Monthly Radio Discussion About Design

I recently landed a monthly spot on a Vancouver radio station to talk about design for 20 minutes.

I’m reaching out to the Core community here to hear what is on your mind these days. What do you want the world to know about Design? What do I need to be talking about that will help lift the tide for Design?

I’m particularly interested in hearing what you have to say if you’re a designer working in Canada…but this spot will have global reach (with the interwebz and all).

Awesome Jon, congrats!

Here are a few thoughts off the top of my head:

  1. the non linear nature of the design process that we try to cram into a linear process or modern western business practices
  2. how buyers at retailers are the gate keepers to what people see in a store and how online retailers (and crowd funding) and lower cost (investment) manufacturing are changing that
  3. the inability for hardware to adapt that is in conflict with the fast pace of software change and how products that are a part of an ecosystem need to anticipate that
  4. the fallacy of design specialization at the leadership level and the concept of the T shaped designer

Is this to be directed at designers or the general public?

Good question, I’m still in the formation of our speaking schedule, but my thought is that I will be targeting the public and business stake holders.

It will cross over from month to month, but my goal is about discussing the role of design in the world around us with the goal to educate as much as possible.

I expect I will target the consumer with discussions about Yo’s #2 above one month, and I’ll speak to the role of the burgeoning C-Level designer in business another time, etc. etc.

Some ideas:

  1. How to strongly integrate the overall customer experience from advertising, point-of-sale, all the way through the entire product lifecycle, and how this can relate to the design of a product. Focusing also on various sales touchpoints such as social media, crowdfunding, vending machines, interactive webshops/apps etc.

  2. A critical look at how product customization/personalization can be a valuable part in this product lifecycle. A simple example is Starbucks putting your name on your cup. Answering simple questions such as, how valuable is it to put a name or message on a product, in how many different colors should I manufacture the product, how many and what kind of variations in shape/usability/functionality do I offer?

  3. 3D printing as an enabler of consumer product personalization.

  4. Smart approaches to product prototyping.

  5. How to find and maintain a unique identity as a designer, and how to stimulate this both in design education and design companies.

  6. Why we see a lot of product differentiation in some product areas, and less in others. Areas where industrial design is needed and areas where it is too saturated with design.

I recommend a balance of both localized and globalized references.

Vancouver has grown into and is very much a film industry city. How does design support the film industry in Vancouver?

Vancouver is home to one of the largest Chinese immigrant populations. All of those recently built homes over in western VC have some pretty high end market and taste levels being met with design there.

Vancouver is home to UBC and Emily Carr. Both offer design courses but both have a very different approach to teaching design.

Dropping names of local firms into your rhetoric will provide relevance and boost your own profile.

Design thinking in business

How is China now integrating design into its economy.

How UX is now the dominant discipline, whereas 10 years ago it was user interface design and the 1990s it was product design.

Explain the trend in strategy behind why many design firms are being purchased by larger firms in order to bring design in house.

Good luck…

I thought I was the only one that thought about this. Ugh.

Something that I’ve been thinking about lately is how I felt that design was gaining speed in the '90’s and has since seemed to have a lot of false starts. I thought Apple would be an example, but only a few companies really followed it. Now, many startups talk up design, but their final products are these engineering driven beasts.

The questions I have are 1) is this reality or am I just getting cranky 2) what are the drivers 3) what can we do?

Best of luck Jon! Make sure to post a url when it starts!

This is all great. As I was hoping it is both reinforcing my thoughts while expanding on them at the same time.

Please keep it coming!

First episode. High level. Predominantly small talk and “getting to know each other” vibe.

Apparently, “ideate” is a real word. Who knew?

I like that you got into “Vancouver design sucks”. hehe. I feel the same about Montreal.

Congrats, good job.

Thanks for that, 914…I’ll forward that on to Minelle :slight_smile: