SIGIA-L Mail Archives: Re: [Sigia-l] Designers and Developers
Re: [Sigia-l] Designers and Developers
> Umm... Aren't designers going to turn into developers after they learn
> all this stuff?
No. As I explained, print designers of a generation ago, for example, didn't
turn into (PostScript) developers just because they learned to use
> And how much would such a genius cost?
The ability to use new tools becomes the norm and is quickly commoditized.
Today, a designer gets no premium for his ability to use, say, QuarkXPress
or Illustrator, because it's simply expected of him.
> Alright, a technocratic approach.
Just the opposite. It's a way to empower the designer, by making technology
transparent and not the focus. To continue the analogy, it's a way for
designers to express themselves without having to worry about technology. I
distinctly remember having to write bits of PostScript code to get stuff
done in the very early days of digital design. Now, that requirement would
> But wouldn't this give false hopes to designers that they could become
Not at all, because designers are *not* trying to become developers.
> In a way, isn't this going to be another "curse of FrontPage" -- everybody
> thinks they can "just whoop it up"?
A prototype, as I define it, has absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with
what will become the production codebase. The prototype doesn't even begin
to address issues of code efficiency, optimization, compliance,
maintainability, etc. Hell, it could even be done in FrontPage. It's a way
to demonstrate functionality and the intensions of the designers. It's done
for the benefit of the *entire* production team and stakeholder, not just
> So, what you are really saying is that designers have to become engineers?
Not at all. Prototyping is not engineering. An IA or UX designer using,
ahem, Visio to create wireframes doesn't become an engineer. An analyst
putting together a functional prototype of a business flow (in a tool like I
described earlier that requires no coding) is not engaging in engineering.
> I could also say that what we need is good engineers who understand design.
That may be helpful, but not needed at all in my world. Understanding
application architecture is an extremely beneficial thing to have very few
programmers actually posses, but the overall design of an app is too
important to be left to developers alone.
> In either case, so far both you and me are looking for the super-soldier of
> Web development.
I'm actually looking for *designers*, and not just in *web* development.
> And those are usually very few, proud and don't come cheap.
If you simply want cheap, you'll need to turn to offshore.
> Again, we tacked on another responsibility on our soldier: project
> leader and possibly even a client liason.
Design *is* about leadership, not implementation.
Nullius in Verba
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: Wed May 26 2004 - 14:13:22 EDT