Philosophies and studies of design::Design


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Philosophies and studies of design There are countless philosophies for guiding design as the design values and its accompanying aspects within modern design vary, both between different schools of thought and among practicing designers.<ref>Holm, Ivar (2006). Ideas and Beliefs in Architecture and Industrial design: How attitudes, orientations and underlying assumptions shape the built environment. Oslo School of Architecture and Design. ISBN 82-547-0174-1.</ref> Design philosophies are usually for determining design goals. A design goal may range from solving the least significant individual problem of the smallest element, to the most holistic influential utopian goals. Design goals are usually for guiding design. However, conflicts over immediate and minor goals may lead to questioning the purpose of design, perhaps to set better long term or ultimate goals.

Philosophies for guiding design

Design philosophies are fundamental guiding principles that dictate how a designer approaches his/her practice. Reflections on material culture and environmental concerns (Sustainable design) can guide a design philosophy. One example is the First Things First manifesto which was launched within the graphic design community and states "We propose a reversal of priorities in favor of more useful, lasting and democratic forms of communication – a mindshift away from product marketing and toward the exploration and production of a new kind of meaning. The scope of debate is shrinking; it must expand. Consumerism is running uncontested; it must be challenged by other perspectives expressed, in part, through the visual languages and resources of design."<ref name="">First Things First 2000 a design manifesto. manifesto published jointly by 33 signatories in: Adbusters, the AIGA journal, Blueprint, Emigre, Eye, Form, Items fall 1999/spring 2000</ref>

In The Sciences of the Artificial by polymath Herbert A. Simon the author asserts design to be a meta-discipline of all professions. "Engineers are not the only professional designers. Everyone designs who devises courses of action aimed at changing existing situations into preferred ones. The intellectual activity that produces material artifacts is no different fundamentally from the one that prescribes remedies for a sick patient or the one that devises a new sales plan for a company or a social welfare policy for a state. Design, so construed, is the core of all professional training; it is the principal mark that distinguishes the professions from the sciences. Schools of engineering, as well as schools of architecture, business, education, law, and medicine, are all centrally concerned with the process of design."<ref name="Herbert A. Simon 1996">Simon (1996), p. 111.</ref>

Approaches to design

A design approach is a general philosophy that may or may not include a guide for specific methods. Some are to guide the overall goal of the design. Other approaches are to guide the tendencies of the designer. A combination of approaches may be used if they don't conflict.

Some popular approaches include:

  • KISS principle, (Keep it Simple Stupid), which strives to eliminate unnecessary complications.
  • There is more than one way to do it (TIMTOWTDI), a philosophy to allow multiple methods of doing the same thing.
  • Use-centered design, which focuses on the goals and tasks associated with the use of the artifact, rather than focusing on the end user.
  • User-centered design, which focuses on the needs, wants, and limitations of the end user of the designed artifact.
  • Critical design uses designed artifacts as an embodied critique or commentary on existing values, morals, and practices in a culture.
  • Service design designing or organizing the experience around a product, the service associated with a product's use.
  • Transgenerational design, the practice of making products and environments compatible with those physical and sensory impairments associated with human aging and which limit major activities of daily living.
  • Speculative design, the speculative design process doesn’t necessarily define a specific problem to solve, but establishes a provocative starting point from which a design process emerges. The result is an evolution of fluctuating iteration and reflection using designed objects to provoke questions and stimulate discussion in academic and research settings.

Methods of designing


Design Methods is a broad area that focuses on:

  • Exploring possibilities and constraints by focusing critical thinking skills to research and define problem spaces for existing products or services—or the creation of new categories; (see also Brainstorming)
  • Redefining the specifications of design solutions which can lead to better guidelines for traditional design activities (graphic, industrial, architectural, etc.);
  • Managing the process of exploring, defining, creating artifacts continually over time
  • Prototyping possible scenarios, or solutions that incrementally or significantly improve the inherited situation
  • Trendspotting; understanding the trend process.

Design sections
Intro   Definitions   Design as a process  Design disciplines  Philosophies and studies of design  Terminology  See also  Footnotes  Bibliography  

Philosophies and studies of design
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