Doing More with Less is where Design is really Needed

Check out this very well written article by Dan Harding President of Whipsaw on “Doing More With Less: Using the Down Economy as a Design Brief”.
Here is a snippet:

Contrary to logic, a good economy compromises quality more than a bad one. In good times corporations seek to supply rising demand as fast as possible for non-discriminating consumers that have more disposable income. Flush with R&D budgets, companies fund programs that keep the current best sellers buoyed by tweaking the brand message with advertising, and designing new products as fast as they can.
[snip…]
It’s harder to design simple inexpensive products than complex expensive ones. One needs to focus more on the essential user needs and less on the endless feature possibilities or extraneous embellishments. It requires more purity, so that no matter how much they take away from it, it’s more likely to survive intact through its development. Simple inexpensive products are also better for the environment. They consume less material, have fewer parts, and use less energy to manufacture and ship.

There is a flip-side to every story. It is about adjusting our point of view and how we want to approach the problem at hand. Designers are capable of using their creative talents to solve problems, but we tend to forget that this also means creatively working with and within the constraints we have. So the next time we get to situations where designs may be compromised (materials vs. cost etc.) think of the big picture and focus on what the product should really be about and if making it in brush metal is that important to the equation.
Never give up!
Check out the full write up at : Fast Company

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