Design is everywhere,in everything. There is no one definitive definition that defines design. Design is not just about aesthetics. In fact, design is as fundamental as the air we breathe. Design is in the way your feet fit into your slippers, the way we uncork a wine bottle, the way we get the cap off a tube of toothpaste, the environments we work in, the way we order a pizza. We don’t notice these things because we assume they ought to be there and ought to work in a particular way.
A complex activity design is must be understood as a word that describes both a process and an outcome. It is the process of turning ideas into material things,and adding value to products or services by interfacing with functionality, technology and aesthetics.
Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple Computers said “In most people’s vocabularies, design means decoration. But to me, nothing could be further from the meaning of design. Design is the fundamental soul of a man-made creation”.
Chairman of The Idea Factory, Arnold S. Wasserman, perceives design as “the integration of art and technology for the creation of products, communications and environments that serve human needs. Design is creativity directed toward a purpose.”
Today’s consumer has shifted from conventional commodities to novel experiences that satisfy not only their basic needs but their sensorial, intellectual, emotional, and cultural needs. Creating novel ‘experiences’ for consumers necessitates focusing on, besides their basic needs, deeper aspects of their lives, their emotions, aspirations which are is the prime objectives for a designer.
The UK Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) defines design as ‘Design is a structured creative process. Design is readily associated with industrial product design for manufactured products — specifically the ‘look’ of a product. However, the application of design is much broader, for example designing for function; for aesthetic appeal; for ease of manufacture; for sustainability; and designing for reliability or quality and business processes themselves.
Design is the number one determinant of why a product stands out – or does not.
It is a process of creativity and innovation channelled towards the development of tradable products and services in a multi-disciplinary manner that involves the sciences of materials technology, engineering, ergonomics and manufacturing.
Design is not just as a finishing-off process, but is something that drives enterprise strategy. All competing products will have basically the same technology, price, performance, and features. What sets them apart is the design. Ten years ago, companies competed on price. Then it was quality. Today it is design.
And so, it is not uncommon to find design fanaticism per se to be worth billions of dollars in market capitalization! This is precisely the reason why we believe that designers should have a seat at the boardroom table right next to a CEO.