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Tim Brown On Current Design Challenges

timothy posted more than 11 years ago | from the equipment-with-tiny-black-on-black-text dept.

Technology 213

prostoalex writes "Tim Brown is the CEO of IDEO, design company that is quite famous for its work on designing office chairs, Palm computers, Microsoft mice, Nike shoes, etc. MIT Technology Review interviewed Tim Brown on current challenges in the design world, exciting fields for a designer to be in, current annoyances in the user interface design."

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First Naked Post!!!!! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6292980)

I am soooooooooooooo NAKED!!!!

Remember kids. With a naked post, you don't have to be first, you just have to be naked!!!! Which I am! Right now!

it's time to retire (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6292993)

I mean, I like Tim Brown. And Jerry Rice as well. But after the severe ass-kicking that the Bucs delivered in the Super Bowl I fear it *may* be time for the Black & Silver Assholes to rebuild.

What the hell are you talking about? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293007)

Sports? You do realize where you are, correct? Click this [espn.com] and don't ever come back here.

Re:What the hell are you talking about? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293028)

hey fuckwad. it's called humor.

Re:What the hell are you talking about? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293038)

Oh, so you've heard of it? By the looks of it, I didn't really think you have.

Re:What the hell are you talking about? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293241)

I can keep posting here longer then you. Let's go for longest flamewar thread about nothing. FUCKWAD.

Sports + slashdot moderators = Mod Down (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293062)

Especially since Gannon has to take out his dentures before the game. They have make a new rule... if you need a cane to walk around the field you cant use the cane to beat off blizting linebackers.

Anyway, its clear to me that the new dynasty is the Falcons... Get used to hearing this "VICK to PRICE for the touchdown!!" as well the old standby "VICK scrambles in for the touchdown!! He is a spectacular player and he has just beat the vikings!!!" LOLOLOL

Re:it's time to retire (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293084)

Nice one... Unfortunately, it is completely wasted on this crowd. Maybe you should have said "The Raiders presented by GNU" or something

Re:it's time to retire (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293129)

The only people who liked sports when I was in high school were the miserable assholes who made my life hell. They used to pants me in the locker room all the time and pile on top of me during gym when we'd play football. They used to take my glasses off and toss them around the room while I'd politely ask them to give them back to me. They used to threaten to "kill" me after school. Today, I spend time making their life hell now that I am a BOFH. "Can I have 3 more megs of space in my home dir?" Me: "Sure. (rm -rf /home/luser005/maildir ; mkdir /home/luser005/maildir ; chown luser005:users /home/luser005/maildir ; chmod 700 /home/luser005/maildir)" Hehehe... Most of those jock lusers became suits and don't have a clue of what I am actually doing on their systems either. When I leave here, or if I get fired, a few of the suits are going to be caught with kiddie pr0n. And a few of my lackies (paper MCSEs mind you) are going to be blamed for corporate espionage and destruction of evidence. Yes... it pays to be smart. That's a lesson the dumb jocks never learn.

Re:it's time to retire (1)

FroMan (111520) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293270)

It'd be easier to just:

rm -rf ~luser005/maildir/*

Save yourself from having to type so much. Atleast if you are going to mock MCSEs or what not, make sure you don't look like one.

Re:it's time to retire (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293324)

Ahhh but you forget... You need to make a maildir for them so they don't know what happened. Much more finesse than just having them call you back and say "WHERE'S MY MAIL DIRECTORY!!!??" Now they will call you back and meekly say, "Where's my mail?" Much more stylish.

Surprisingly, the NFL is well represented here (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293215)

In this article, we have Tim Brown. We had a Bill Romanowski post here. A Ben Coates used to post here frequently.

On the down side, A John Booty used to post here often. John Booty was one of Rich Kotite's defensive backs with the Eagles & Jets.

As an aside, I must really be getting old. When I saw the name "Tim Brown", I thought of the former Eagle, not the Raider.

i-Mode has nothing to do with design (5, Insightful)

xtal (49134) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293000)


The idea that people are going to use their mobile devices to do things like watch movies is just wrong. I think this is as the reason that the Japanese i-Mode has been so successfulâ"its applications are very small.


I'll agree using a cell phone to look at movies and pictures is stupid.

However, i-Mode services took off because anyone can easily make themselves an i-Mode application and have it run. Here, I am limited to very expensive applications and only ones that have been endorsed by my digital cell provider. Meaning that I have never so much as LOOKED at any of those features. I'm not going to spend a quarter to send a instant message. I'd balk at a nickel. I'll just call - I pay a flat fee for voice, to a point. Text uses a FRACTION of that bandwidth.

The phone companies want to be in the applications business, and so long as they control the content, these services are just a bad joke. That's the secret of i-Mode.

Re:i-Mode has nothing to do with design (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293092)

It appears that Tim Brown has actually managed to make the leap from the mess that was WAP in Europe two or three years ago. Basically it took a large, online medium (The web) and tried to just force it onto a mobile device. As he notes, it didn't work and no one wanted it. WAP is dead.

Seems as though the major 3G vendors in Europe could do with contracting Tim, though. All of them are desperate to push their mobile platforms as some sort of miniture web platform. But as Tim notes, do you really need or want to watch streaming video on a mobile? It seems that they are all so wrapped up in the technical side of things that someone forgot to ask the people they're trying to sell too.

My personal opinion is that 3G will fail to take off until the vendors drop all pretense of it being some sort of mini-web device and actually recognise that people do not want to watch a postage stamp sized weather report video.[1]

What do I know; I don't have billions of Euros in 3G licences I'm desperatly trying to claw back.

[1]: This is an actual advert from 3 here in the U.K. An example of a phone being used to watch a weather report. It looks very nice, sure, but what extra information does a little colour 3D map with clouds on offer instead of a spoken report?

Stupid 3G example from Notel (3, Interesting)

GGardner (97375) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293176)

actually recognise that people do not want to watch a postage stamp sized weather report video.

