Unit 2 Design

My new theme for research is Design.
The more things change, the more they are the same.
At home we have one interesting book. When I noticed this on our shelf I remembered, that V. bought it so long ago and we forgot about it. The name of this book is The design of everyday things by Don Norman. Do you know about this great man?
Donald Arthur “Don” Norman is the director of The Design Lab at University of California, San Diego.  He is widely regarded for his expertise in the fields of design, usability engineering and cognitive science. 
It happened at the right moment, I think. I opened the book and started to read the entry. It was interesting. And I copied out some quotes from there .
Thoughtful designers have worked to make our lives easier and smother. We are all designers in the sense that all of us deliberately design our lives, our rooms, and the way we do things. We can also design workarounds, ways of overcoming the flaws of existing devises. Design making people more sensitive to the problems of lives and to the needs of people. Now design is human-centered.
Some time ago the design focused upon making products understandable and usable. Now the total experience of a product covers much more than its usability: aesthetics, pleasure, and fun play critically important roles. Successful product has to appeal to customers, and the criteria they use to determine what to purchase may have surprisingly little overlap with the aspects that are important during usage.
The best product do not always succeed.
Brilliant new technologies might take decade to become accepted.
To understand product, it’s not enough to understand design or technology: it is critical to understand business.
After all, who remembers the companies of twenty-five years ago? And the design principles based on psychology, on the nature of human cognition, emotion, action, and interaction with the world, will remain unchanged. With the passage of time, the psychology of people says the same but the tools and objects in the world change. Cultures change. Technologies change. The principles o design still hold, but the way they get applied needs to be modified to account for new activities, new technologies, new methods of communications and interaction.

Design is the creation of a plan or convention for the construction of an object or a system (as in architectural blueprints, engineering drawings, business processes, circuit diagrams and sewing patterns). Design has different connotations in different fields.
In some cases, the direct construction of an object, as in engineering, management, coding, art is also considered to be design. Designing often necessitates considering the aesthetic, functional, economic and sociopolitical dimensions of both the design object and design process. Objects of design may be clothing, interfaces, graphical works,business processes, and even methods of designing.

Thus “design” may be a substantive referring to a categorical abstraction of a created thing or things (the design of something), or a verb for the process of creation, as is made clear by grammatical context.

Design process used in architecture, town planning, engineeringinterior design, etc, the goal of which is to appeal not only to the thoughts and feelings of the conscious mind but also the visual imagery of the unconscious, while also aiming for sustainability. Wiki

Today, the term design is widely associated with the applied arts and teachings during the 20th century. The boundaries between art and design are blurred, largely due to a range of applications both for the term ‘art’ and the term ‘design’.
  • Applied arts has been used as an umbrella term to define fields of industrial design, graphic design, fashion design, etc.
  • The term ‘decorative arts’ is a traditional term used in historical discourses to describe craft objects, and also sits within the umbrella of applied arts.
  • In graphic arts (2D image making that ranges from photography to illustration), the distinction is often made between fine art and commercial art, based on the context within which the work is produced and how it is traded. 

When the design is just appeared it became a part of our every day life and we started to have expectations, that all around of us is needed some kind of beauty and usability. We want to have a big screen on our phones, a lot of functions inside and the best quality product for minimum money. The inventions of last two or four centuries changed our world. But the inventions of last decades changed our world even more. And we were changed with them too.


We have a communications devices, computers, we send satellite and work stations into space. People became more clever, I think. They want to have more and they understand that can do more. Work harder. Do you know this motto?

Engineers and designers now are in the same boat… They are looking for new technologies and then they try to create the look of them to show the world. Why they do that? Because we are waiting this from them and they know, it’s the reason for the acceptance…

Every day I use a lot of devices: phone, laptop, blue-tooth headphones, refrigerator, stove, public transport, metro and toilet too (good device, isn’t it) – a lot of different things for every sphere of our life. 

To tell the truth I don’t think about their design, because it’s a thing I use every day. Design is a funny word. Mention it in a conversation and it adds value without adding a precise meaning. If you hear “that’s the great design” do you know exactly what your interlocutor meant by that? Aesthetics? Function? Both? Really funny.

But, in spite of it, I think you understood that I wanted to say.

 Design is a dangerously obscure term. Especially in the Age of Design in which “good design” mark might be a highway to success for any product and “bad design” may doom anything. Diving deep into the nature of design can give us some kind of clear view for the matter, so let’s get back to pure words and try to define design in a general way.

1. Etymology form Dictionary
Design (verb): 1540s, from Latin designare “mark out, devise, choose, designate, appoint,” from de- “out” + signare “to mark,” from signum “a mark, sign”. Originally in English with the meaning now attached to designate; many modern uses of design are metaphoric extensions.
Design (noun): 1580s, from Middle French desseign “purpose, project, design,” from Italian disegno, from disegnare “to mark out,” from Latin designare “to mark out” (see design (v.)).
2. From the other Dictionary
DESIGN: (noun) a specification of an object, manifested by some agent, intended to accomplish goals, in a particular environment, using a set of primitive components, satisfying a set of requirements, subject to some constraints.
The common notion in all the definitions seems to be regarding to design as to purposeful action, a plan of solving particular problem. Design, regardless of the particular pragmatic discipline, is a deliberate set of actions that are meant to provide value for the receiver of a “designed thing”.
The term Design will gain a deeper meaning by thinking about it like this. Design is more then aesthetics. Design is more than just planing function. It’s about giving meaning to something. It’s about experience. That’s why the concept of the design transcends single disciplines and can be applied to web, mobile, software, fashion, industrial, interiors etc. 

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