We can all use less power, but it’s going to take some new behaviors. Design can be a powerful tool in nudging us to change how we act, and if we apply design solutions to using less power, it might be a little easier.
Whether they’re dealing in cars or cookies or computers, companies typically struggle with how to effectively and reliably create innovative products and services. Often, they discover that the greatest challenges aren’t in coming up with big ideas but in the organizational and management issues that these new ideas present.
As cinema goes, watching designers talk about their work is boring enough. But watching designers talk about how they think? Suffice it to say, it’s no Die Hard. Nevertheless, a handful of filmmakers wants to mount a documentary on precisely that -- design thinking -- and they hope to raise $15,000 through Kickstarter to support their work.
[This is the fourth post in a series by Smart Design. Click here to read the introduction. -- Ed.]
Last week, I wrote about how to evoke personality through design to help satisfy the contradictory, natural preferences in each gender. Another method to designing transparently is to understand a woman’s unique priorities regarding the people in her life. Women are motivated to spend time and effort on people.
[This is the second post in a series by Smart Design. Click here to read the introduction, here to read the first post, and here to read the second. -- Ed.]
Why not try to please all the people all the time? By and large, we should design for both men and women, and transparent design is the clear choice if a product is intended to be used by everyone. (As I discussed in my previous post, this differs from visible design, where physical differences or social needs suggest separate solutions.) But understanding gender differences may still be critical.
[This is the second post in a series by Smart Design. Click here to read the introduction and here to read the first post. -- Ed.]
To connect with women, companies often create separate “women only” products. This can have limited success, because women don’t always take kindly to being isolated by gender or being told that they’re “different.” There needs to be a rock-solid rationale for separate, visible design solutions. Visible design makes sense when physical differences exist, suggesting that men and women have incompatible needs.
[This is the first post in a series by Smart Design. Click here to read the introduction. -- Ed.]
The tagline of a Dos Equis ad reads, “Approach women like you do wild animals, with caution and a soothing voice.” I have to agree. Targeting a female audience requires a delicate, nuanced approach. Whether we live on the African plain or Manhattan, finesse with the opposite sex is regarded with respect and admiration.
Are designers ignoring sex?
[This is the introduction to a new series by Smart Design. For the first post, click here. -- Ed.]
“Girls like dolls and pink. Boys like fire trucks and blue.” The differences were obvious to the five-year-old who recently informed me of these seemingly clear divisions between genders. As Smart Design spends more and more time studying gender similarities and differences, and how this knowledge should influence good design, all I could think was, It doesn’t seem so clear-cut to me.
I think Gen Y is awesome because they are dramatically shaping how we all think about design. But, I am a little biased -- I was born in 1981, which makes me Gen Y, too. In April, one of my colleagues at Smart Design and I were asked to speak as part of the IDSA:LA California State Long Beach Duncan Anderson Design Lecture series. We decided to build our talk around understanding Gen Y and how to design for them. It turned out to be to be an opportune subject due to the fact that our audience was primarily made up of design students from the generation that we were exploring.