My favorite example of this is a Nortel ad that was running frequently last year. It had a guy who was going to be speaking at some big meeting, but forget his speech at the office. He used his mobile videophone to have his office assistant read it to him quietly, and he repeated it to the unknowing audience, with the phone sitting hidden on the lectern.

Now, what use is the live video in this case? I can get the same functionality today with my plain-old 2G phone (no video, of course). If you just need to repeat what someone is telling you over the phone, you sure don't need the live video. If this gee-whiz, look-how-cool-the-future-is example, unconstrained by reality, is the best 3G can do, isn't it in a whole heap of trouble?

3G is the feature creep personified (4, Insightful)

gilesjuk (604902) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293244)

All the adverts I've seen for 3G devices revolve around gimmics. Ooo look you can watch some video, you can phone your mates and have a laugh showing them things.

Currently 3G is an executive toy and needs a decent application. There are some instances where video calls could be very useful, doctors, police etc. but for the masses there has to be something that makes it worthwhile. Many people are happy with text messaging and instant messaging when online.

Re:3G is the feature creep personified (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293354)

In particular, there are two classes of advert. Smut, and Stupid. Any 3G advert you saw until very recently fit into either of those two catagories. A mutli billion Euro investment being sold on the basis of Smutty and Stupid. Quick, hire me that advertising agency!

As you say, 3G is an executive toy. In its current form it is the answer to a question nobody asked. An example I heard recently was from the CEO here at $WORK [1]. He was at a trade show, and came across a 3G vendor who was showing off their new toys.

"So what can this super video phone do then?" asks my boss.

"You can access streaming video!" enthused the sales person. The sales person then proceded to demonstrate the only video stream that was available at the time; a webcam which overlooked the their gravel driveway.

Hold me, I'm having palpatations!

I think secretly, the 3G vendors know they've fucked up, and bad style. You would have hoped that they would have learned after the abismal failure that was WAP, but no. You would have thought that they would understand why SMS is popular, and why video messaging will not be, but no. You would have hoped they would have a better way to justify billions of investors and share holders cash, but aparently not. Don't invest in any pure 3G vendors for a while..

[1]: Hence the AC.

Re:i-Mode has nothing to do with design (2, Insightful)

tgma (584406) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293116)

His point doesn't disagree with yours - the reason why i-Mode works is because people have been able to produce services for it that are different, and appropriate to the mobile platform.

TR: Are there historical parallels to this phenomenon?
BROWN: Sureâ"it's the whole horseless carriage scenario. Early cars looked like carriages, early TVs looked like radios. Every time somebody brings you something thatâ(TM)s new, it looks like the old thing. Itâ(TM)s only the second or third generation before it finally starts to look like the new thing.


The problem is that most of the firms producing both hardware and software for mobile applications are trying to force people to use handsets as though they are using a desktop. For instance, the browser on my P800 works fine, except that it's such a tiny window, it's a real pain to use for a site that has been designed to read in 800x640, or whatever. What would be good would be a browser that could work out what was interesting, and strip out all the rest. This is a nontrivial requirement though, and maybe I will just have to restrict my browsing to those sites that I know to be set up for my small screen.

For instance, I have an application that takes stock prices, and formats them for my screen, which is very useful. Now if someone could only do the same for sports scores...

Re:i-Mode has nothing to do with design (3, Interesting)

d99-sbr (568719) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293337)

What would be good would be a browser that could work out what was interesting, and strip out all the rest. This is a nontrivial requirement though, and maybe I will just have to restrict my browsing to those sites that I know to be set up for my small screen.

This is exactly what XML could be really useful for, in theory. In the best of worlds proper content markup would enable you to browse your material in whatever way you wanted.

Sadly, McLuhan's ideas makes this pure utopia. The medium and presentation greatly affect the content in most situations, which make machine interpretation of whats "interesting" extremely difficult. We're shooting at a very moving target.

An example: The New York Times is excellent to read from dead trees. It also transfers reasonably to high resolution screens, but as everybody knows, reading long articles online just isn't as pleasant. Now transferring it to my 1.25" cell phone screen just isn't gonna cut it at all. Too many words, too little information.

The only papers that have been even remotely successful in going WAP here in Sweden are the tabloids. They write short pieces that convert well into a handful of WAP cards. Oops, there I go rambling again.

Re:i-Mode has nothing to do with design (2, Interesting)

winksite (684458) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293273)

I work at a company that has built a product that is micro designed to work on mobile phones and other devices via the mobile Internet. The challenges are quite amazing, because, as we know, the web doesn't fit well on a 1" by 1" screen, or even a little bit larger. There are also a host of other issues that need to be addressed, and the challenges mount. But, I believe, we have come up with a successful solution that is device indenpendant and network agnostic. You can visit the Beta of this product at http://www.winksite.com If you have a wap-enabled phone, just go to winksite and try it out from there. We are a start-up with domestic and international patent pending technology that is welcomes feedback. PS: I believe i-Mode is a culture, a way of life. I visited NTT DoCoMo's booth at CeBit the other day, and it was #%$@#ing cool. 'Tude was everything.

Cool! This guy works down the street from me... (1)

Burz (138833) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293011)

I've often wondered what IDEO was.

Re:Cool! This guy works down the street from me... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293032)

Now you know. Make sure you subscribe to /. so that you gain other valuable nuggets of information.

Re:Cool! This guy works down the street from me... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293048)

They're like IKEA, but they don't actually sell the stuff...

Re:Cool! This guy works down the street from me... (3, Funny)

Salamander (33735) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293115)

Heh. Same here. Why, just this morning I was making the turn onto Maguire, and I was thinking "what is the natural nickname for people who work at IDEO, anyway?" I don't think they'd appreciate the answer I came up with.

Re:Cool! This guy works down the street from me... (1)

tgma (584406) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293134)

IDEOlogues - I'm sure that's what you had in mind, wasn't it?

Or was it IDEOsyncratics?

