Monday, October 8, 2012

Video Responses

During our second project, we have been watching videos and learning about the design process within industrial design firms and industry. First, we watched the film, "Objectified" by Gary Hustwit and also an approx. 20 minute clip from ABC news about the company, IDEO.

{"Objectified: A Documentary Film"}
by: Gary Hustwit

The first film we watched as a class was "Objectified: A Documentary Film". You can watch a trailer of the movie here. This documentary film was really quite interesting, and I don't just say that from a designers standpoint. As a viewer of the film I was able to see inside the design process for large companies such as Apple and how the design process works. One of the big take-away facts I learned from the movie is that everything you use has been designed, but the products that are well-designed you don't even notice that they have been designed at all. That's how well designed they were. I also took some notes on other facts I learned from the movie, that I felt could help me become a better designer:
- A designer's job is to look at people's needs. Look at the extremes of people's needs, and the middle group will take care of itself.
- Industrial designers look at how an object effects the user (ex: for a potato peeler they look at where the pressure points are on your hand. Are these working? Does the design need to be changed to ease the user's hand?)
- look at design in a formal object, at symbolism, and in a big picture scenario
- goal as a designer: design products that will stand the test of time
- consumers need to demand that design is good
I was amazed at the intelligent design that goes behind the apple products, and there were so many things about my Apple laptop that I didn't even think of as being design, but instead I just think about them as being "perfect". It works so well and looks so good, I can tell Apple didn't over design it or over think it. They always make their products just right, in my opinion.

{ABC News broadcast: IDEO}
The second video we watched was an ABC News broadcast about a design company called IDEO, one of the most successful design companies in the world. You can watch the clip for yourself here. This clip really helped with the brainstorming process for our second project, because we are doing a version of this "deep-dive" brainstorming process that IDEO has come up with. In their office, they all work together rather than having one boss telling everyone else what to do because he "has the best ideas". Rather, they know everyone has great ideas and to get the best product they must compile them all together, filter through, and re-design the product that way. One of the biggest things I learned from this film was the power of brainstorming. During this broadcast the company was asked to redesign the shopping cart. Before anything, they came up with probably hundreds of ideas as a team of things that were wrong with the cart, ideas on how to fix these problems, and even new innovative ideas. But the brainstorming didn't stop there. They then broke up into teams and all brainstormed what their ideal re-design of the shopping cart would be. After trying all of these ideas out and working very hard they then presented prototypes to each other. These group prototypes then went into the making of the final prototype where they kept only the best ideas and put them into one cart. After it was all finished, they even took the final prototype into a grocery store and got some good response from the shoppers and workers at the store. This film was good to watch for how to go about re-designing our cutting board. The process of excessive brainstorming, prototyping, and re-prototying could only improve our design process within this second project. It was very insightful to see how this company made it work using different ideas that the "typical company" such as not having a boss figure, whoever has the best idea has the best idea rather than whoever has been at the company longest, and not working silently at a desk but rather with your hands and in a group setting.

Both of these films were quite interesting to inspire my design process, and I would recommend either, even to the non-designer.

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