Luke Wroblewski gives us Design Skills for Strategy: the short version
* Pattern Recognition: allows us to identify relationships within information. (the data).
* Story Telling: gives us a way to organize data into something meaningful by focusing on a big idea and supporting messages (the synthesis).
* Visual Hierarchy: gives us a way to tell the story effectively (the means).
* Empathy: allows us to make the story memorable and impactful (the meaning).
Read indepth explanation here.
Rob Tannen summarizes tips for creating effective design competition entries after his experience as Juror for the ID Magazine Annual Design Review, a snippet here,
The judging process is based on expert review and consensus - in other words the criteria changes from year to year based on the expertise, opinions and criteria of the particular judges in each category. At the same time, the nature of the judging process - one full day of going through a large number of entries - suggests the following to submitters:
1. Treat the Entry Process Like a Design Project: Successful designs meet the needs of their users. [snip]
Brianna Sylver writes on the application of tools and techniques from the field of design to human relationships on her new blog "Designing Marriage", taking design thinking a step further than possibly imagined. Here's a snippet from her introductory post back in October,
First things first, let me just mention that I'm not a marriage therapist. Nor am I a psychologist, psychiatrist, counselor, life coach, or belong to any other profession where I might regularly engage in activity where I advise people on how to operate in their daily lives. What I am, however, is an innovator, a designer, an ethnographer, a problem solver and a facilitator. The content of this blog will be rooted in the spirit of innovation, invention, iteration, and prototyping and how these principles apply to marriage and your most intimate relationships. [...] Over the years, I've found the same methods and frameworks that I use in my consulting work at Sylver Consulting to be quite helpful in opening the lines of communication with my husband of two years, Adriano Galvao.
niblettes rants on whether Rotman's Dean Martin may actually be wrong about business and design, here's a tidbit,
My second disagreement is with the claim that design as a practice and design firms as a manifestation of that practice are so unique, and so radically different from standard corporate operations, that a corporation must undergo a radical and fundamental change to include design.
This claim implies 1) that there is some standard way corporations operate, 2) that design firms operate different from this standard, and 3) these two different ways are incompatible.
I think all three of these implications are utterly absurd. Both corporations and design firms operate in wildly varying ways. Some design firms act more like accounting firms, and some corporations act more like frat houses. In other words there are no standards, and as a result it is impossible to claim any inherent incompatibility between such non-existent standards.
Gong Szeto points out that there are ways to classify human needs and aspirations beyond boring old Maslow.
And finally, Jan Chipchases writes about service design for the rural or BoP (base or bottom of the pyramid) users in the developing world, here's a key snippet,
Service design is challenging but a number of factors stand in Eko's favour - the service leverages a known behaviour (dialing a long phone number) on a ubiquitously available technology (mobile phones) and only uses the most basic features of that technology (USSD/SMS).
It also leverages a neighbourhood network of service representatives to sign up and assist (new) customers, which in turn supports what we term proximate usage - where it's not necessary to know how to do everything yourself if there's someone nearby who can take care of it for you. If you live in a country like the UK you're more likely to pay someone to help out, in India there's a higher likelihood and acceptance of turning to your extended network.
Lastly, even if it means learning an arcane set of commands, it provides access to rudimentary banking where before there was none. For every feature, product or service: how is it discovered? what does it enable? how motivated is the user to learn? Yeah it could be simpler, but sometimes the most elegant solution is the one that is accessible to everyone and that works.
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