Re:Cool! This guy works down the street from me... (1)

LordNimon (85072) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293184)

IDEOts?

Make Ergonomics Open Source! (5, Funny)

Lieutenant_Dan (583843) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293014)

I think that the designs implemented could be further enhanced by having the blueprints and patents available to the Open Source developer community. Their dedication and strict attention to detail would allow these corporations to tap into new markets.

We must consider what the impact on the global market that these products will have. Will they be able to reduce the inflation while increasing the gross national product? Only with a strong currency can a country have a voice.

By communication with its neighbors, any country can forge alliances and trade agreements that increase its population's well-being. Their health is one valuable asset when one wants to compete against some of the established powers.

Medical progress in turn will be accelerated by the sharing the knowledge and a strong investement in R&D. Only then can we liberate the world from all the ails and diseases.

So in summary, if the patents are made open source, we can probably find a cure for cancer.

Re:Make Ergonomics Open Source! (1)

kajod_kaka (682015) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293056)

Why has this been modded "Interesting"? Sheesh, where's your sense of humor, people?

Re:Make Ergonomics Open Source! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293089)

And not just one, but two moderators fell for this troll/humor posting! lol

Re:Make Ergonomics Open Source! (-1, Redundant)

Lord Kholdan (670731) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293068)

Why should I waste my money and time to research something if I'm not going to make $ with it?

That goes double for businesses.

Re:Make Ergonomics Open Source! (1)

abe ferlman (205607) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293179)

Why should I waste my money and time to research something if I'm not going to make $ with it?

That must have been what Salk was thinking when he said that patenting the polio vaccine would be like patenting the sun. He probably thought "Why did I lead this comfortable University researcher life and eliminate this scourge from humanity when I could have cashed in for the big $$$?!"

Re:Make Ergonomics Open Source! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293216)

Myself and my beard agree. Patents and Copyrights are an abhorant process that is designed to maintain the status quo, vis. a vis. a heriditary merotocracy of information hording individuals. This is an afront to any civilized society, yet the situation remains and indeed is perpetuated throughout the generations.

In an attempt to remedy this situation, I have single handedly created the GNU General Patent Licence. This licence can be used, quite literally, to turn a patent on its head, giving everyone but the patent holder the rights to leverage the information within the patent, and charge royalties from the patent holder. Using a loophole in existing laws, the GNU General Patent Licence can be applied by any person, living or dead to any existing, past or future patent at any time. I myself have recently licenced the Fruenhoffer MP3 and Amazon One-Click methods as a test of the GNU General Patant Licence in fact.

I, the almight RMS, urge all of you (Even Redhat GNU/Linux users!) to spread the use of the GNU General Patent Licence far and wide! Together, we can end world hunger, cure cancer, and bring peace to the United States of America! Join me!

Yours patently

RMS & beard

I thought you were Malda at first (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293240)

Myself and my beard agree.

Sounds like Malda & Fent.

Irony (1)

CrazyJim0 (324487) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293344)

I don't think ergonomics is holding us back.

I do like the other idea, that a cancer in society is preventing a cure for cancer in our bodies.

That is divine irony.

Re:Make Ergonomics Open Source! (1)

Sven Tuerpe (265795) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293371)

So in summary, if the patents are made open source, we can probably find a cure for cancer.

That's a tautology. Of course we wouldn't need as many lawyers then.

Tim Brown? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293017)

Man, he's been Mr. Clutch for the Raiders for years. Truly a class act - unfortunate he has to play for a classless owner in Al Davis.

PEACHES (-1)

cmdr_shithead (527909) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293018)

i ** no!

Feature Creep (4, Insightful)

Lothar (9453) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293019)

"Well, one big problem is feature creep. Companies feel pressured to add features, because they want to put a check mark in every check box in the product review magazines"

That seems to be true anywhere these days. Feature creep is at least as bad when it comes to software.

Microsoft Mice? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293025)

Intellimouse = biggest waste of my money, ever. I've blown through 3 of them, and one of the times, the woman on the phone at M$ had suggested I had a "stolen" mouse, because the Product ID wasn't authentic.

I laughed and told her I don't buy my mice from shady men on the street. Yay @ crappy story.

Re:Microsoft Mice? (1)

FroMan (111520) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293322)

I learned after the first one died bud. Maybe you should notice a pattern.

The MS Intellimouse I had was for work, which would just plain ol' shut off at random times (usually when compiling). What a peice.

Logitech if you want a decent mouse. I haven't had an issue with one of those at all.

Logitech, my friend. (1)

intermodal (534361) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293376)

I still own a working TrackMan trackball mouse from roughly 1993, and my present most-used mouse is a Logitech MX300. No problems here. I've heard even linux zealots talking about how their "MS Mouse works fine". Nevermind the fact that they're low-resolution, bulky, and prone to having problems with gathering dirt on the pads that actually touch the desk (I'm talking primarily from my experience at my last job, where every mouse was an optical intellimouse explorer except the Logitech I found at the desk of someone who had left the company and put on my own computer). It's a shame they're so common, because they really are poor mice.

I think the biggest problem is that people assume that just because it's optical it must be good.

IDEO designs? (2, Informative)

Surak (18578) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293027)

Well, first off, these guys only designed the original Microsoft "dove bar" mouse, none of the current designs. Other designs include the [ideo.com] and of course the Palm V, which is looking a bit tired these days. Interestingly enough they also designed the Handspring Treo and the the Handspring Edge. [ideo.com]

Their design philosophy makes sense, but doesn't always lead to good designs. IMHO, the Microsoft Dove Bar mouse was one of the worst designs as it had a lot of usability problems -- the buttons (esp. the big one) were notorious for sticking, and the odd differently sized left and right buttons left much to be desired.

Re:IDEO designs? (1)

UnknowingFool (672806) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293349)

the buttons (esp. the big one) were notorious for sticking

That may not be within IDEO's realm. The sticking may be a functional problem. IDEO created the outside design, but they did not engineer the inside of mouse. Maybe MS incorrectly designed the spring mechanism or picked cheap parts for button.

