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Simplicity v. Functionality? November 22, 2009

Posted by thomasyl in Design Thinking.
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Tim Brown’s blog on Design Thinking is linked below in the blogroll http://designthinking.ideo.com/.  In his post from 26 October 2009, he contrasts simplicity and minimality.  In a possibly orthogonal discussion, Don Norman contrasts simplicity v. functionality and finds the idea of “simplicity as a virtue” to be wanting.  Norman singles out Google’s search page as an example of poor design – something that sacrifices functionality for the sake of simplicity. Yahoo receives much higher marks for functionality and interestingly, “iGoogle” pretty much looks like “myYahoo”. See Norman’s postings:

(Don Norman is the author of “Design of Everyday Things” among other books, Prof. of Computer Science at Northwestern Univ, and co-director of the Segal Design Institute that houses the program in Engineering, Design and Innovation at Northwestern and the joint MBA/Engineering design degree at Kellogg/Northwestern)