Discoveries from #BWDesign2015

Snippets of conversations on the state of design and amazing design innovations in technology, healthcare and other industries

On Design Education…

Studio Tour @ Designer Fund with Enrique Allen and Ben Blumenfeld

How do we address the gap in design education? “Map industry needs with a curriculum”
Should we consider design ethics? “think how are these things supporting what users are really trying to do?”(Exercise: desconstruct a product, maybe a chromebook)
What’s design that has a meaningful impact? “It has depth, it’s addressing a fundamental habit that has been around for years”
A designer is a relentless learner — inspiring library @ Designer Fund! I’m glad there’s also books on writing and communication, which are critical for building products/services with teams. A recommendation in place of “Designing Obama” since on Amazon it’s over $900+, “Art Space Tokyo” :

Tim Brown, IDEO & Roger Martin, Martin Prosperity Institute

Can designers have a civic role in government? What would the Dodd-Frank act look like if it was created by designers?

25% of graduates in the US are in an MBA program
America produces 155,000 MBAs and about 1500 MFAs (huge disparity, we need MBA programs to be design oriented to move towards civic design)
@Autodesk Public Interest Design: Bringing the benefits of design to those who had little access to it with the goal of creating better spaces and places for people to have better lives.
Amazing projects led by different design studios

On the Future of Design…

Marco, Tempest, Cyber Illusionist, Director’s Fellow MIT Lab

Reading and imagining the future is half the battle, the other half is to start working on prototypes to show (not just tell) people the possibilities!

Future = Present + Magic (manipulate perception of the audience)

Shawn Douglas, Professor at UCSF

Slicing and cooking DNA to cure cancer


Jake Knapp, Design Partner, Google Ventures & Steve Cousins, Founder & CEO Savioke

Meet the Relay, a superhero robot who comes to the rescue at hotels next time you forget toothpaste and towels. He may not be Wall-E but he has eyes, a smooth surface and is nonviolent.

Simple laws:
(1) don’t hit anybody (2) don’t hit anything (3) don’t get lost (4) move gracefully (ballerina?) (5) ride the elevator

On Design Leadership…

Dolly Singh, founder and CEO, Thesis Couture & Garrett Reisman, Director of Crew Operations, SpaceX

You may have the brightest designers but are you sure you have the right team to build something amazing?

1. Framing your mission: The talent and energy you attact as a business will correlate directly to the complexity and intensity of your mission (aka — JFK promised to put a man on the moon). Framing your mission is the cirtical foundation upon which everything else is built.
2. Building teams that break boundaries: look across industries & products, hire for talent not skill
3. Designing from a clean slate: old paradigms block creativity, a clean, “first principles” approach shift paradigms & redefine your market

On Harmonic & Communication Design…

Shinola: Where America is Made

Daniel Caudill, Creative Director, Shinola

On creating a product that’s classic not trendy in the most unexpected city: Detroit.

“The hard things are done when the stakes are high”

Chip Kidd, Designer & Writer, Alfred A. Knopf

Book covers: Is a book really judge by its cover?
There are times when design should be clear or when it should be mysterious

Michael Bierut, Partner, Pentagram

viral communications: the sum being greater than the parts!

Robert Brunner, Founding Partner, Ammunition

“Don’t ask people to do too much, ask for small, simple steps”
“Build relationships with design and data” (←let’s nurture both the right/left side of the brain to understand this complex world)

Keep iterating and prototyping…until next year!


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