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Raskin vs Jobs: Serious design vs selling design

Half way through the Steve Jobs Biography, the biggest revelation for me so far is the clash between Raskin and Jobs. It's a clash between serious design and selling design:

1. Serious design does not necessarily sell well. That's why it needs to be expensive to even exist.
2. What sells is sentimentalism, nostalgia, solemnity—what sells is kitsch. That's why kitsch can be so cheap. Because it sells so well.

That is true for any kind of design. And this is why iCal has this fucking leather surface that makes any user interface designer puke wet feverish dogs. And that's why Apple has so much money in the bank. Not because of the mind blowing design of its hardware. (They always had the nicest hardware). But because people are sold through its nostalgic interface. The winning path started with OSX, the interface "you want to lick." Kitsch interfaces makes the average user think:

"I know how to use this!" (which is always a false promise)

instead of

"Looks like I need to learn to use this." (which is always the case)

In practice, Jef Raskin's serious design approach would win hands down against the Jobs approach—but Jef would not even get the chance to compete, because no one cares about serious design before getting in touch with it.
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This is why I decided to give it a year or two before I read it. Whatever happens with Apple in the next 2-5 years is crucial for the story.

On the other hand I do respect (really do) Steve Jobs for one thing. It was OK to fail.
 
I had a few conversations with Raskin a while before he died, touching on this. He wrote an article condemning the theory and practice of a UI consultancy firm I'd just quit, I couldn't agree with him in public so I sent him an email saying "you pegged it," we started talking.

Glad Apple finally figured out how to make some money. Still don't like them much, and that's entirely because I was a UI designer forever.
 
Having to choose between serious and selling design is exactly what I'd call a First World Problem. Most of us are faced with the challenge of No-Design-At-All.
 
So, basically you're saying that

- the casing must be modernist-ishly great to make it an icon
- the underlying platform tayloristically splendid to keep the factories busy and the money flowing in
- but the screen must be filled with homey, caring, Norman Rockwell-ish surfaces

… or folks won't buy it because they/we still don't love modernism/functionalism/machinery that much?
 
.."Raskin wanted an appliance with little memory, an anemic processor, a cassette tape, no mouse, and minimal graphics. Unlike Jobs, he might have been able to keep the price down close to $1,000, and that may have helped Apple win market share. But he could not have pulled off what Jobs did, which was to create and market a machine that would transform personal computing."... AS i read it Jobs was very much focused on "serious design" (even while not being a designer, a rarity), while Raskin wanted above all a compact and cheap machine (a PC)... Raskin was important for the initial push tho... my two cents :)
 
I never really understood why iCal looks so fucking weird on lion... it's definately a false promise...
 
Can a design "win" if no one cares? No. And yes, iCal sucks. :-)
 
+Eric van der Mark I got the same impression - I hadn't read much about Raskin's contributions beforehand, just assuming he was an interface demigod and leaving at that. Was surprised to read about the computer he wanted to build; surely the Macintosh was objectively the better option?

As for the NUI - it might be starting to make sense today but again in 1984 a GUI was simply more appropriate.
 
The latest version of iCal makes me want to kill people.
 
"Was surprised to read about the computer he wanted to build; surely the Macintosh was objectively the better option?"

No, it was just what Steve Jobs wanted to build.
 
I'm quite glad Jobs made the Macintosh ... > Jef Raskin went to work for Canon after Apple...there he built the computer he wanted to build when he was headbanging with Jobs...http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canon_Cat .... it flopped... doesn't mean it was necessarily a bad design (to all the iCal bashers...yep, i use iCal :)
 
“Jef was really pompous,” he said. “He didn’t know much about interfaces."

That's hysterical, considering that it's coming from a guy who never designed or built anything in his life, ever. Jobs was real good at taking all the credit and shitting on the people who really did build and design things for him, though.

Steve Jobs "didn't know much about interfaces," and if that statement makes anybody angry, neither do they.
 
