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The Design Way: Intentional Change in an Unpredictable World
Humans did not discover fire--they designed it. Design is not defined by software programs, blueprints, or font choice. When we create new things--technologies, organizations, processes, systems, environments, ways of thinking--we engage in design. With this expansive view of design as their premise, in The Design Way, Harold Nelson and Erik Stolterman make the case for de ...more
Hardcover, 282 pages
Published July 27th 2012 by MIT Press (MA)
(first published January 1st 2003)
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Something that should be on more reading lists. Not just designers, but with the way that design thinking is influencing other practices, it's relevant to business and general thinking equally. Jargon and terminology may be specific to design, but the ideas around judement as wisdom, and desiderata are philosophically interesting generally. Specific to design, it clearly lays out contemporary thinking, and has pointed out to me and clarified ideas and authors which I can further pursue. Toynbee' ...more
"Judgment making is essential to design. It does not replicate decision making but it is as necessary. The ability to make solid design judgments is often what distinguishes a stellar designer from a mediocre one." - Quoted from chapter 8 of this book. If you like philosophising about design, inventing truckloads of fanciful jargon to describe your baseless generalisations, and finally coming up with conclusions that everyone else already knew, then this book is for you.
I really liked Thoughtful Interaction Design, so I thought I'd like this. Nope. It shares with Thoughtful Interaction Design a kind of obtuse prose, which served TID in making arguments from the ground up. Unfortunately, this book seems primarily to be based on a desire to elevate the status of design by codifying its methodology and the provenance thereof by finding intellectual precursors and creating a shared 'design epistemology'. Shaky already, it proceeds to not mention engineering and its ...more
I had this book for my Design Theory course taught by Prof. Erik Stolterman at Indiana University. Amazing read, if you get the gist of schemas and ideas being expressed in the book. I would highly recommend this book for designers interested in application of design thinking in other disciplines like business, pedagogy, art and architecture. Shoot me an email if you have any comments and/or recommendations about the book. I might drop by Erik's (Stolterman's) office for his thoughts :).
Not sure that I really bought all the arguments or found them particularly enlightening. I think one thing that would have helped was more concrete examples, as it's clear the authors have experiences they're referring to but by refusing to get too specific make it difficult to know for sure you're translating their arguments correctly. Still, there are a few gems in the book.