WHAT I LEARNED ABOUT THE WEB IN 2011…
Two points stood out to me in this post.
If a single idea has followed me around this year, from politics to art and work to friendships, it’s been this one: “it’s more complicated than that.”
It’s centrally important to seek simplicity, and especially to avoid making things hard to use or understand. But if we want to make things that are usefully simple without being truncated or simplistic, we have to recognize and respect complexity—both in the design problems we address, and in the way we do our work.
–Erin Kissane, Editor of Contents magazine, Content Strategist at Brain Traffic
Respecting complexity is not an easy task to accomplish. It requires a synthetic universal perspective. What I mean by this is the antithesis of how easy it is for us to gain tunnel vision on the things we are working on. All throughout the design process it is important to maintain a healthy balance of what is important, and what is not. Often in my own work it isn’t until I realize I’m trying to force a circle into a square hole that I become successful in trying to solve the problem. Develop reason. Without reason how do you intend to make a particular decision? So by respecting the complexity of the design you are knowingly developing reason for your design choices. Design can be an extremely complicated subject, therefore by simply understanding you are addressing complicated subject matter (design) you are taking the first step in developing reason. Respect complexity. Nicely stated.
“Its not about over simplifying the complexity, its about managing it.” —Marty Maxwell Lane
It’s all about the experience
The most important thing I’ve (re)learned this year is that the greatest experiences in life aren’t designed at all. I’ve spent less time on blogs and Twitter and more time watching sunrises in beautiful places. I’ve obsessed less over gadgets and tools and more over finding the right wine to go with a great meal. I’ve remembered that I love my work more when it isn’t also my life. All of these things make me more patient, more optimistic, and more inspired…which can only make me better at what I do.
–Kim Goodwin, Author, Designing for the Digital Age
Something infinitely dense, in a vacuum, with nothing to compare its density to, is in fact not dense at all. Working continuously forever yields no progression. Cultural experiences are necessary for design. They allow for the evolution of ideas and the ability to make abstract connections, which in a vacuum would be impossible to discover.