"To get an idea how far off Jobs was: He wanted to forbid the cursor keys. People should be forced to use the mouse."

Oh yeah, that's obvious: you couldn't even delete files on Macs with the Delete key until the late nineties, right before Jobs came back. I remember telling other designers about that after first switching to Windows, primarily, back when. "Hey, you don't have to leave a space open to use that stupid trash can all the time! You can just hit the Delete key!" They were all "Do you get a confirmation box, or does it just delete them? That sounds dangerous..." They swiped the "three fingered salute" from PCs around the same time, IIRC.

Apple's the king of Not Invented Here companies - if the mouse was invented with three buttons and that's how everybody else does it, they gotta go with one button and then insist that's superior forever. And some small number of North American computer users buy that nonsense.
 
Oh yeah, I use MS mice almost exclusively and have for years, where I used to go all Logitech.

The Xbox is pretty nice, too, though, both models. And they've got great controllers, probably the best ones to hold for long periods of time at this point in game console history. People tend to forget about that.
 
How so? It stands there on the shelf and I turn it on and off and I almost never think about it. That's about all that's required of console box design, in my book.

And the 360 stands on its side better than any of Sony's attempts to do the same, so it saves a ton of space - it's got about the same footprint as the Wii right next to it in our house, and that thing needs an and loseable/breakable kickstand to stand on its side, like the Sony boxes.

The first one was pretty freaking huge and monstrous, but...it worked, they sold a bunch and totally beat everybody's "never gonna fly in Japan and Europe" expectations, partly because it looked like a tank, I have to think.
 
This is a telling statement to me:
“In practice, Jef Raskin's serious design approach would win hands down against the Jobs approach—but Jef would not even get the chance to compete, because no one cares about serious design before getting in touch with it.”

What do you mean by "win", exactly? In terms of viability? Desirability? If no one cares about serious design before touching it, then isn't it simply less suited to the task of making computing more accessible? The flip side of the "false promise" that selling design delivers is that users have more faith in their own ability to use that interface, because they feel like it was built for them, even if the learning curve for both types of interface is the same. It encourages them, and that psychological advantage is critical. If you've ever seen the crippling fear that many people still have towards the most mundane of computer tasks and computers in general because they feel like it just wasn't built for "people like them", then you can appreciate exactly how critical.
 
Have not reached Raskin part of the book, but I can't believe the "He didn’t know much about interfaces." part! Jef Raskin didn't know much about interfaces! And Steve Jobs didn't knew much about selling.
 
I don't get this debate at all. Why is there necessarily a difference between serious design and selling design? I am intrigued by Raskins ideas, but I do not think that there is this great void between serious design and selling design. Maybe appropriate design is a better term, basically designing for the need at hand. I agree with @Mark Hurrell here, it is really more about demographics and the types of users you are designing for.

So user friendly design isn't serious design? And if it is selling then it must be somehow less serious?

Btw:
On imagery/icons/mouse vs. text/keyboard
I think Steve was right in using icons as navigation rather than the phonetic language. Just look at iphone UI and how intuititve it is. Imagery trumps text in most cases as being faster to grasp and easier to process mentally. And the use of icons allow people to work on a computer set up in chinese, as you can still find your way to the internet browser.


Raskin also advocated for using a one or two button mouse insted of the 3 button one at PARC, but he later said that he wanted to put text labels on the buttons.

The Cat also featured only a keyboard input and you had to use the cursors or jump up and down via search to find your way.

Thats not serious design, just really bad design.
 
wow I here read all those comments from designers and wonder why we all are so freaking arrogant. we work for unprofessionals, we design interfaces and objects for people who don't know 'how to' but have to use it! get over it! that's our task. I am not saying just serve what they desire, I am saying that with all the complaints about how people are so ignorant when it comes to whatever we consider good design, than maybe, it isn't good or/and we need to start to understand the psychology of human beings as some of us seem to be some higher life-form. yes we like nostalgia, because it helps us categorize the world in order to understand it. and why the hell was the click-wheel such a mindblowing success? cause it's intuitive. and so are anologies! now our task should be to understand that our brains are limited when it comes to understanding something, we are no experts in. and just then, we should be able to create great design solutions that both cover our psycho-physiological needs as well as high values. it's interesting that designers rave about those great buildings from the period of modernism, reduced, white, clean where most of us do or wish to live in an old factory building with wooden floors and industrial windows. it's like we preach water and drink wine!
 