Design Challenges Part 2 (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293036)

How is this for a comparison?

Number of CDs to install Redhat 9 : 3 CDs
Number of CDs to install Windows XP : 1 CD

So you tell me... which is bloated and slow? I wonder which one comes with 7 different "control panel/configure/customize" apps? Which one still doesn't have drivers for DLink wireless cards? Which one still doesn't support MS Office?

Sorry folks, but Linux has years to go before it hits the mainstream. Unfortunately, years from now, Longhorn will be out and it's back to the drawing board for the open sores community...

Re:Design Challenges Part 2 (1)

CrazyWingman (683127) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293076)

The Redhat discs come with programs other than just "Redhat" (i.e. KDE, Gnome, Apache, Emacs, Perl, etc. - although I haven't taken a look at the actual content in a while, so one or more of these may be wrong). What does Windows XP come with? IE, minesweeper, wordpad, solitaire, some screensavers. Bah!

Re:Design Challenges Part 2 (1)

kajod_kaka (682015) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293079)

Number of CDs to install RedHat 9 = 3 Number of CDs to install WinXP + OfficeXP + IIS + MS Visual Studio + ..... = 15 gazillion. Your point?

Re:Design Challenges Part 2 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293218)

Actually, 3. Windows XP (1), Office (1), VS.Net (1 DVD).

And gazillion is a word not frequently used in technical terms by grown-ups.

Re:Design Challenges Part 2 (1)

arkanes (521690) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293257)

It's actually.... 3. One for each product. (Well, okay. Newest version of VS is more than 1 CD, but you can use just 1 if you don't want to install the MSDN collection)

"current annoyances in the user interface design" (0)

yatest5 (455123) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293045)

KDE, Gnome?

..a pretty neat idea. (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293047)

The other classic example is digital watches, where the cost of adding extra features is so low, that you end up with all these features through this incredibly low bandwidth interface that nobody can ever remember.

Insert Douglas Adamas joke here.

Network Selection (4, Insightful)

BigBadBri (595126) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293049)

"Iâ(TM)d want my tablet or my PDA or maybe even my phone to use the best network available wherever it is. So if Iâ(TM)m in my office, I donâ(TM)t want to be using the cell network, I want to be using WiFi, because I can get ten times the bandwidth that way. But as soon as I walk out of my building, I donâ(TM)t want to have to say: OK, Iâ(TM)m flipping from one to another. For this to happen, service providers like Verizon would have to say: we're going to manage you your experience, whatever network that youâ(TM)re on."

Why expect the network to handle this?

The OS should be able to monitor WiFi signal strength, retried packets, etc., and make the decision to switch to the mobile network automatically.

And a periodic retry of the WiFi network isn't going to cost the earth, in processing or in battery life.

The more things change . . .. (5, Interesting)

vizualizr (462581) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293051)

I have absolutely no expertise in interface design, and almost as little REAL expertise in hard-core technology, but I am a designer by profession; I'm a Landscape Architect - mostly designing neighborhoods, resorts, and other places where we live out our day to day lives.

One challenge we face in the design projects I'm involved with that I'm fairly certain translates to the kind of design Brown talks about is the "lowest common denominator" problem. We can design some public plaza space or neighborhood that is absolutely award-winning, and on the cutting edge of the design world. The problem is, we often have to (at our client's direction) water our design down to something that the average Joe can understand.

The general populace tends to be slow to accept radical changes to familiar things like the way a suburban street or a park feels. They have an expectation that has built up over several years, and things that are different (and often much, much better) seem strange, and are sometimes rejected outright. We fear change. Change is bad. The same is often true for things like community zoning boards (made up of average Joe, average Bill, and average Jane).

Its an interesting problem, and the major challenge for us is to keep our designs current and progressive without succumbing to the temptation to just arbitrarily "dumb down" our work.

Re:The more things change . . .. (5, Insightful)

pubjames (468013) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293161)

The general populace tends to be slow to accept radical changes to familiar things like the way a suburban street or a park feels. They have an expectation that has built up over several years, and things that are different (and often much, much better) seem strange, and are sometimes rejected outright. We fear change. Change is bad. The same is often true for things like community zoning boards (made up of average Joe, average Bill, and average Jane).

I'm sorry but this demonstrates an aspect of designers that I find somewhat annoying. If you are designing for the average Joe, Bill and Jane, and they aren't happy with your designs, it's your fault, not theirs.

It's like when I'm working on a piece of multimedia/website with a graphic designer and they come up with some original concept that the client rejects on practical grounds -- the designer goes into a big huff and thinks the client is stupid.

Some designers always tend to think their ideas are the best in the world. Really good designers design what people want and are humble about it. Some designers seem to think that because they can come up with original ideas they are in some way "brilliant", but there are a lot of people with a lot of good ideas and good ideas are not restricted to designers. As my old boss used to say, "ideas are cheap".

(Sorry if this comes over a bit strong. I don't really mean this as an attack on you personally, it's just one of my pet peeves.)

Re:The more things change . . .. (2, Insightful)

stubear (130454) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293289)

"Really good designers design what people want and are humble about it."

No, account managers give the client what they want. Designers try to give the client what they need to effectively communicate the message. Sometimes the two don't mix, particularly if you work with a client who feels the need to be creative themselves and art direct the piece. Designers are brought on as consultants, amongst other things, not pixel monkeys paid to make "kewl" photoshop effects. We understand color, pacing and composition in ways the average person can't, though they "get it" when the message is effectively communicated.

(Sorry if this comes over a bit strong. I don't really mean this as an attack on you personally, it's just one of my pet peeves.)

Re:The more things change . . .. (1)

pubjames (468013) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293346)

No, account managers give the client what they want. Designers try to give the client what they need to effectively communicate the message.

Ah. So designers don't try give their client what they want? Sorry that was something I had failed to understand. Now I am enlightened.

