Monthly Archives: September 2009

Designers are trained to be courageous about the future—and making the future happen

“Designers are optimistic people who are trained to be courageous about the future—and making the future happen. They aren’t always aware of the intricacies of operations and the impacts of the solutions they propose, just like entrepreneurs, but they aren’t afraid of confronting a blank piece of paper (or screen or board) and getting to work making something new.” - Nathan Shedroff

“Designers are optimistic people who are trained to be courageous about the future—and making the future happen. They aren’t always aware of the intricacies of operations and the impacts of the solutions they propose, just like entrepreneurs, but they aren’t afraid of confronting a blank piece of paper (or screen or board) and getting to work making something new.” – Nathan Shedroff

This quote is from Kate Rutter’s 2008 interview with Nathan on the subject of the role of design in business.

Users will pay a premium for a better product that does a better job serving their needs

“Users will pay a premium for a better, higher quality product that does a better job serving their needs, for instance... A beautiful, easy to use object can often command a higher price, even if the manufacturing cost is the same.” - Dan Saffer

“Users will pay a premium for a better, higher quality product that does a better job serving their needs, for instance… A beautiful, easy to use object can often command a higher price, even if the manufacturing cost is the same.” – Dan Saffer

Read more from Dan in his article “Why Products Suck #3: Organizational Needs Trump User Needs.”

Focus on the nuances and details of the design craft itself

“Accept—quietly and implicitly—that your work will affect millions. Focus on the nuances and details of the craft itself, and on your capacity to engage in a conversation with your work. Through this will come humble and beautiful design solutions that will live on, affect culture, and change behavior. And through this will come a sense of subdued pleasure in your creative work.” - Jon Kolko

“Accept—quietly and implicitly—that your work will affect millions. Focus on the nuances and details of the craft itself, and on your capacity to engage in a conversation with your work. Through this will come humble and beautiful design solutions that will live on, affect culture, and change behavior. And through this will come a sense of subdued pleasure in your creative work.” – Jon Kolko

Read more from Jon in his interactions magazine article “On Hopelessness and Hope.” In this article Jon argues that successful design may come from those who focus more on designing for deep impact, rather than on broad high level strategic solutions.

A product is more than the product. It is a cohesive, integrated set of experiences.

“No product is an island. A product is more than the product. It is a cohesive, integrated set of experiences. Think through all of the stages of a product or service - from initial intentions through final reflections, from first usage to help, service, and maintenance. Make them all work together seamlessly. That’s systems thinking.” - Don Norman

“No product is an island. A product is more than the product. It is a cohesive, integrated set of experiences. Think through all of the stages of a product or service – from initial intentions through final reflections, from first usage to help, service, and maintenance. Make them all work together seamlessly. That’s systems thinking.” – Don Norman

Read more from Don in his article “Systems Thinking: A Product Is More Than the Product”.

Designers are gifted with a certain perspective of the world that can cause much frustration and wonderment

“Designers are gifted with a certain perspective of the world that can cause much frustration and wonderment. The average person doesn’t have the filters in place to see when they have been ignored by the product they are using. Occasionally, people can tell when something wasn’t designed, but they normally deal with the damages done physically, mentally, and socially. In an attempt to stop the pain, designers create interactions that look to discourage undesirable behavior and promote desirable behavior.” - Brad Nunnally

“Designers are gifted with a certain perspective of the world that can cause much frustration and wonderment. The average person doesn’t have the filters in place to see when they have been ignored by the product they are using. Occasionally, people can tell when something wasn’t designed, but they normally deal with the damages done physically, mentally, and socially. In an attempt to stop the pain, designers create interactions that look to discourage undesirable behavior and promote desirable behavior.” – Brad Nunnally

Read more from Brad in his article “Are We The Puppet Masters?”

How can we help people begin making a change in behavior?

“Understanding is important, but it’s only the beginning. It’s got to lead to a change in behavior. The question interaction designers need to ask ourselves, then, is this: how can our work help people to not only understand the change needed, but also to begin making it?” - Tom Igoe

“Understanding is important, but it’s only the beginning. It’s got to lead to a change in behavior. The question interaction designers need to ask ourselves, then, is this: how can our work help people to not only understand the change needed, but also to begin making it?” – Tom Igoe

Tom’s quote is from a panel he and Robert Fabricant were on that discussed sustainable interaction design. Robert cited this quote in his IxDA Interaction 9 video “Behavior is our Medium.”

Thanks to Dave Malouf for pointing me to this video!