3D illustration of iPhone showing healthcare app surrounded by floating pills
3D illustration of iPhone showing healthcare app surrounded by floating pills
Illustration by Shai Samana

Design has had a massive impact on the success of many organizations, especially tech companies. However, there are still plenty of sectors where design doesn’t have a seat at the table yet. Healthcare is one of them.

In healthcare, change isn’t embraced as much as in other industries. It comes more slowly, partly because it can have serious implications on the health of millions of people, and the user experience in some areas hasn’t changed in decades. Healthcare products also have the tendency to be very technical and scientific, and often don’t take the people interacting with systems or processes into account enough, from doctors to nurses to patients. …

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Typography on the web has come a long way. About a decade ago it was still woefully underused and done very poorly. Texts weren’t very readable online and the same typefaces were used over and over again. People were throwing their hands in the air, claiming you couldn’t do typography on the web well. But there’s one man that has been trying to convince people otherwise, and that man is Richard Rutter, co-founder of influential UX consultancy Clearleft. Now there’s a real surge of excitement about web typography, and he’s at the centre of it.

One of the biggest game changers right now is the advent of variable fonts, a technology that enables a single font file to behave like multiple fonts. “It’s really interesting how quickly this has come out of nowhere,” Rutter explains. “Adobe, Microsoft, Apple and Google have all thrown their collective weight behind variable fonts, and they all have their slightly different reasons. Google’s in particular will be one of performance because you can save an awful lot of space. If you deal with Chinese, Japanese and Korean languages in particular, font files will be a few megabytes in size as opposed to Latin-based font files, which are much smaller. You can radically cut down the size of these files, because you can have a regular and a bold wrapped up together. You’ve just got one font file for an infinite number of variations. It’s also going to be really interesting to see how type designers will provide stylistic variations in their fonts, that are really unusual and that we wouldn’t have seen before.” …

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Photo by Paul Clarke Photography

Sarah Richards created ‘content design’ at the UK Government Digital Service (GDS). Between 2010 and 2014, her team worked on making copy on public sector information website GOV.UK findable, usable and understandable. It was a massive, complicated project, based on user-centred design, which was unusual at the time— especially for governments.

She now runs Content Design London, a small eight-people agency providing training and consulting in content strategy and content design for
organisations around the world. She’s also written a book about the discipline that she created, aptly named Content Design.

“Content design is a way of thinking,” Sarah explains. “It’s about using data and evidence to give the audience what they need, at the time they need it and in a way that they expect.” …


Oliver Lindberg

Independent editor and content consultant. Founder and captain of @pixelpioneers. Co-founder and curator of www.GenerateConf.com. Former editor of @netmag.

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