IxD & ID (was RE: Patriarchs of the Design Family)

20 Nov 2003 - 2:49pm
10 years ago
2 replies
729 reads
Dave Malouf
2005

Kristoffer, I totally agree that this is a great discussion.

So are we in agreement then that there are two distinct disciplines? That
these disciplines have areas where they are completely tied together and
completely separate from each other?
Tied together: mobile computing, medical devices, et. Al.
Separated: softare development, web applications (unless you are redesigning
the PC at the same time) on the IxD side and furniture and cutlery as
examples of the ID side.

I think that there will be people who have your level of passion and
commitment to the whole who want to be uber specialists who encompass both
disciplines and there will be collaborative teams made up of people with
these roles.

E.g. on the software side of things, it is very common for someone like
myself (an IxD) to work on a project hand and hand w/ someone who is a
visual designer. We both know and understand our domains of influence and
accept each other's opinions as support and help even when the other is
commenting on our domain. I don't see why this would be any different in
when we begin to mix the binary and the analog together.

That also being said, ID as a much older and more established discipline
probably has a lot to offer the IxD community as a whole whether we deal
purely in digital or deal in mixed media solutions. And conversely b/c IxD
has a long history of being informed from HCI, cognitive psychology, and
engineering with different points of view, we have a lot to offer the ID
community.

-- dave

-----Original Message-----
From:
discuss-interactiondesigners.com-bounces at lists.interactiondesigners.com
[mailto:discuss-interactiondesigners.com-bounces at lists.interactiondesigners.
com] On Behalf Of Kristoffer Åberg
Sent: Thursday, November 20, 2003 2:29 PM
To: discuss at interactiondesigners.com
Subject: Re: [ID Discuss] Patriarchs of the Design Family

A very interesting discussion I must say. I came to think of a paper
presented at DIS 2002, "Form is Function" by Bosse Westerlund, downloadable
at http://cid.nada.kth.se/pdf/CID-173.pdf

"A designer usually intends an artefact to have some function(s). This
influences the way (s)he designs the artefact and chooses to shape its form
in such a way that it gives the user clues to the intended functions. Doing
so the form itself becomes an intended function...The user is influenced by
the form of the artifact, as well as its other properties. A user may or may
not use the artefact for the same functions as were intended in the first
place. But if (s)he uses the artefact for its intended functions, the form
has probably helped. Then the form is a function to the user as well."

In addition to form and function the paper also deals with the *meanings*
users acquire from dealing with artefacts; taking the cue from Robert I
think meaning has close relationship to behaviour, partly due to having read
another interesting piece of literature, Paul Dourish's "Where the Action
Is" (http://www.dourish.com/embodied/). Maybe I'm running off on a tangent
here; some bedside reading for the interested, for what its worth.

Perpetually exploring my professional relationship with my industrial
designer colleagues I would side with Coryndon - the future of interaction
design and industrial design are one, at least in the domains I'm active in,
mobile and ubiquitous computing (I'd love to hear your thoughts on that!).
Whether this means "über designers" mastering both interaction design and
industrial design, a focus on either interaction design or industrial design
but with some skills from the other discipline, or inter-disciplinary
collaboration will be interesting to see (I have personal experience only
from the latter two...yet). But in the meantime I'm trying to improve my
visualization skills, building furniture and the like, to get a better sense
of form, all in order to facilitate discussion and collaboration with
industrial designers. And to educate them about interaction and behaviour,
wherever needed...

