Vice President for five years. Before Newsvine, I worked at ESPN/Disney and was responsible, among other things, for the first ever mainstream media site redesign anchored around web standards. And finally, before that, I did a bunch of print and web design work in Seattle, including sports posters like this, this, and this.
I was an unfocused student in school, but I did manage to get a business degree and learn a few things while at the University of Washington and Oxford.
Aside from Newsvine, the invention I’m most proud of is sIFR. It enabled thousands of people and companies around the world to use high quality typefaces on their websites before more modern methods like TypeKit/webfonts were invented many years later.
In terms of what I’m doing now, I’m trying to take a bit of time off. I haven’t taken more than two consecutive weeks off since college, and I’d like to relax, travel, cook and learn some other skills for awhile. I’m always open to having conversations with interesting people though.
People who know me know that I’m pretty passionate about recommending products that I love. Here are some things I recommend:
- Everyone deserves a fantastic shower every morning, and the key to that fantastic shower is a great showerhead. That showerhead is the Kohler Flipside. Take out the plastic flow restrictor and you’ll thank me in the morning.
- If you love lemonade, give Fentiman’s Sparkling Rose Lemonade a try.
- My favorite travel destination is the Galápagos Islands, and I can’t recommend it more highly.
- If you’re coming to Seattle, I recommend hitting these restaurants: Paseo for the pork loin sandwich, The Pink Door for the lasagna, Skillet for comfort food, Momiji for sushi, Oaxaca for the molé tacos, Cantinetta Wallingford for Italian food, and El Gaucho for steak.
- Seattle is also home to some of the best bread in the world. I recommend Tall Grass, Macrina, Wild Wheat, and Grand Central… in that order.
- On the advice of a friend, I cut shoelaces out of my life about 10 years ago and have never looked back. I recommend you do the same. Slip-ons only. You won’t regret it.