Of course, most clients are stupid. Tusk! Clients, hey? Who need 'em?

Typical arty bollocks (2, Insightful)

spakka (606417) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293172)

We can design some public plaza space or neighborhood that is absolutely award-winning, and on the cutting edge of the design world. The problem is, we often have to (at our client's direction) water our design down to something that the average Joe can understand.

What is there to not 'understand' about a public plaza, even for an 'average Joe'? Or, do you just mean that most people dislike your designs?

Re:Typical arty bollocks (1, Funny)

jonathan_ingram (30440) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293210)

He's probably a designer in the 1970s mould -- those who gifted my home town (Birmingham, in the UK) with innumerable pustules of architecture in 'hunt the entrance' concrete form.

Re:The more things change . . .. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293190)

You sound unhappy. You should move to a town populated exclusively by above-average intellectuals like yourself where your work can finally be appreciated.

After all, why design for the salt of the earth and -- ye gods!! -- the "general populace" when you can design for effete snobs?

Good luck, bro! Hang in there!

(Of course, the real irony here is that those poor schlubs with their briefcases getting off the commuter trains and into their SUV's look across at you and your crew adjusting the marigolds in front of the station and pity those poor gardeners who have to work outside in the heat and dirt. Funny world, ain't it?)

Re:The more things change . . .. (4, Insightful)

Salamander (33735) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293200)

Reading your post, the phrase "too clever by half" comes to mind. If the client doesn't want some avant-garde artsy design, you should know that up front; if you're overshooting their design comfort level and then having to "water it down" you're wasting their time and money. The problem is, everyone who studies design wants to be on the cutting edge, but there's really only room for 10% (at most) to be there; the rest should get used to working on less exciting projects unless/until they can prove that they deserve to be one of the few who get to do the good stuff. It's the same as in programming - a few get to strike out in bold new directions, the rest earn their stripes by making derivatives or lesser enhancements.

It's not about people thinking change is bad. You only say that because you want to be the one making the changes, and I suspect you'd seem just as conservative about unasked-for "screwing around with stuff" in areas outside your own specialty. Do you use any software? How would you like it if the entire UI changed, just because someone thought they had a better idea? How about if your ZIP code or telephone area code kept changing, just because someone came up with a more "logical" way to assign them? If some traffic designer had the "bright idea" to make some of the streets in your neighborhood one-way, would you just say "cool, change is good"? Hmmm. What this is about is balancing change with consistency. Too bad if that leaves you frustrated because there aren't enough opportunities to do what you want to do.

Re:The more things change . . .. (1)

FroMan (111520) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293380)

I have absolutely no expertise in interface design, and almost as little REAL expertise in hard-core technology, but I am a designer by profession; I'm a Landscape Architect - mostly designing neighborhoods, resorts, and other places where we live out our day to day lives.

So, its your fault one neighbor is looking into his neighbor's bathroom while brushing his teeth. Here's a hint. Put more than 10 feet between houses in your neighborhoods.

</rant>

Computer interfaces (5, Interesting)

pubjames (468013) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293057)

I really wish someone would give these guys a pile of cash to redesign computer GUIs. I can't be the only one that is sick of the slow pace of development of computer interfaces. We really haven't progressed much since the work of Xerox Park.

What we need are some designers - who are not technies or nerds - to sit down and completely redesign the interface from scratch. Forget the "windows" metaphor, forget "icons" and clicking with the mouse - really start from first principals.

If you've ever sat down with someone who hasn't used a computer much and watch them struggle to do the simplest things, you'll understand how bad current GUIs are. The trouble is people that use computers are so used to their bad design that they fail to notice it. For example, when I press the on button, I want it to turn on. Instantly. I don't want to have to wait several minutes for it to "warm up" like the old TVs used to. And when I press the off button, I want it to turn off. Instantly. And if I press the on button again, I want to see the same stuff on the screen as when I last switched it off. And that's just the functionality of the on-off button!

It's 2003 for christsakes. Why am I still using an interface that was designed in the 1970's, when computers had a tiny fraction of the power and functionality they currently have?

Re:Computer interfaces (3, Insightful)

hoagieslapper (593527) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293083)

A computer will never be truely user freindly until it under stands plain spoke words and gives us what we want, not what we asked for.

Since most of us do ot really know what we want, a truely user freindly interface is a myth.

Re:Computer interfaces (4, Funny)

skaffen42 (579313) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293199)

A computer will never be truely user freindly until it under stands plain spoke words and gives us what we want, not what we asked for.

Dude, you just described my relationship with my ex-girlfriend! I thought we were incompatible, but now I realize she just wasn't user friendly enough!

Re:Computer interfaces (1)

pubjames (468013) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293277)

A computer will never be truely user freindly until it under stands plain spoke words and gives us what we want, not what we asked for.

Sorry, but that's just bol**cks. Try subsituting anything else in there:

A car will never be truely user freindly until it under stands plain spoke words and gives us what we want, not what we asked for.

A telephone will never be truely user freindly until it under stands plain spoke words and gives us what we want, not what we asked for.

etc.

You seem to be suggesting that it is impossible to create a user friendly interface unless uses plain speech. Have you got a wife/girlfriend? ;-)

User friendly does not equal requiring a speech interface.

And a car..... (1)

oliverthered (187439) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293343)

I think your wrong.

Does a car need to understand plain spoken words to get us where we want.
Perhaps the interface and marketing need to be redesigned to show computers as something that require a little effort, they are not like a genie in a lamp.

Re:Computer interfaces (1)

kajod_kaka (682015) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293102)

when I press the on button, I want it to turn on. Instantly. I don't want to have to wait several minutes for it to "warm up" like the old TVs used to. And when I press the off button, I want it to turn off. Instantly. Last I checked, that was a technology issue rather than an interface design issue.

Re:Computer interfaces (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293158)

That's a false dichotomy. Any aspect of the user's interaction with the computer is an interface design issue, and how long the user has to wait for the computer to turn on is certainly part of the user experience.