By the way I agree that using spatial navigation is better. The finder in OS X broke the spatial model of the old finder (which I loved and was a contribution of Jef Raskin), for the worst I think. However, that had nothing to do with serious vs. kitsch. I can´t really say that Raskin´s ZUI is a better user experience or that it wins hands down. There´s a text editor based on those ideas but I don´t remember the name of it, just that it was very emacs like.
 
tip:install Mac Lion Tweaks which kills the leather layout...first thing I did...
 
+Oliver Reichenstein How many people wear High Heels or other uncomfortable styles for their aesthetic qualities? It might not be the right choice but it's the individual's choice.
 
+Oliver Reichenstein Who knows what shoes they prefer? I guess that would be the user. Velcro shoes were invented because someone realized that kids and elderly have trouble using shoe laces.

Who knows hot to make shoes with current technology? That would be the shoe maker. But most innovation comes from the outside, so the person who knows how to take the shoe to the next level by combining technologies into new products may really be the best shoe maker. And that would be a good way to describe Jobs' role. He was never the designer, but he certainly knew how to innovate and how to push for excellence and pleasure with the products as opposed to making it just work.

And he used a lot of great designers and thinkers to help him do just that. The Park people, Don Norman, Bill Moggridge, Jonathan Ive, Paul Mercer (itunes designer), Cordell Ratzlaff (the guy who designed OS X) and many many more.

And again, what is design really? Problem solving.
 
This argument depends entirely on the objectives of the said project, and the various parameters. What is externally popular in a general sense always wins over what is internally better, unless those choosing can be fully sold on the wholesomeness of what is internally better. Even so they may still choose the popular over the better.

It depends not only on your objectives, but on theirs. You may want to create the most usable product and they may merely want to be seen with the most popular one, irrespective of it's usability. The best case scenario would be to blend them where the usability and desirability combine to take the product to the next level, which is what I believe Apple achieves in many cases.
 
Is the problem with iCal subjective dislike to the leather texture and the frayed paper, or does that actually make the app more difficult to use? If iCal had the same 75px menu bar with the same buttons and UX design, but the Lion default grey UI chrome would the app be easier to use? I really don't think so.

The problem with the overdone skeumorphism occurs when the over-the-top visual design of the UI gets in the way of functionality. Look at the mess of to-do apps for iPad. In Apple's case I don't see the superficial visual design realism making the app any more difficult to use than one with the "stock" UI.

If you want a plain UI, look at the bland lifeless redesign of Google Reader.
 
+Jonathan Dascola Another problem with overdone skeumorphism occurs when the over-the-top visual design is so over-the-top or ugly or sentimental or nostalgic or quaint or whatever other cutesy adjective fits the thing that it becomes a distraction. I'm clearly not alone in thinking that an uncluttered, plain UI can be both intuitive and beautiful, and thereby increase our joy is using it. For iOS, take Calvetica or the new TaskPaper. Would iCal be easier to use without the tacky leather and torn pages? Probably not. But would it be more enjoyable to use with it? I think so. And doesn't that matter?
 
+Richard Mavis But that's where the subjectivity comes in. I think TaskPaper looks boring and uninspiring. In a sense the whole web is skeuomorphic. Should any gradient, shadow, raised button or bit of depth, which in turn is "fake," be questioned? Sounds like a pretty boring world to me.
 
What we all seem to forget when talking usability is that, what is usable for a brain surgeon, is not for a hairdresser. Excuse the examples, they just came off the top of my head :). Aesthetics are very much a part of usability, and depending on who we're talking to and the desired result we're trying to achieve, we may choose a different Aesthetic approach.

What is Bland and lifeless about Google Reader's redesign, maybe perfectly suite someone who's main interest is absolute focus on reading the words. Some people blank out when there are too many words on a page without a picture to give them something to hold onto visually, other's purposely choose to browse with images turned off, to achieve more focused reading.

This debate is kind of like the women from venus and men from mars one. We're just not all the same.

Does everyone love the deep growling sound of a harley davidson, no, but to some it has a purpose and is highly effective at achieving that. One person's bling is another person's bleh, and one person's white space is another persons hey where did all the stuff go.
 
In practice, Jef Raskin's serious design approach would win hands down against the Jobs approach—but Jef would not even get the chance to compete,

By all accounts, the Canon Cat was very close to Raskin's original vision for the Mac. To say that it didn't exactly win "hands down" would be rather an understatement.
 
+Jonathan Dascola I agree with you. Lots of people like shadows and raised buttons, and in most cases cases they're great and useful.

But why would anybody think that a faux-frayed paper decoration would trick users into thinking an app is friendlier and more approachable and easy to use because there's nothing to learn? When I tear a page out of a notebook or something and it leaves frayed paper, that frayed paper annoys me so much that I will take time to tear it out, piece by spiral-torn piece if need be. Why would anybody possibly want to recreate that annoyance in an application? And it's even worse in a application because I can't do anything about it. That neither increases my joy nor makes the app seem easier to use. It's just annoying.

My fiancee treats computers as a more or less necessary evil but feels the same way:

> It makes me think that whoever made it probably spent too much time making it look like something I could get at Powell's instead if focusing on the usability of the application.
> I think it is cheesy.

Faux-physical design can be fun and inspiring. See the Gradient app for OS X: http://cl.ly/BWdH. It's great.

But faux-physical design, at least in many cases, seems at best a distraction and at worst like retrograde. Things like raised buttons or shadows as window borders are usually good because they can enhance look-and-feel as well as usability. But when it's purely decorative, and calls attention to itself, shifting the user's attention away from the content to the design, and especially when it recalls the grossness and annoyance of the physical thing it replaces, doesn't that detract more than it adds?
 
+Oliver Reichenstein and the reason people don't know that the Canon Cat ever existed is NOT that Raskin didn't have a chance to build it, or that the company didn't execute faithfully on his vision, or that it wasn't marketed. The reason is that people didn't want to buy it. There was a "practice", and Raskin's design approach did NOT "win hands down".

I agree that "not selling is not a proof that it sucks", but not only did the Canon Cat not sell, but its design does not seem to have had any appreciable influence on products that DID sell. If it didn't sell and didn't inspire, in what conceivable way did it "win" ?
 
+Oliver Reichenstein You're asserting that "in practice"(a) Raskin's approach "would win"(b).

I'm arguing that (a) happened (Raskin got a chance to do things his way, at another company) and (b) did not happen (I don't see any way the result can be argued to have "won").

Which of these two do you dispute?
 
I don't think he is trying to assert that Raskin's approach would "win", as in becoming used or sell a lot, rather I think he is saying that it is "better" when you have spent significant time with it, but people flock to the shiny stuff and never give it time.
 
I'd like to say a few mitigating words about the new design of the Adress Book and the iCal though. Although I agree that they look bad, and I hated it at first, they address one flaw that I had been complaining about before: they do not look the same as all the other applications on the system. Uniformity looks nice, but when you are looking for that window you need in Exposé, it can be irritating. They also added icons to the Exposéd applications though, so maybe it was superflous.
 
Leather/minimal style is not the most import aspect of these different approaches to UI. It's only a visible aspect. What's more important (and more saddening for people who don't like the selling approach) is that Raskin was a scientist and innovator and didn't mind ignoring established conventions for making a better UI for the task at hand. But a selling business is not very probable to do that. That's why we have not seen many 'breakthrough's in the UIs of softwares.