/Kristoffer

----- Original Message -----
From: "Reimann, Robert" <Robert_Reimann at bose.com>
To: <discuss at interactiondesigners.com>
Sent: Thursday, November 20, 2003 7:25 PM
Subject: FW: [ID Discuss] Patriarchs of the Design Family

>
> I'm sorry if I've led anyone to believe that I think
> industrial design is "unconcerned with interaction".
> What I was trying to say (thanks Dave H.) is that interaction
> design (as I would characterize it) is concerned FIRST with
> behavior, and then with form (as it applies to behavior).
> Although industrial design must concern itself with behavior,
> its focus, I would argue, is in most cases primarily form.
>
> I was also not trying to imply that form is unimportant to IntD,
> or should be entirely ceded to other disciplines. However,
> form is a relatively well-understood problem with a broad
> range of design tools and talents available, while behavior
> is playing catch-up. We need to focus where the effort is most
> needed. It would be great if all interaction designers could also
> be excellent visual or industrial designers, but in my experience
> there are few people with all the requisite talents and training
> (I however do agree that it's very helpful for interaction designers
> to have some level of basic visual design skill). I have seen extremely
> successful collaboration between graphic designers, interaction designers,
> and industrial designers, and don't believe that it's in any way an
> all-or-nothing game.
>
> I would also argue that form is not, or shouldn't be, the driver of
> behavior, except perhaps at the very detailed level. At the conceptual and
> structural level, I think it must be the other way around. But these are I
> think all methodological quibbles, not an ideological split.
>
> Robert.
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Coryndon Luxmoore [mailto:cluxmoore at dakasa.com]
> Sent: Thursday, November 20, 2003 12:54 PM
> To: discuss at interactiondesigners.com
> Subject: RE: [ID Discuss] Patriarchs of the Design Family
>
>
> I disagree with his assertion that form is the primary driver of design.
It
> is the primary result it is the understanding of behavior that makes a
> product truly successful. A great example of this is the Palm vs. the
Newton
> both interfaces were/are great but the form did not meet the behaviors
that
> the user required the product to meet.
>
> To talk about design and to claim the design space requires that we step
up
> and take on form as a primary tool of our discipline. Form affect
usability,
> the behavior, and the experience. Form is the primary means for expressing
> and supporting the behaviors. How many times have you seen the product
> negatively affected by the form of the solution? Text too small, buttons
> looking inactive etc. For me at least, claiming one over the other is a
> strange prospect. Form is control over the solution that I would be
> uncomfortable ceding to someone outside the interaction design space. Form
> is a primary driver of behavior.
>
> I believe that we must be responsible for form. Otherwise we already have
> the formal disciplines, organizations, and titles out there to support
what
> we do.
>
> Yes we will need people that specialize in form over behavior and
visa-versa
> but I believe all interaction designers must have both skills to be
> successful.
>
> --Coryndon __________________________________________________________
> Coryndon Luxmoore
> Design Architect
> Dakasa
> 133 Federal Street
> Boston, MA 02110
> USA
> e: cluxmoore at dakasa.com
> t: 617.292.7700
> f: 617.292.7704
> ____________________________________________________________
> This email message and any files transmitted with it contain confidential
> information
> intended only for the person(s) to whom this email message is addressed.
If
> you
> have received this email message in error, please notify the sender
> immediately by
> telephone or email and destroy the original message without making a copy.
> Thank you.
>
> Dakasa
> t: 617.292.7700
> ____________________________________________________________
>
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From:
> discuss-interactiondesigners.com-bounces at lists.interactiondesigners.com
> [mailto:discuss-interactiondesigners.com-bounces at lists.interactiondesign
> ers.com] On Behalf Of David Heller
> Sent: Thursday, November 20, 2003 12:06 PM
> To: discuss at interactiondesigners.com
> Subject: RE: [ID Discuss] Patriarchs of the Design Family
>
>
> I don't think that Robert was saying that ID doesn't deal w/ the user. I
> think he was (correct me Robert if I'm wrong) that the final design is the
> form, whereas IxD's try to focus on the behavior primarily and fit the
form
> over that. In fact many IxDs would probably not even concern themselves w/
> the final form's aesthetics at all, whereas ID is very much involved in
the
> final aesthetics.
>
> That isn't to say that IxD doesn't want to inform the final form, but that
> IxD as a discipline (and again, not a person or role) at its core does not
> design the final form of a product. The person involved can have that
skill
> and thus would have both IxD and ID disciplines under their belt, but
these
> are different disciplines in deed.
>
> Like an IA who can also do graphic design ... These are two disciplines in
