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Good design is visibile

Rian van der Merwe talks about the visibility of design in products…

Rams didn’t say that good design disappears completely. “As little design as possible” is not about making things invisible, it’s about “not burdening products with non-essentials”. It’s about making the right choices about what should be there, and what shouldn’t. There is nothing wrong with making the things that are in the product visible, sometimes very much so.

I actually prefer products with very obvious design. Car radios are great example of this. Today, many have fancy digital interfaces. A screen and a single joystick type thing that controls onscreen menus.

What a pain in the ass those things are when you’re driving.

My first car had a handful of knobs and buttons grouped by type. Volume and channel up and down on the left. Bass, treble and mid-range on the right. Tape deck (yes, tape desk) in the middle.

Way more obvious, and way easier to use.