Improvements in technology are fantastic developments but they can only benefit users to the degree that superior design employs them. Superior design has only become more important as time passes. Product performance that was impossible a generation ago is now not only possible, but deliverable via superior design.
For superior design to happen, you need designers. All of us are or can be designers. We sometimes make design decisions without even realizing it. Some of those design decisions we or others live to regret. Other design decisions we or others live to enjoy.
Maria Giudice is the VP for experience design at Autodesk. I like the way that she captures the evolution of design over generations, and how important it is to design universally and holistically, even to the extent of emotional connection (“Ways of Seeing: Make the Complex Clear” Bloomberg Businessweek, 4/11/16–4/24/16, p. 79):
“I grew up in a time when we were just grateful if things worked. We live in a world where a whole population expects good, fluid experiences. This is where consumer and enterprise are meshing. We always saw a line between enterprise products that were powerful and consumer products that were lightweight and emotive. There’s a whole population that doesn’t see that. They work at home; they play at work. That’s why I’ve been thinking about emotions and product design. . . . The machine is going to know so much about you and your behavior that, rather than you telling the machine what to do, the machine will offer up what you should be doing.”