> one body humanus.
>
> -- dave
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From:
> discuss-interactiondesigners.com-bounces at lists.interactiondesigners.com
> [mailto:discuss-interactiondesigners.com-bounces at lists.interactiondesign
> ers.
> com] On Behalf Of Coryndon Luxmoore
> Sent: Thursday, November 20, 2003 11:58 AM
> To: discuss at interactiondesigners.com
> Subject: RE: [ID Discuss] Patriarchs of the Design Family
>
> Having been trained in ID then spending the bulk of my career working in
the
> interaction design field. I would have to say that it is unfair to
> characterize ID as unconcerned with the interaction of the individual with
> the product. Every skill that I apply to interaction design was first
> learned at the knees of product design; understanding your user,
> collaborating with engineers, the value of elegant solutions, as well as
the
> overall design process.
>
> During my time in the ID program at RISD. The students there were obsessed
> with the idea of "ritual." The process by which a product is used and
> incorporated into a user's daily life. After chatting with a friend who
> teaches in the program I hear that this is still true. Is this not
> interaction?
>
> In both fields there are members who create beautiful form for the sake of
> form to those members who focus on the need of the user to achieve a task.
> Confusing those designs that get published in glossy magazines with those
> that are the bulk of the work in the field is unfair. Can you imagine what
> someone might say about interaction design if they just judged us by the
> beautiful but not very functional flash and web work out there?
>
> I firmly believe that the future of interaction design and product design
> are one. Neither field can be successful without the other. A beautiful
> product design with a horrible interface is a horrible product, A
beautiful
> interface with a horrible product design is a horrible product.
>
> --Coryndon __________________________________________________________
> Coryndon Luxmoore
> Design Architect
> Dakasa
> 133 Federal Street
> Boston, MA 02110
> USA
> e: cluxmoore at dakasa.com
> t: 617.292.7700
> f: 617.292.7704
____________________________________________________________
> This email message and any files transmitted with it contain confidential
> information intended only for the person(s) to whom this email message is
> addressed. If you have received this email message in error, please notify
> the sender immediately by telephone or email and destroy the original
> message without making a copy.
> Thank you.
>
> Dakasa
> t: 617.292.7700
____________________________________________________________
>
>
>
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From:
> discuss-interactiondesigners.com-bounces at lists.interactiondesigners.com
> [mailto:discuss-interactiondesigners.com-bounces at lists.interactiondesign
> ers.com] On Behalf Of Beth Mazur
> Sent: Thursday, November 20, 2003 11:15 AM
> To: Reimann, Robert
> Cc: discuss at interactiondesigners.com
> Subject: Re: [ID Discuss] Patriarchs of the Design Family
>
>
> Quoting "Reimann, Robert" <Robert_Reimann at bose.com>:
>
> > Calling interaction design "digital industrial design"
> > might be a useful metaphor to help traditional designers feel more
> > comfortable with it, but like most metaphors, it has significant
> > limits. In this case, the core differentiator between IntD and other
> > design disciplines -- a focus on behavior before form -- is buried.
>
> I'm only peripherally familiar with industrial design, but the experience
> that I've had with it suggests that it shares this focus on behavior
before
> form; then again, I worked with people who were faculty at Carnegie
Mellon's
> school of design, so perhaps they aren't typical. But this perspective
seems
> to be supported by IDSA; here's some of the text from the "About ID"
> page on their site that resonated with me yesterday:
>
> Industrial design is the professional service of creating
> and developing concepts and specifications that optimize
> the function, value and appearance of products and systems
> for the mutual benefit of both user and manufacturer.
>
> ...
>
> The industrial designer's unique contribution places emphasis
> on those aspects of the product or system that relate most
> directly to human characteristics, needs and interests. This
> contribution requires specialized understanding of visual, tactile,
> safety and convenience criteria, with concern for the user. Education
>
> and experience in anticipating psychological, physiological and
> sociological factors that influence and are perceived by the user
> are essential industrial design resources.
>
> >From http://www.idsa.org/webmodules/articles/anmviewer.asp?a=89&z=23
>
> It may be that IDSA is trying to change a perception that it shares with
> graphic design that the kudos and coverage goes to those who do form over
> function. But I wonder if it is really so rare to find the alternative in
> industrial design?
>
> Beth Mazur
> IDblog: http://idblog.org _______________________________________________
> _______________________________________________
> Interaction Design Discussion List
> discuss at interactiondesigners.com
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Comments

