Thursday, July 26, 2007

Yahoo! Design Week: Product Design at Apple and Beyond

Bob Brunner on product design ...

"Former Director of Industrial Design at Apple Inc. and Pentagram partner, Bob Brunner, spoke at Yahoo! Design Week about his experiences with and perspective on product design principles and deliverables. Though most of Brunner’s talk was a walk through of product design examples, he also offered the following insights:

• Clients are what is going to help you be successful. You need to work with people you who believe what you believe in.
• There’s a lot of subjectivity in product design. People can produce a million reasons on a spreadsheet for why not to do something. Having someone (or a culture) that supports you is very important.
• A lot of the best clients are the ones that are in trouble. They need to change and therefore try something different or take risks.
• The Apple Powerbook design was not tested with customers –it just felt right. Some usability testing was done to ensure it could be used accurately. Virtually every notebook computer is modeled off the original Powerbook design.
• Brunner’s focus at Apple was developing a design language –a physical vocabulary of objects- across all products. Apple’s language was rooted in the desktop or office. They wanted to make it more personal: part of you vs. part of your desk.
• The design team needed to own design language and educate the rest of the company about it."    (Continued via Functioning Form)    [Usability Resources]

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