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Looking at My Design Process Today | DesignNotes by Michael Surtees

Looking at My Design Process Today

My Design Process

Taking a step back from my everyday work, I thought it would be interesting to break out my design process when the ideal conditions are available. While it is pretty rare to have everything work out perfectly in terms of conditions when I started writing down some of the steps I was surprised that the word “design” isn’t part of the first five steps. Sure everything building up to that point is design but to not see the word till the end was interesting to me. I’ve also experienced being part of an agile development process in terms of building products—so how does that fit into things here? For me I think that’s we’re the design looping and the interchangeable nature of 2, 3, 4 and 5. Having the ability to work both forwards and backwards and understanding how that works is an important delineation of what I would have known to do a couple years ago. I also think the first step has an infinite number of options in terms of what “it is” that I’m trying to design. The quick and dirty response to what is design is that it is a problem solving exercise. While that is true on a number of different levels it doesn’t open things up as much as it could. Maybe we’re trying to increase something, maybe it’s the complete opposite and we’re trying to reduce something, maybe it’s making a more enjoyable experience (not necessarily a problem, but an improvement). As always this is just a work in progress that I take another look at in a couple months just to see if things change or stay the same.

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