20 Nov 2003 - 4:35pm
Kristoffer Åberg
2003

Dave, I have nothing to add. My sentiments exactly!

/Kristoffer

----- Original Message -----
From: "David Heller" <dave at interactiondesigners.com>
To: <discuss at interactiondesigners.com>
Sent: Thursday, November 20, 2003 8:49 PM
Subject: IxD & ID (was RE: [ID Discuss] Patriarchs of the Design Family)

> Kristoffer, I totally agree that this is a great discussion.
>
> So are we in agreement then that there are two distinct disciplines? That
> these disciplines have areas where they are completely tied together and
> completely separate from each other?
> Tied together: mobile computing, medical devices, et. Al.
> Separated: softare development, web applications (unless you are
redesigning
> the PC at the same time) on the IxD side and furniture and cutlery as
> examples of the ID side.
>
> I think that there will be people who have your level of passion and
> commitment to the whole who want to be uber specialists who encompass both
> disciplines and there will be collaborative teams made up of people with
> these roles.
>
> E.g. on the software side of things, it is very common for someone like
> myself (an IxD) to work on a project hand and hand w/ someone who is a
> visual designer. We both know and understand our domains of influence and
> accept each other's opinions as support and help even when the other is
> commenting on our domain. I don't see why this would be any different in
> when we begin to mix the binary and the analog together.
>
> That also being said, ID as a much older and more established discipline
> probably has a lot to offer the IxD community as a whole whether we deal
> purely in digital or deal in mixed media solutions. And conversely b/c IxD
> has a long history of being informed from HCI, cognitive psychology, and
> engineering with different points of view, we have a lot to offer the ID
> community.
>
> -- dave
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From:
> discuss-interactiondesigners.com-bounces at lists.interactiondesigners.com
>
[mailto:discuss-interactiondesigners.com-bounces at lists.interactiondesigners.
> com] On Behalf Of Kristoffer Åberg
> Sent: Thursday, November 20, 2003 2:29 PM
> To: discuss at interactiondesigners.com
> Subject: Re: [ID Discuss] Patriarchs of the Design Family
>
> A very interesting discussion I must say. I came to think of a paper
> presented at DIS 2002, "Form is Function" by Bosse Westerlund,
downloadable
> at http://cid.nada.kth.se/pdf/CID-173.pdf
>
> "A designer usually intends an artefact to have some function(s). This
> influences the way (s)he designs the artefact and chooses to shape its
form
> in such a way that it gives the user clues to the intended functions.
Doing
> so the form itself becomes an intended function...The user is influenced
by
> the form of the artifact, as well as its other properties. A user may or
may
> not use the artefact for the same functions as were intended in the first
> place. But if (s)he uses the artefact for its intended functions, the form
> has probably helped. Then the form is a function to the user as well."
>
> In addition to form and function the paper also deals with the *meanings*
> users acquire from dealing with artefacts; taking the cue from Robert I
> think meaning has close relationship to behaviour, partly due to having
read
> another interesting piece of literature, Paul Dourish's "Where the Action
> Is" (http://www.dourish.com/embodied/). Maybe I'm running off on a tangent
> here; some bedside reading for the interested, for what its worth.
>
> Perpetually exploring my professional relationship with my industrial
> designer colleagues I would side with Coryndon - the future of interaction
> design and industrial design are one, at least in the domains I'm active
in,
> mobile and ubiquitous computing (I'd love to hear your thoughts on that!).
> Whether this means "über designers" mastering both interaction design and
> industrial design, a focus on either interaction design or industrial
design
> but with some skills from the other discipline, or inter-disciplinary
> collaboration will be interesting to see (I have personal experience only
> from the latter two...yet). But in the meantime I'm trying to improve my
> visualization skills, building furniture and the like, to get a better
sense
> of form, all in order to facilitate discussion and collaboration with
> industrial designers. And to educate them about interaction and behaviour,
> wherever needed...
>
> /Kristoffer
>
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Reimann, Robert" <Robert_Reimann at bose.com>
> To: <discuss at interactiondesigners.com>
> Sent: Thursday, November 20, 2003 7:25 PM
> Subject: FW: [ID Discuss] Patriarchs of the Design Family
>
>
> >
> > I'm sorry if I've led anyone to believe that I think
> > industrial design is "unconcerned with interaction".
> > What I was trying to say (thanks Dave H.) is that interaction
> > design (as I would characterize it) is concerned FIRST with
> > behavior, and then with form (as it applies to behavior).
> > Although industrial design must concern itself with behavior,
> > its focus, I would argue, is in most cases primarily form.
> >
> > I was also not trying to imply that form is unimportant to IntD,
> > or should be entirely ceded to other disciplines. However,
> > form is a relatively well-understood problem with a broad
> > range of design tools and talents available, while behavior
> > is playing catch-up. We need to focus where the effort is most
> > needed. It would be great if all interaction designers could also
> > be excellent visual or industrial designers, but in my experience
> > there are few people with all the requisite talents and training
> > (I however do agree that it's very helpful for interaction designers
> > to have some level of basic visual design skill). I have seen extremely
> > successful collaboration between graphic designers, interaction
designers,
> > and industrial designers, and don't believe that it's in any way an
> > all-or-nothing game.
> >
> > I would also argue that form is not, or shouldn't be, the driver of
> > behavior, except perhaps at the very detailed level. At the conceptual
and
> > structural level, I think it must be the other way around. But these are
I
> > think all methodological quibbles, not an ideological split.
> >
> > Robert.
> >
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: Coryndon Luxmoore [mailto:cluxmoore at dakasa.com]
> > Sent: Thursday, November 20, 2003 12:54 PM
> > To: discuss at interactiondesigners.com
> > Subject: RE: [ID Discuss] Patriarchs of the Design Family
> >
> >
> > I disagree with his assertion that form is the primary driver of design.
> It
> > is the primary result it is the understanding of behavior that makes a
> > product truly successful. A great example of this is the Palm vs. the
> Newton
> > both interfaces were/are great but the form did not meet the behaviors
> that
> > the user required the product to meet.
> >
> > To talk about design and to claim the design space requires that we step
> up
> > and take on form as a primary tool of our discipline. Form affect
> usability,
> > the behavior, and the experience. Form is the primary means for
expressing
> > and supporting the behaviors. How many times have you seen the product
> > negatively affected by the form of the solution? Text too small, buttons
> > looking inactive etc. For me at least, claiming one over the other is a
> > strange prospect. Form is control over the solution that I would be
> > uncomfortable ceding to someone outside the interaction design space.
Form
> > is a primary driver of behavior.
> >
> > I believe that we must be responsible for form. Otherwise we already
have
> > the formal disciplines, organizations, and titles out there to support
> what
> > we do.
> >
> > Yes we will need people that specialize in form over behavior and
> visa-versa
> > but I believe all interaction designers must have both skills to be
> > successful.
> >
> > --Coryndon __________________________________________________________
> > Coryndon Luxmoore
> > Design Architect
> > Dakasa
> > 133 Federal Street
> > Boston, MA 02110
> > USA
> > e: cluxmoore at dakasa.com
> > t: 617.292.7700
> > f: 617.292.7704
> > ____________________________________________________________
> > This email message and any files transmitted with it contain
confidential
> > information
> > intended only for the person(s) to whom this email message is addressed.
> If
> > you
> > have received this email message in error, please notify the sender
> > immediately by
> > telephone or email and destroy the original message without making a
copy.
> > Thank you.
> >
> > Dakasa
> > t: 617.292.7700
> > ____________________________________________________________
> >
> >
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From:
> > discuss-interactiondesigners.com-bounces at lists.interactiondesigners.com
> > [mailto:discuss-interactiondesigners.com-bounces at lists.interactiondesign
> > ers.com] On Behalf Of David Heller
> > Sent: Thursday, November 20, 2003 12:06 PM
> > To: discuss at interactiondesigners.com
> > Subject: RE: [ID Discuss] Patriarchs of the Design Family
> >
> >
> > I don't think that Robert was saying that ID doesn't deal w/ the user. I
> > think he was (correct me Robert if I'm wrong) that the final design is
the
> > form, whereas IxD's try to focus on the behavior primarily and fit the
> form
> > over that. In fact many IxDs would probably not even concern themselves
w/
> > the final form's aesthetics at all, whereas ID is very much involved in
> the
> > final aesthetics.
> >
> > That isn't to say that IxD doesn't want to inform the final form, but
that
> > IxD as a discipline (and again, not a person or role) at its core does
not
> > design the final form of a product. The person involved can have that
> skill
> > and thus would have both IxD and ID disciplines under their belt, but
> these
> > are different disciplines in deed.
> >
> > Like an IA who can also do graphic design ... These are two disciplines
in
> > one body humanus.
> >
> > -- dave
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From:
> > discuss-interactiondesigners.com-bounces at lists.interactiondesigners.com
> > [mailto:discuss-interactiondesigners.com-bounces at lists.interactiondesign
> > ers.
> > com] On Behalf Of Coryndon Luxmoore
> > Sent: Thursday, November 20, 2003 11:58 AM
> > To: discuss at interactiondesigners.com
> > Subject: RE: [ID Discuss] Patriarchs of the Design Family
> >
> > Having been trained in ID then spending the bulk of my career working in
> the
> > interaction design field. I would have to say that it is unfair to
> > characterize ID as unconcerned with the interaction of the individual
with
> > the product. Every skill that I apply to interaction design was first
> > learned at the knees of product design; understanding your user,
> > collaborating with engineers, the value of elegant solutions, as well as
> the
> > overall design process.
> >
> > During my time in the ID program at RISD. The students there were
obsessed
> > with the idea of "ritual." The process by which a product is used and
> > incorporated into a user's daily life. After chatting with a friend who
> > teaches in the program I hear that this is still true. Is this not
> > interaction?
> >
> > In both fields there are members who create beautiful form for the sake
of
> > form to those members who focus on the need of the user to achieve a
task.
> > Confusing those designs that get published in glossy magazines with
those
> > that are the bulk of the work in the field is unfair. Can you imagine
what
> > someone might say about interaction design if they just judged us by the
> > beautiful but not very functional flash and web work out there?
> >
> > I firmly believe that the future of interaction design and product
design
> > are one. Neither field can be successful without the other. A beautiful
> > product design with a horrible interface is a horrible product, A
> beautiful
> > interface with a horrible product design is a horrible product.
> >
> > --Coryndon __________________________________________________________
> > Coryndon Luxmoore
> > Design Architect
> > Dakasa
> > 133 Federal Street
> > Boston, MA 02110
> > USA
> > e: cluxmoore at dakasa.com
> > t: 617.292.7700
> > f: 617.292.7704
> ____________________________________________________________
> > This email message and any files transmitted with it contain
confidential
> > information intended only for the person(s) to whom this email message
is
> > addressed. If you have received this email message in error, please
notify
> > the sender immediately by telephone or email and destroy the original
> > message without making a copy.
> > Thank you.
> >
> > Dakasa
> > t: 617.292.7700
> ____________________________________________________________
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From:
> > discuss-interactiondesigners.com-bounces at lists.interactiondesigners.com
> > [mailto:discuss-interactiondesigners.com-bounces at lists.interactiondesign
> > ers.com] On Behalf Of Beth Mazur
> > Sent: Thursday, November 20, 2003 11:15 AM
> > To: Reimann, Robert
> > Cc: discuss at interactiondesigners.com
> > Subject: Re: [ID Discuss] Patriarchs of the Design Family
> >
> >
> > Quoting "Reimann, Robert" <Robert_Reimann at bose.com>:
> >
> > > Calling interaction design "digital industrial design"
> > > might be a useful metaphor to help traditional designers feel more
> > > comfortable with it, but like most metaphors, it has significant
> > > limits. In this case, the core differentiator between IntD and other
> > > design disciplines -- a focus on behavior before form -- is buried.
> >
> > I'm only peripherally familiar with industrial design, but the
experience
> > that I've had with it suggests that it shares this focus on behavior
> before
> > form; then again, I worked with people who were faculty at Carnegie
> Mellon's
> > school of design, so perhaps they aren't typical. But this perspective
> seems
> > to be supported by IDSA; here's some of the text from the "About ID"
> > page on their site that resonated with me yesterday:
> >
> > Industrial design is the professional service of creating
> > and developing concepts and specifications that optimize
> > the function, value and appearance of products and systems
> > for the mutual benefit of both user and manufacturer.
> >
> > ...
> >
> > The industrial designer's unique contribution places emphasis
> > on those aspects of the product or system that relate most
> > directly to human characteristics, needs and interests. This
> > contribution requires specialized understanding of visual, tactile,
> > safety and convenience criteria, with concern for the user. Education
> >
> > and experience in anticipating psychological, physiological and
> > sociological factors that influence and are perceived by the user
> > are essential industrial design resources.
> >
> > >From http://www.idsa.org/webmodules/articles/anmviewer.asp?a=89&z=23
> >
> > It may be that IDSA is trying to change a perception that it shares with
> > graphic design that the kudos and coverage goes to those who do form
over
> > function. But I wonder if it is really so rare to find the alternative
in
> > industrial design?
> >
> > Beth Mazur
> > IDblog: http://idblog.org
_______________________________________________
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20 Nov 2003 - 10:08pm
Beth Mazur
2003

At 2:49 PM -0500 11/20/03, David Heller wrote:
>So are we in agreement then that there are two distinct disciplines?

Yikes! When I mentioned digital industrial design, I certainly didn't mean
to imply that traditional non-digital industrial design and interaction
design weren't distinct (or at least, didn't have unique aspects to them).

I was more or less going after the commonalities (in the same way that
some try to focus on the commonalities of the world's religions). This
all came about because we were wondering if an industrial design
organization could represent us, and I was suggesting that they
might, given that to some extent, we share the same problems.
But I think Coryndon and Kristoffer said it better than I!

One quick question though before I stop beating this dead horse :).

Is it that industrial designers focus on form over function? Or is it
that in their world, the complexity of the associated human behaviors
is far more simple. Or if it isn't simple, say like for an automobile,
there are established conventions and/or patterns that designers
use rather than spending lots of time on designing for them.

Similarly, to some extent, many industrial design products are
much further along in their product lifecycles (compared to software
and web applications), so that functionality ceases to be a product
differentiator and form becomes much more important.

Thus one way of looking at this is just to say that the current state
of industrial design is just further along the curve than interaction design.
It may not be in my lifetime (I'm an old fart), but is it impossible to
imagine a world where software and web applications are actually
usable? And choosing between spreadsheet programs is like
choosing between Ford and Toyota?

Beth Mazur
IDblog: http://idblog.org

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