+Aldo Barba You're talking about Archy.

+Oliver Reichenstein I've always liked your take on the matter of user interfaces, and recently it seems that you're more into this than before. Have you ever thought of making a book, or a series of articles, or something like that? There's much to be told about software UIs.
 
+Oliver Reichenstein OK, so it seems I misunderstood you. By "chance" you mean end users giving him a chance of using his products (not manufacturers giving him a chance to design them), and by "win" you mean that word processing users would prefer his approach over the alternative. Fair enough.

But did Apple WANT to produce a "writing machine" ? No. SHOULD they have wanted to produce one? Hell no! Dedicated word processing machine manufacturers pretty much got massacred in the early 1980s (cf. Wang Laboratories). Did Raskin want to produce a "writing machine"? It does not seem so. He simply ended up with a design that was not all that well suited for anything else.
 
This conversation reminds me of a screenplay (http://commandcenter.blogspot.com/2011/09/we-open-in-well-lit-corporate.html) by +Rob Pike. And I don't know if anybody here have seen the excellent interface of Plan 9 operating system (http://cm.bell-labs.com/plan9/img/screenshot.gif) he designed about more than ten years ago. It was for programmers, not average computer users. It was great, and although even the meaning of mouse buttons were different in it (button 1 selects, button 2 (middle) executes, button 3 locates), I got used to them in no time (maybe that's a sign of good interface). And guess what? It didn't sell well.
 
+Oliver Reichenstein Raskin's vision of the Macintosh did not include a mouse, icons, or a 68K processor. The greatness of the Mac interfaces was NOT "what was left from Raskin's work".
 
+Mostafa Hajizadeh I've used Pike's sam editor for a few years. It features an internal architecture that was brilliant for its time (With a separate front-end for the display machine, a back-end for the machine where the file system resided, and a low bandwidth protocol between the two — something that was much more important at the time than it is now). It also has a simple, orthogonal, and powerful command language.

However, it was pretty much the least productive text editor I've ever used, and I say that as somebody who uses vi, emacs, and mouse based editors all fairly comfortably.
 
+Oliver Reichenstein I don't know whether or not Raskin invented the one button mouse (Some people argue that his word on what he invented should not always be taken at face value, cf. http://www.folklore.org/StoryView.py?project=Macintosh&story=I_Invented_Burrell.txt), but it seems clear that he did NOT want the Macintosh to have a mouse, and the Canon Cat definitely did not come with one. That's why I'm saying that Raskin's vision of the Macintosh did not include a mouse.
 
+Oliver Reichenstein It seems that we (and the late Raskin) agree that he considered pointing devices as somewhat dispensable to his vision of computing, and icons as more of a detriment than a help. One may or may not agree with this design concept, but surely this is NOT what the Macintosh embodied. As for marketing, Jobs was quite hit & miss himself in the 80s. The Mac was not a great commercial success initially, and the NeXT station sold very badly.
 
Well I disagree here. Raskin was sometimes very radical in his approach, I found some of his "findings" to be thought constructs essentially void of any connection to real world usage and especially real world users.

I've looked into the Raskin UI, which basic thought construct and first prototypes were developed by Jef and AFAIK then taken over by Aza. I find them quite unsusable and not very productive. Canon Cat users also usually swear at the machine not by it.

I think Raskin is more of a reality removed theoretical UI entrepreneur/research type who might come up with radical new approaches to UI (raw diamonds), but not someone to make something really usable for real life (cut diamonds).
 
"Who knows how to make shoes? The shoemaker or the person that wears shoes?"

The shoemaker. Best example: Japanese parents think, that little children because they have such soft feet need super soft shoes. So they buy them crap shoes that are soft and then are surprised if the child grows up with feet problems.

Don't ask users what they want, because they tell you what they want, not what they need. They ususally know bugger all about their needs. Observe them well and you'll find what they really need. The same is true for clients of any business.
 
I don´t agree on the canon cat being better than IAWriter.
 
+Oliver Reichenstein "absolutely essential" is sometimes management speak (I've shipped plenty of products missing features that were at some point decreed to be "absolutely essential", "non-negotiable", etc.). I'm saying "somewhat dispensable" because I'm looking at what Raskin was willing to ship: The Canon Cat definitely shipped without a graphic input device, and there are multiple accounts that I consider credible that Raskin recommended shipping the Mac without a graphic input device.

In both cases, it appears that a desire to keep down overall system cost and complexity had higher priority than the advantages of a graphic input device. Ultimately, if you're willing to ship without some feature, you don't consider that feature "absolutely essential".
Ian Hex
 
Schopenhauer was probably the closest to Buddhism than any Western philosopher has ever come to.
Ian Hex
 
+Oliver Reichenstein Heh, it's possible. I've seen a similar criticism levied at him but from a Hindu point of view.
 
+Oliver Reichenstein I don't know by what bizarre reasoning process you've managed to convince yourself that Raskin was not a manager. Bottom line is that the one computer that he brought to market did not ship with any graphic input device, so I don't see why you would rely on Raskin's words when you have the historical record of his actions in plain sight.
 
I find it refreshing to see an interface design pro finally pointing out that Jobs was for all purposes selling kitsch. People usually get snowed under by his declarations that he was in constant search of culture, of Art and by his deprecating Gates for not having good taste. I think his declarations on Art or the Gates "culture level" were hilarious. Jobs wasn't looking for Art or good design he was looking for his own personal definition of visual hipness. He himself had very little culture, very little education for actually making up really coherent, interesting and truly cultured approach to the interface. So, what he sold people was pure kitsch, his personal idea of kitsch.

I fully agree with your distinction between Raskin and Jobs and between serious design and selling design.

However, I would add that there was another crucial difference between Jobs and Raskin, an essential element for anyone doing interfaces with a visual component. Raskin was, at the core of his personality, at the core of his capacities of perception as a human, an extremely textual, conceptual being. He was the opposite of a "visual" person. He could grasp visual elements only indirectly. That's what made the Canon Cat such a joy for people who worked with text, with keyboards and such a pain for visual types. Yes, I know that the Canon Cat was a sad compromise in Raskin's view (I read all his books and his website and his interventions on several lists while he was still alive) but I also know that the major things that he felt lacking in it would not have added a drop to the visual experience.

In contrast Jobs was an extremely visual person. He was happy - mad about all visual aspects. But lacking any training in the visual arts (academic or even through self-teaching) or any patience to learn from others on a daily basis his approach was chaotic and highly personal. He talked about fine design but gave us instead the iMac, which was great for persons who like bubble gum colors and grossly rounded things but which disgusted people who don't like those combinations. Like you said, it was kitschy.

I think that both Raskin and Jobs were crucial to the development of our current UIs / iAs / Computer experiences. But I also think that Gassee and Scully should be praised for having listened to the Apple engineers and technician-inventors who convinced them to produce and market the advanced versions of the Mac (which they had thought up and made into prototypes) that finally made that machine (and its interface) a real success. The first Mac was a complete market flop and Jobs opposed changing it, expanding it, before he was driven out of Apple.
 
Many interesting thoughts appear above along with a bunch of absolute crap. The Cat was not limited to cursor keys. The Leap is provably the fastest way to move the cursor where you want it unless you are already almost there. And Leap Again is awesome. Having files you don't need to name which you can find in seconds anyway is liberating. Having built-in live spread sheets gives incredible power still not yet widely available. But there remain problems such as that it is hard to be really better without being different.

Raskin's book, "The Humane Interface" is quite clear. To see Jef's summary of the rules and principles, see the book title at Nitpicker.PBwiki.com and then see if you can suggest better ones.

