Design has vast, untapped potential, but is defined in many different ways. If we want to come together as an international community to support its evolution, we must not be afraid to discuss, dissect and disagree on what design is, does, and can do. Self-examination is a crucial step in the maturing of any profession; it is only through an open critique that we can address the factors that inhibit professional recognition and growth. There is nothing like lively debate to resolve our internal contradictions, transform our ideas, and ultimately form a solid basis of collaboration.
At IBM, we define visual designers to be those who communicate intent and meaning through visual experiences to inform and promote action from users.
Design is needed for its emphasis on people and the sense that “good enough” isn‘t good enough anymore. Designed solutions are those that understand the complex environment they inhabit and find solutions that empower and aid without causing destruction in some other corner of the world. Good design will, by definition, be design that exists in harmony with its environment. Self-regulating and self-sustaining systems are everywhere in nature. We can absorb their lessons.
“I see graphic design as something that began in the 1920s and died in 2008,” he continued. “It doesn’t exist anymore. And the reason it doesn’t exist is because it’s completely infiltrated everything.”