All posts about
Design thinking

Design thinking isn’t user experience

Bounderies of labels can be fuzzy if you don’t know what you’re talking about.

“​Design thinking is everywhere, but definitions and interpretations vary. Is it a paradigm allowing you to “think like a designer?” A platform for creating innovation? A mindset you must shift into to design products? A process focused on bringing sketched ideas to life? Many believe it is the process that customer experience (CX) and user experience (UX) practitioners use to do their work, and by harnessing their approach, anybody can do CX or UX work. If nothing else, it’s a cottage industry offering endless training, workshops and certifications.”

Debbie Levitt a.k.a. /debbielevitt | @PtypeUX

Connectedland #2020

When all design disciplines are converging, why are there then so many design specialties.

“​Design disciplines are converging, as smart and autonomous product ecosystems increasingly blend human, digital and physical service experiences. (…) It’s time to revisit those considerations as design disciplines are converging, and that’s a great thing.”

Fabio Sergio a.k.a. /fabiosergio | @freegorifero

The power of critique: How to improve feedback on your team

Design critique, properly done the best feedback loop.

“​Giving each other helpful feedback is one of the most important parts of being a team. But many teams struggle to give each other feedback in productive ways. Thankfully, the design community has been absolutely obsessed with how to give each other feedback since the start of time.”

Braden Kowitz a.k.a. /kowitz | @kowitz ~ Range

A new model for the design thinking process

Design thinking process in many variations.

“​One way to frame the relationship between these two is that design properties describe the foundational structures on which design principles are hung. Or to use an analogy, properties are the basic rules of chess (how the board is set up, how the pieces move, etc.), and principles are the various strategies, play styles, and schools of thought.”

Yosef Shuman a.k.a. /yosefshuman | @aleafinwater ~ YosefsHuman.com courtesy of @peterboersma

A Design Thinking Mindset for Data Science

Thinking from a human perspective for data scientists.

“Data science has received recent attention in the technical research and business strategy since; however, there is an opportunity for increased research and improvements on the data science research process itself. Through the research methods described in this paper, we believe there is potential for the application of design thinking to the data science process in an effort to formalize and improve the research project process. Thus, this paper will focus on three core areas of such theory. The first is a background of the data science research process and an identification of the common pitfalls data scientists face. The second is an explanation of how design thinking principles can be applied to data science. The third is a proposed new process for data science research projects based on the aforementioned findings. The paper will conclude with an analysis of implications for both data science individuals and teams and suggestions for future research to validate the proposed framework.”

Rachel Woods ~ Towards Data Science

Teach Slower to Teach Better

But what’s the speed of learning and how to speed it up?

“Over the last decade, as a rejection to a tired model of higher education, new educational programs and structures have emerged. Many of these are in the fields of design, digital product development, and programming. The new models of education take many forms. Some are short day-long or week-long workshops. Some are meetups and brownbags. Some are online, some offline, and some hybrid. What connects many of these models is their immediate vocational emphasis. The majority intend to train practitioners, not academics. The focus is on preparing people to do design and get jobs. (…) We need educational innovation, but not at the expense of quality. Students need the space to develop problem solving strategies. Speed is not in our favor here. Let’s all slow down.”

Jon Kolko a.k.a /jkolko | @jkolko ~ modernist studio

Ten questions to designer Kees Dorst

Design thinker provides a context of (digital) design.

“It’s no news that the world is changing and it is changing fast. And change demands what designer Kees Dorst says to be a need to step back from old values so that we can create a new order. And it’s in this process that designers have a key role to play. At our Master’s programme’s headquarters, Dorst explained his theory in design framing and new thinking to an audience of students, professionals, and lecturers. After the event, Ben Schouten, scientific director of the Master’s programme in Digital Design, sat down with Kees Dorst to hear more about his thoughts on the designer of the future.”

Master Digital Design (Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences)

The divisiveness of Design Thinking

When places and spaces become too popular, the professionals redraw the map.

“In this article, I want to explore the split between the value of design thinking and the backlash, and see if there’s room to reclaim the value of this powerful way of working. Bear with the history lesson – it’s useful in seeing how design thinking has warped into something superficial.”

Jon Kolko a.k.a. @jkolko ~ ACM Interactions Magazine XXV.3

Connecting things: Broadening design to include systems, platforms, and product-service ecologies

Broadening the design scope leads to increase of complexity.

