The idea of human-centrism is blurry. Human complexity is too broad as a center point. Design for enhancing human ability can sharpen focus on human-centered design and connect products to a deeper human layer.

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The role of design is consequently evolving. From initially being a domain of communication with a predominant aesthetic focus design has taken a key role in the creation of products and has become a human advocacy. Design has moved into the C-Suite with the appointment of Chief Design Officers (CDO) while Design Thinking shifted the focus from technical to human solutions by advocating human-centrism.

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Human-centered design versus design for enhancing human ability

The idea to design for humans seems highly logical and easy to grasp. Everyone gets that, it’s about the human, it’s about designing for people.

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Human complexity is too broad as a center point

Yet, the idea of human-centrism is blurry in fact. Human complexity is too broad as a center point. We aim at the human but what part of the human domain needs to be addressed precisely? Is it about human desires, about human problems, about human activity? …


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Google Home and Amazon Echo

Yay, we killed Skeuomorphism!

Not too long ago humanity left behind its skeuomorphic interfaces. We became accustomed to the idea of buttons to tap on screens and swipes that moved content right or left. We learned that content could be out of view but within reach. We graduated to a flatter, more abstract representation that still inherits spatial metaphors and relationships but that are communicated more subtly and implicitly. We stripped our visual interfaces off their ornamentations to allow a more authentic approach to visual aesthetics.

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Skeuomorphism means using real world references and metaphors on interfaces to enhance their comprehensibility. …


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Design Thinking continues to be a hot topic (this article is one of many talking about it). Design Thinking has been hyped and even fetishized but there are also voices questioning its value, impact, and relevance. Design Thinking faces criticism for its lacking integration with business and compatibility with market reality. There are organizations that see Design Thinking as unnecessary rather than essential to driving organizational change and innovation. Does Design Thinking have to be reinvented or even replaced?

Here is why not.

The Misperception of Design Thinking

Design Thinking is being widely misunderstood. It is often associated exclusively with the design discipline or seen as a creativity tool that involves an enormous amount of post-its. …

About

Bert Brautigam

Interaction Designer @ Google

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