“it’s time to rethink the system before everyone is selling fake digital vegetables on a fake farm for a living.”
“Sometimes life is hard. Things go wrong — and in life, and in love, and in business, and in friendship, and in health, and in all the other ways in which life can go wrong. And when things get tough, this is what you should do: Make good art. I’m serious. Husband runs off with a politician? Make good art. Leg crushed and then eaten by a mutated boa constrictor? Make good art. IRS on your trail? Make good art. Cat exploded? Make good art. Someone on the internet thinks what you’re doing is stupid, or evil, or it’s all been done before? Make good art.”
“Find people who believe the world will be better when your company succeeds. That’s an incentive that money can never buy.”
“We’ll Be A Better Company if Employees Disconnect” — this is awesome.
“…we’re becoming like the mal-formed weight lifter who trains only their upper body and has tiny little legs. We’re radically over-developing the parts of quick thinking, distractable brain and letting the long-form-thinking, creative, contemplative, solitude-seeking, thought-consolidating pieces of our brain atrophy by not using them. And, to me, that’s both sad and dangerous.”
“It is difficult to imagine the depths of despair into which those can be driven who, even after the end of the working day, are engrossed in their intricate designs and who are pursued, into their dreams, by the feeling they’ve got hold of the wrong thread.
— W.G. Sebald, The Rings of Saturn”
So much truth in this article! So much yes. Thank you, Mike Monteiro! (@Mike_FTW)
“…design is a complex, multi-faceted, cross-disciplinary practice that takes decades to master”
I’d bet this is an extremely common scenario.
Link: (11/1) Why is so much of Silicon Valley obsessed with small ideas that don't solve a problem? - Quora →
I was having a similar conversation in a bar recently. Fascinating points made on all sides.
Another great blog post from my friend Keith, who’s been doing web design for about as long as there’s been web design. Here he offers some coaching to get everyone out of the office and talking to their users, which is exactly the same advice given to everyone at a recent software product development conference I was at last week. It seems intimidating or logistically challenging, but when you read what Keith has to say, you’ll realize it doesn’t have to be hard at all.
I’ve been asked a lot lately for resources for software design/interaction design, design for lean/agile startups, or just plain user experience design, especially as a starting point for non-designers or those looking to get into UX design. Here’s a list that includes everything I could think of to recommend off the top of my head, plus a whole lot more.
A recent epiphany of mine: There are tons of resources for designers from the agency/freelance point of view, but it’s harder to find resources for people doing software design in an agile development team*. This here is a one-stop shop for the latter. Check every single one of these links out. Thank you Janice and LUXr!
* Why? I think when you’re an agency or a freelance designer, talking about your work, speaking at conferences, and promoting yourself through blogs and social networks directly affects your bottom line — these things serve to win you clients and a higher pay rate. In fact, it’s probably impossible to compete in the market these days without doing these things. So it’s baked in.
When you’re on the payroll as a full-time employee of a software development company, on the other hand, it can seem like the opposite is true. It can feel like you’re in the trenches, and you’re doing everything you can just to keep up with the team. Who has time to blog or put together a presentation? I’ve been heads down doing this work for years, and haven’t taken the time to come up for air and see what the landscape is around me.
But there are plenty of other people doing this same job, and it can only help us to publish our findings, techniques, and thoughts and make sure our side is represented. It also helps your credibility, internally with your team, as well as for your company if you are a good representative for the design community. That’s my epiphany :) I will start trying to publish my own stuff as soon as I can get some thoughts together… For now, I’ll try and do a better job of linking to more of these kinds of articles and sites.
Last week I went to a Marty Cagan workshop about Building Products Customers Love. From there, I dug into the archives of Cagan’s blog and found some great gems for software product designers. This one is excellent for designers looking to define their role in a software engineering team, right down to what the heck to call yourself.
For the record, as someone who does both interaction design and visual design (and some product management and user research, thrown in), I used to call myself Product Designer, as Cagan recommends for peeps like me, but then I met an Industrial Designer who felt that term was confusing, as that’s what they are generally called (makes sense.) So maybe Software Product Designer would make sense? For now, I’m sticking with UX Designer as a representation of my passion for the holistic design of a software product.