Re:Computer interfaces (2, Informative)

Dot.Com.CEO (624226) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293187)

The feature you are talking about exists in Windows 2000 and Windows XP. It is called hybernating and works marvelously. I don't know what the state of affairs is in Linuxland but last time I checked there was no such feature.

I have mapped the on off button on the case of my pc to the hybernate function for the few times I turn it off to minimise the noise in the office. It takes about 5 secs from pressing the button to turn it on to a perfectly functioning Windows desktop, fully loaded. Most of the 5 seconds are BIOS checking and checking for CD-ROMs to boot from... Not bad at all...

Re:Computer interfaces (1)

pubjames (468013) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293203)

The feature you are talking about exists in Windows 2000 and Windows XP. It is called hybernating and works marvelously.

Well, I have a new desktop with Windows XP and it doesn't function like that.

I have mapped the on off button on the case of my pc to the hybernate function

Ahh, I see... I can really see the average Joe doing that.

Re:Computer interfaces (1)

josh crawley (537561) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293287)

Start>Settings>Control Panel. Power Options (In Win2K). Advanced Tab. "When I Press the Power Button on My Computer..." If Hibernate is not an option, click on the Hibernate tab and enable it.

I don't see how this can be made much easier.

Re:Computer interfaces (1)

arkanes (521690) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293321)

It's perfectly accessible to average Joe - maybe not Joe's grandma, though. Power settings. If you're on a laptop (where it's more common to want to do this) you can access it via the battery icon in the systray.

On the other hand, there's been alot of training and design effort to keep people from using the power button on thier PC to turn them off - you're suppose to use shut down. And if you do THAT, the hibernate/suspend/etc are right there in front of you.

In any case, the main reason computers don't work like this is a technology issue, not a UI issue, as the grandparent mentioned.

Re:Computer interfaces (1)

jldrew (629581) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293372)

The feature you are talking about exists in Windows 2000 and Windows XP. It is called hybernating and works marvelously. I don't know what the state of affairs is in Linuxland but last time I checked there was no such feature.

I haven't tried this, but it seems reasonable that one could use xmodmap and showkey to map any keyboard button to `apm -s` (suspend to ram) or `apm -S` (suspend to disk). (Provided that your BIOS is new enough to handle that sort of thing.)

I think those features have been available on any average Linux distribution for a while (at least a year or two... I haven't been keeping track).

Re:Computer interfaces (1)

BenjyD (316700) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293151)

In other words, make desktop PCs behave like PDAs do. I think that the expected behaviour of computers by non-tech-literate people is similar to a PDA - it 'just works', powers up instantly etc.

I guess you could do something similar to the Palm - low-power refresh of the DRAM while the unit is off. I'm not sure of the power requirements for keeping 512mb of DRAM refreshed, though.

Re:Computer interfaces (1)

cpt kangarooski (3773) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293384)

I think that it must be pretty low. I have one of the Abit IC7-G motherboards, and it can be set up to shut down everything but RAM. Even the PSU turns itself off when it's in this mode. But when you turn it back on, it restarts, everything back where you left it, in a flash. (though it does have to reestablish network connections) Non-volatile RAM would also be a solution; the old core-memory computers were like that.

"Park"?? (1)

sczimme (603413) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293223)


We really haven't progressed much since the work of Xerox Park.

If you are going to try to use a historical reference, at least get it right: it was the Xerox PARC, as in Palo Alto Research Center.

(I know, it's off-topic, but I find it annoying when people try to make references like this to show their old-school-itude. These are the same ones that use "CARRIER LOST" to show their 1337 BBS skillz. Bah.)

Re:"Park"?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293235)

If you are going to try to use a historical reference, at least get it right: it was the Xerox PARC

Sorry sir! You are right sir! I will try harder sir!

Re:Computer interfaces (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293243)

"For example, when I press the on button, I want it to turn on. Instantly. I don't want to have to wait several minutes for it to "warm up" like the old TVs used to. And when I press the off button, I want it to turn off. Instantly."

This has much more to do with hardware than the GUI. If the hardware could dump all memory to disk 'instantly', and read it back at boot time it would be possible. The hibernate feature of many os's does what you're describing, it just isn't instant.

Re:Computer interfaces (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293305)

"more to do with hardware than the GUI"

Like the iPod. Some guy gets all the credit for `designing` it. He just put someone elses well designed/written soft/hardware in a box. Big deal.

Re:Computer interfaces (1)

pubjames (468013) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293318)

This has much more to do with hardware than the GUI. If the hardware could dump all memory to disk 'instantly', and read it back at boot time it would be possible. The hibernate feature of many os's does what you're describing, it just isn't instant.

And why the f**k do I, Joe User, care about that? That a problem that needs to be solved. If car designers thought that way people would still be using starting handles to start their car engines.

The biggest unasked question (1)

Strange Ranger (454494) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293249)

> TR: How does technology influence design?...
TR: What's wrong with product design nowadays?


How can we get design to have more of an influence on developing technologies?

Rather than the inverse as they ask it. Of course that's easy to ask, HARD to answer.

Re:Computer interfaces (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293298)

"Itâ(TM)s 2003 for christsakes. Why am I still using an interface that was designed in the 1970â(TM)s, when computers had a tiny fraction of the power and functionality they currently have?"

Because all of that extra power is being used to display the kind of eye-candy that designers churn out.

Re:Computer interfaces (2, Insightful)

His name cannot be s (16831) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293308)

Hang on a minute here...

Humans are learning creatures. Machines are simply that--Machines.

It is far simpler to have a human adapt to an interface than to attempt to build the ultimate interface that would be universally accepted.

By creating a system that is abstracted from reality (windows/desktop/icons) allows us all common ground, as there is no real example of this sort of thing in the real world anyway.

