How to solve problems like a designer | Summary and Q&A

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September 21, 2017
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How to solve problems like a designer

TL;DR

IDEO, a product design consulting firm, initially created the Apple computer mouse and has since transitioned to designing complex systems and experiences.

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Key Insights

  • 🎨 IDEO's transition from product design to designing complex systems highlights the increasing importance of solving societal problems.
  • 😷 The design process involves observing the world, asking questions, generating ideas, prototyping, and iterating to create effective solutions.
  • πŸ‘― Testing and iterating designs is a crucial step to ensure that they meet people's needs and expectations.
  • 🎨 Collaboration and diverse perspectives are essential in designing complex systems that behave like systems instead of objects.

Transcript

This is the first Apple computer mouse. It came with Apple’s ten thousand dollar Lisa computer, and it was designed by a product design consulting firm that would eventually become known as IDEO. The assignment was straightforward: they had to take the computer mouse β€” a 400-dollar device at the time β€” and bring it down to under 35 bucks, make it m... Read More

Questions & Answers

Q: How did IDEO contribute to the development of the computer mouse?

IDEO was responsible for designing the first Apple computer mouse, making it more affordable, easy to produce, and reliable.

Q: Why did IDEO transition from product design to designing complex systems?

IDEO realized that complex systems, such as school systems, had more opportunities to impact society and solve pressing problems compared to individual products.

Q: What is the key step in the design process according to Tim Brown?

Tim Brown highlights that observing the world and asking interesting questions about human behavior is the first crucial step in the design process.

Q: How does IDEO ensure that a design meets people's needs?

IDEO uses prototyping and iteration, continuously testing and refining their designs, until they truly meet the needs of individuals or a group of people.

Summary & Key Takeaways

  • IDEO was tasked with creating a more affordable and simple computer mouse, leading to the development of the first Apple mouse.

  • Over the years, IDEO shifted its focus from product design to designing complex systems and experiences, such as voting systems and school systems.

  • The design process remains the same, involving observing the world, asking questions, ideation, prototyping, and iterating until the design meets people's needs.

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