There was a project with Raskin to make a laptop before any had been popular. When the investors questioned the direction, those who had ever used a Cat wanted to continue, but those who had not, wanted to stop, and prevailed. Still, the world is far better off for Raskin's work, and his son's, and, I still admit, for Jobs' work despite his many flaws.
 
Oliver said " What is so go dammed depressing is that without Apple starting to produce selling design with Jobs back on board we'd all be forced to use Windows."

No. It's MUCH worse. We'd all be forced to use MSDOS. If the three choices of OS for the IBM PC were priced the same, we could have had UCSD Pascal which was actually easy to use and might have led to wonderful things. It was way ahead of the other two and vastly more sensibly extensible. I wrote a doctor's office database system that never needed reorganization in less than two weeks, for example. Nobody I knew could have done that in BASIC under MSDOS.
 
I dunno. Long before Jobs went back to Apple Commodore came up with the Amiga and it was a stunningly powerful machine with an adaptable GUI and OS, fully open to third parties and even small time developers.
 
About the "one way instead of many ways". This is very good for simplicity, however we are not all wired the same way. Somebody who can't do blind touch typing will be likley to avoid using the keyboard too much.

What I like about the Mac UI is that it always provided at least two ways of operation: mouse based and keyboard shortcut based. That goes even for data transfer (cut & paste vs. drag & drop) I started off as a "mouser" in ye olden days, but I've been a keyboard junkie for decades now and really only go to the mouse for drawing or complex selection tasks.

I just have the feeling that Raskin, a "keyboard type", simply forgot that many people aren't and will never be good in using keyboards. For these people the mouse, menus and button bars (or a touch based interface) are a godsend. It surely isn't as efficient as using keyboard shortcuts, but again there are people who will never "get this keyboard thing". I know tons of people who just want to do everything with the mouse.

So providing only one way rather than several ways might not be in the best interest of users who tend to prefer one way of interaction over another for various reasons. So I think it is also more intuitive to provide several paths to the target rather than just the "one true path to enlightenment". It feels too patronising, too radical, and in the end might be limiting the usability to a certain type of person.
 
Gotta add one more thing, to avoid misreadings of my above comment. I meant the above in general for UIs, not in particular concerning writer.

As the name says writer is an app for writing. If you can't type you probably won't use it, so writer’s approach to "stay on the keyboard" and get rid of all distractions is perfectly brilliant and exactly on spot there. 文句なし
 
Why is it we think our design education and experience makes us so smart and we need to create award winning designs.

I have a client that insists on his work looking like crap; as if a soccer mom designed the work in a cheap graphics program on a PC. Argh! I hated it. It looks like garbage!

The problem is that he gets amazing results and response rates that far exceed the industry norms.

I can't deny it, I found that NOT being extremely slick actually wins customers, even if it does not win awards. Knowing that people do respond to something authentic, we are under orders from several of our clients to actually make it look a bit unplanned or amateur. It makes our portfolio look like crap, but our clients get results.

As an artist it is counterintuitive. But, when you think about it, Jobs is right. People want to feel comfortable, even if that means fake knobs or the only graphic in a video is one simple title. Design should not get in the way.

I used to read and worship all the design magazines. Now I run the other direction because everyone copies that. I just do what I feel is right for the customer and let the chips fall. I tend to think trends are for people who can't think only copy.
 
+Matthias Neeracher What you apparently do not know is that the users of the Canon Cat grew quickly to love it and were properly distraught when they had to switch to some other computer which did not work so nicely.

We don't know exactly why Canon stopped making it, but I do believe that it is true that no user ever reported an actual bug in the operating system. That is truly remarkable.
 
I hear that all the time when people want to defend something, but lack arguments: nobody has ever complained about it. People who file bug reports or take the effort to contact the maker to complain about a product are a very special type and rare. Most people who don't like a product silently abandon it (or tell only their friends how it sucked). No complaints =! no bug or no problems. This is simply not a valid argument. Maybe people were so indifferent to the product that they didn't feel like reporting bugs? No one can tell.
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