My Philosophy of DESIGN (as of 04-19-2013)

Designers make lives better. I believe design is about learning, but it also has a lot to do with teaching. In the past we may have thought of design as a visual medium similar to Picasso’s intimate drawings of his numerous wives. Or maybe we thought of design as the great ‘swoosh’ logo branding with it’s ingrained athletic appeal. Any way you think of it, design now is not about the visualizations or symbols any longer. Instead, it’s about creating the space in which our senses behave best and can be re-imagined by larger bodies with cultural and societal relationships. Much like philosopher Jean Baudrillard described as the Simulacra. A sociology theory that suggest “… our current society has replaced all reality and meaning with symbols and signs, and that human experience is of a simulation of reality.” [Wikipedia:] A designers role is not to continue to create the symbols and signs, but to help learn and teach the engagements or interactions.

How does one go about designing a space like that for others to dabble within? What are the boundaries of this space and how to you allow for those people creating to expand and develop that playground further? How does one keep their agency within the system? What types of senses will they use to narrate their experiences into a feedback loop? And will that feedback loop lead to an output of value for the designers, the users, and most importantly, the world peeking in?

If Baudrillard is correct in the concept of the Simulacra, then the next phase of the designer is surely focused on the Experience and Service models, as we call them now. Interaction has become a umbrella like term to catch the meaning of the role of design outside the “symbols and signs”. Though, these names are simply attempts at definitions for a larger context that we are all trying to tackle as designers, makers, and thinkers.

Like I said in the beginning of this post: design is about making peoples lives better. That’s putting it simply without all the nuances. What’s interesting though is that the world has caught wind of designers as researchers, prototypers, analyst, builders, and polishers. Companies are counting results from designer think tanks like IDEO, frog, and R/GA. The broader brush stoke of thinking about design as a learning and teaching mechanism is helping big engineering companies like FB, Google, and Apple find insights into the use of their fantastically complex products. Business are recognizing this opportunity, because they want to make lives better too.