“Traditionally, design practice and design education have focused on giving form to physical things—apparel, buildings, messages, tools, and vehicles—the artifacts that constitute material culture. These artifacts are also the material of the traditional design disciplines—apparel design, architecture, graphic design, product design, and transportation design.”

Hugh Dubberly a.k.a. /hughdubberly ~ Dubberly Design Office courtesy of @freegorifero

Then and Now: The Bauhaus and 21st century design

The historical perspective on the Design dimension. The manifesto for a digital Bauhaus (Ehn, 1998) included?

“Design can address the critical problems of our age. The Bauhaus movement was of great historical importance. Today, we need more. Aristotle is considered of as one of the forerunners of the scientific movement, even as his actual words and writings of science and technology are completely ignored by today’s working scientists. That is how I feel about the Bauhaus movement: I am grateful for what it accomplished, but I do not find it relevant to the complex issues we face today.”

Donald A. Norman a.k.a. /donnorman | @jnd1er

Design Thinking is kind of like syphilis: It’s contagious and rots your brains

Always appreciate a good metaphore or analogy.

“Have you ever heard of Design Thinking? Your answer to that question will depend largely on where you sit in the world. The phrase Design Thinking is known almost universally in design circles. It’s made its way around networks of business hype more than once. Hell, the folks at Singularity University — a cult of technological utopians who hoover handfuls of vitamins and believe we’ll all upload our minds to servers in a few decades — think Design Thinking may be your ‘Secret Weapon for Building a Greater Good.’ No doubt, many others have also heard from people excited about Design Thinking — a state of being known as having a bad case of the DTs.”

Lee Vinsel a.k.a. @STS_News

Capturing the value of design thinking in different innovation practices

Happy twins? Design thinking and innovation.

“Design thinking has become a popular notion in the field of innovation. What is design thinking really and—even more important—what could be its value in applying it in innovation practices? This paper presents four studies that together capture the value of design thinking in different early-stage innovation practices. Study 1 comprised a literature review on design thinking to form the basis of an agreed domain of discourse for design thinking in innovation. In Study 2, this shared domain of discourse was validated. This shared domain of discourse provided the input for Study 3, which investigated how innovators apply design thinking in early-stage innovation practices. It shows that the application of design thinking is dependent on the innovator’s aim for the project, his or her vision on innovation, and the main challenge s/he is facing. This combination of characteristics is termed an image of design thinking. The images frame the application design activities in the context of the specific innovation project. Study 4 successfully validated the four images and shows that the combination of the images and the agreed domain of discourse can serve as a common language and a tool that allow capturing the value of design thinking in early-stage innovation.”

M. Kleinsmann, R. Valkenburg, and J. Sluijs ~ International Journal of Design (11.2)

To be a design-led company

Design as the primary organizational competence. I see John Maeda’s hand in this.

What got us here won’t get us there. I want to have design leading the way. A lot more user research. A lot more mockups.(…) Design as tactical driver: where design alters a discrete product, service, or communication effort. Design for system innovation: where design alters an existing system or creates a new one to deliver a better solution. Design as a catalyst for transformation: where design changes attitudes and behaviors of a community or organization.”

Ashleigh Axios a.k.a. /ashleighaxios | @AshleighAxios ~ A8C DESIGN

Design in the era of the algorithm

Perfect text for those involved in circle three of Maeda: Computational Design.

“The design and presentation of data is just as important as the underlying algorithm. Algorithmic interfaces are a huge part of our future, and getting their design right is critical—and very, very hard to do. My work has begun to turn to the responsible and humane presentation of data-driven interfaces. And I suspect that yours will, too, in very short order. While constructing these machine learning models is indeed heavy-duty data science, using them is not. Tons of these machine learning models are available to all of us here to build upon right now.”

Josh Clark a.k.a. /joshclark | @bigmediumjosh ~ big medium courtesy of @gnat

How using Design Thinking will fix Design Thinking

Nested concept, design thinking.

“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?”

Bert Bräutigam a.k.a. /bertbraeutigam | @bertbrautigam ~ The Next Web

Want to scale design thinking? Eight tips for embracing digital design collaboration

Scalability of design thoughts.

“Design is a top priority for companies that want to innovate and continue to improve the customer experiences. While many are investing in design thinking education, the distributed nature of teams makes it difficult for teams to practice, especially together. Ultimately, big initiatives to roll out design thinking as a core competence for all ‘knowledge and imagination workers’ have seen friction for both newly minted design thinkers and experts.”

Mariano Suarez-Battan a.k.a. /batmelon | @batmelon ~ O’Reilly Radar #Design