Heck, the mouse and the keyboard are both *arbitrarily* designed devices. Each it built to perform a purpose, but unlike anything else. I've learned to use them effectively, as have most people. This trend is growing too. Younger people adapt quicker and quicker, and don't need the kind of training that folks did 20 years ago.

Another example of this: Newton vs Palm.

The Newton tried to understand and learn from the human. The Palm had grafitti--You were forced to learn it's dialect of writing. You know what? Millions learned grafitti, even "non-techies". My wife, learned grafitti in about an hour, and can really rock writing on a palm. The Netwon never really caught on, in part due to it's handwriting recognition skills.

In reference to your instant on. Computer already have this. Use sleep mode instead of the power button. You'll get your instant on without the wait.

I for one, do not wish to "start from scratch". I'm happy with the progression of today's desktops, and In *my* opinion, we've skyrocketed past the simple concepts from Xerox PARC (That's PARC not Park. Palo Alto Research Center).

Trust me, if you have ever used the fruits of the original technology, you would understand some of the differences.

Re:Computer interfaces (1)

Mogomra (654796) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293311)

It's 2003 for christsakes. Why am I still using an interface that was designed in the 1970's, when computers had a tiny fraction of the power and functionality they currently have?

I don't see why this necessitates changing an interface. We still use steering wheels and gas and and brake pedals in our cars, and that interface is nearly a hundred years old. Works fine, don't you think?

Re:Computer interfaces (2, Interesting)

Sven Tuerpe (265795) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293328)

I really wish someone would give these guys a pile of cash to redesign computer GUIs. I can't be the only one that is sick of the slow pace of development of computer interfaces. We really haven't progressed much since the work of Xerox Park.

What you will get is a computer with a color screen and a pointer device, windows, icons, and menus. What we know as computers today is a result of years of evolution. There is not much potential for radical change unless there is a radical change in the way computers work and interface with the real world. What is more likely to happen is more specialization of devices. Cellphones, digital cameras, etc. are besically computers but easier to use because the particular device is designed for some particular pupose(s). Universal computers supporting word processing as well as online brokerage, Java programming as well as image processing, and gaming as well as spamming, are different from that. They do, of course, not fit any particular purpose outstandingly well but that's a feature and not a design bug.

Also, the WIMP approach represents a canonical solution to the lower levels [useit.com] of interaction. Mice and windows help you to express what you want to do as soon as you what you have to do in order to achieve your goal at hand. They do help you to format text in a word processor but they don't tell you how typesetting works and how to produce a nice looking and readable document. Teaching higher level concepts through user interfaces indeed is a problem largely unsolved, but replacing mice and windows with radically different [nooface.com] won't solve it either, at least not for general purpose devices.

If you've ever sat down with someone who hasn't used a computer much and watch them struggle to do the simplest things, you'll understand how bad current GUIs are.

Es dauert Jahre, eine Fremdsprache oder eine andere nichttriviale FÃhigkeit halbwegs zu lernen. Warum sollten Computer ohne jeden Lernaufwand zu benutzen sein? (It takes several years to learn to some extent a foreign language or any other non-trivial skill. Why do you think computers could be usable without any effort learning them?) Sure, it would be nice if they were but don't you expect too much here? Is your assessment of the current situation even correct? As a matter of fact, a lot of people is able to use current computers. It takes them time learning what they can do with their machines and how to do it but they do send and receive e-mail, surf the Web, and make friends online. And they achieve much more than just watching kind of interactive TV this way.

Get real, the revolution you are asking for will have to wait until the Holodeck(TM) has been invented, or Direct Brain Access(R).

Re:Computer interfaces (1)

stubear (130454) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293332)

"Forget the "windows" metaphor, forget "icons" and clicking with the mouse - really start from first principals."

Why do people always suggest we dump the WIMP metaphor as if it's some insightful, intellegent suggestion? Do you not realize that not only would the GUI have to change, the hardware would too. WIMP developed from the use of the mouse and keyboard, not the other way around. We don't need a revolition in the way the GUI functions using the mouse and keyboard, we need a revolution in the way information is stored, processed and retrieved so the user has to do as little as possible to recall their data. Why should I remember the tree hierarchy of the last three projects I worked on? Why can't I easily assign an e-mail to a current illustration I'm working on so the next time I recall the project I not only see the illustratrion, I have easy access to the e-mail that describes the specs or changes to the project? I could go on and on but the point is we need to change the way the computer interacts with us, not the way we interact with the computer.

Please, stay on one topic. (3, Informative)

gosand (234100) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293367)

What we need are some designers - who are not technies or nerds - to sit down and completely redesign the interface from scratch. Forget the "windows" metaphor, forget "icons" and clicking with the mouse - really start from first principals.

Not going to happen. That is like asking Alexander Graham Bell to design a cell-phone. You have to go in with knowledge about the function of a product. If not you either get something that looks great but doesn't do anything, or a single-purpose device. Computers are neither of those.

If you've ever sat down with someone who hasn't used a computer much and watch them struggle to do the simplest things, you'll understand how bad current GUIs are. The trouble is people that use computers are so used to their bad design that they fail to notice it.

I have, and it is frustrating for everyone. But is it the design that is wrong, or the person? My mom didn't know anything much about computers until a year or two ago. She still struggles with the interface. My 8 year old neice picked it up very quickly. Don't blame the interface when the problem might be in the mind of the user. After all, in another generation there won't be anyone alive who remembers when there weren't computers.

For example, when I press the on button, I want it to turn on. Instantly. I don't want to have to wait several minutes for it to "warm up" like the old TVs used to. And when I press the off button, I want it to turn off. Instantly. And if I press the on button again, I want to see the same stuff on the screen as when I last switched it off. And that's just the functionality of the on-off button!

This is functionality, not design. Yeah, this would be a nice thing, but it has nothing to do with the interface design. You have to wait for the hardware behind the curtain to catch up to this idea. So you want a big, embedded computer. We'll probably get there some day, but it has nothing to do with UI design.

