In this assignment you will address the characteristics of “good design.” For instance, Joel Schindall from the Gordon Engineering Leadership Program offers these elements of good product design:
- You know it when you see it
- Minimalist — meets requirements in an efficient manner
- Wow factor — leaps out at you
- Robust — failure-resistant
- “Anticipatory” — easily modified to overcome unanticipated problems (this is subtle but important)
- Combines functions to increase efficiency — mounting bracket doubles as heat sink, etc.
By contrast, this interview with Blade Kotelly from Endeca Technologies offers these elements of good software design:
- Visually Clean
- Communicates clearly and quickly
- Useful in some way (intended or unintended)
- Provides clear feedback
- Keeps users oriented as to their current state
- Maintains locus of control with user
- Emotionally compelling
- Provides simple controls for input
- Aligns to societal mores
Now it’s your turn. Please make 2 lists. The first list should be 5-10 characteristics of good design in biology as we find it in the natural world. The second list should be 5-10 characteristics of good design in biologically engineered technologies.
Why are we doing this??
As you start to design your own projects, it’s important to think at a high level about “good design” elements. If you can articulate “what makes it great,” then you should be in a powerful position to make wise decisions about project ideas, to accurately evaluate competing ideas and technologies, and to fully appreciate of what exists and what can be improved.