It's 2003 for christsakes. Why am I still using an interface that was designed in the 1970's, when computers had a tiny fraction of the power and functionality they currently have?

Umm, because the interface doesn't rely on the power and functionality of the device? So which is it? You want a super-powerful, multi-function computer that is instant-on that everyone intuitively knows how to operate? Gee, anything else? Maybe we could fit them on the head of a pin too. How about infinite storage?

I am all for forward thinking, but let's put a little more emphasis on the thinking part.

Apple? (3, Interesting)

peterprior (319967) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293061)

I would be interested to see what this guys opinions on apple designs are, and why they are so goddam desirable.

Re:Apple? (1)

veddermatic (143964) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293075)

Because Apple and IDEO (and a couple others like FrogDesign) hire from the same very, very small talent pool.

Look at the job histories of Industrial Designers who work at the top of the top firms, they sort of move around the same firms. In short, the top few firms "get it"

Re:Apple? (3, Informative)

Draoi (99421) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293313)

I would be interested to see what this guys opinions on apple designs are, and why they are so goddam desirable.

I'd suspect they'd be positive, seeing as IDEO also designed [ideo.com] Apple [ideo.com] products [ideo.com] , though all of these were pre-Jonathan Ive.

This guy designed the Duo Dock. Cool ....

He just offended the readers of /. (4, Insightful)

bigmouth_strikes (224629) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293066)

TR: What kind of people do the best design?

BROWN: Well, I can tell you what doesn't workâ"and that is to have a whole bunch of people who are deep in their own technical domain but have no interest in engaging with the others.


Heh, good thing you don't find many of those around /. or any programming sweatshop :)

Seriously though, this is dead on. Too often UI design are developed by the same people hacking the low level stuff or the business side of an application. At the end of the project, usually 6 weeks after schedule, they have to release what they used for testing since there is no time to sit and think about usability.

Rejected stories..... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293126)

Posting anonymous to keep my karma in tact...

USAToday has a story [usatoday.com] about the 'Cajun King of Spam', Ronnie Scelson [chickenboner.com] . Mr. Scelson claims that he sends 60 to 70 million emails a day (or 2 billion a month) while claiming 'What I do is not illegal. It's the people who spam sex, Viagra and get-rich-quick schemes that give commercial e-mailers a bad name.' Apparently, he didn't hear what happend to Alan Ralsky [slashdot.org] when he began bragging about his 'success'.

Designs for Nike, Micro$oft? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293157)

Like most people here, I really admire the innovative work done by IDEO and their work on Nike [nike.com] and Microsoft [microsoft.com] products, even though I have to admit that I'm not a fan of M$ software. :\

I have to say though, that Nike's use of sweatshops [earthlink.net] to produce their merchandise is troubling. Hopefully INDEO as an ethical corporation will take a stand against this shameful labor policy and adopt democratic production methods. A good, book on this written by an objective journalist (not an extremist hippy protester) you can take a look at here. [amazon.com]

Keep up the good work!

Thanks for Clarification... (2, Funny)

superdan2k (135614) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293163)

Good lord, I'm glad you clarified who Tim Brown was, otherwise I would have thought he was an aging wide reciever [yahoo.com] for the Oakland Raiders.

Double plus good that that name wasn't attached to an article about black holes, then.

Disclaimer: If you don't watch football, you won't find this funny and shouldn't waste your mod points. You might not even find it funny if you do watch football because, well, I'm half-awake right now and can't be a good judge of what's funny.

Design for accessibility (2, Insightful)

Epeeist (2682) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293178)

He talks a lot about usability, which is fine.

Here in the UK we are presently involved in implementing the Disability Discrimination Act, which is about Accessibility. How do you design for this?

OT: Getting into the industry (1)

iso (87585) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293185)

Off Topic:
I've been interested in getting into the interface design/industrial design industry from the technical side for a while now. I have a background in Electrical Engineering with both hardware and software desgin experience so I may actually be useful at a company like this :). Does anybody here work in this industry? What kind of experience should I be building if I want to be involved in things like this?

Lots of letter after your name and fellatio skills (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6293263)

The industrial design industry is a sham.

Cool stuff they've done, I see. (1)

iainl (136759) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293208)

Just went for a browse on the Ideo website, to get a clue who he is. They did the Sega Saturn pad! Big kudos to them, its a thing of beauty. Their steering wheel designs for Logitech are darned comfy too.

Don't Miss IDEO's Dilbert Ultimate Cubicle (2, Informative)

Mignon (34109) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293269)

Background here [ideo.com] and demo here [ideo.com] .

Interface Interference (4, Insightful)

howman (170527) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293280)

As an Industrial Designer specializing in User Interface for the integration of the virtual and the physical, the two bigest problems I come up against is first convincing the manufacturer of the value of Interface design, which is getting easier I am happy to say, and secondly convincing them that a product that is a 'Swiss Army Knife' is perhaps not such a great idea. It is much better to have a product which does one thing well rather than a product that does a million things half assed.

We constantly see this in applications and new technology where the engeneers come up with all this facinating stuff and try to cram it into a device hoping customers will overlook the lack of need and only see the prettyness.

As product designers we are at a cross roads where we are only now starting to understand which services and abilities people want grouped together in a single appliance. This is not limited strictly to produts. We are seeing it in services as well. Things like digital television, cell phone service plans as well as in cell phones and PDAs.

Cell phones are great with a camera built in, perhaps even the ability to take a 5 second video, but there is realy no need for a cell phone which is a video camera, no matter how cool it may be to own one. Video cameras do a much better job of capturing video. In the same way you would not want a video camera which had cell phone capabilities... well perhaps you would, but unless your part of a profitably large enough group of consumers, you probably won't get it.

Butt Placement Device (1, Funny)

pipingguy (566974) | more than 11 years ago | (#6293375)


It took "...11 studies by 27 scientists at four universities..." to design --Tah-Dah!-- a chair [ideo.com] .

Clap, clap.
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