Taking the long view, we can see that our attempts to remove all of our activities from the manual to the mechanical and then to the automatic indiscriminately may be quite wrong …
To quote Bob Malone on this: is the automatic gear shift then a true advance in humane design or not? Since it tends to remove man from a basic and relatively simple use of his motor responses, rather than to simplify and integrate the processes, we can see that the validity of the automatic gear shift is illusory. When a true need or desire is satisfied for a passive human being without effort, the result is not gratification, but rather a more complex level of dissatisfaction.
No environment can strongly affect a person unless it is strongly interactive. To be interactive, the environment must be responsive. That is, it must provide relevant feedback to the learner. For the feedback to be relevant, it must meet the learner where he is, then program (change in appropriate steps at appropriate times) as he changes. The learner changes (that is, is educated) through his responses to the environment.
The student becomes a participant in their own growth, is changed by their environment, and in turn, changes it.
Here, possibly, is the crux of the matter: to instill in the designer a willingness for experimentation, coupled with a sense of responsibility for his failures. Unfortunately, both a sense of responsibility and an atmosphere permissive to failure are rare indeed.
A more ideal creative-design environment will consist of habituating designers and students to work in areas where their many blocks and inhibitions cannot operate, and this would imply a high tolerance level for experimental failure. Furthermore, it must mean that the teaching and exploring of basic principles which, by the very nature, have no immediate application. This calls for a "suspension of belief" in ready answers, and in the glib, slicked-up kitsch that characterizes most of the design work coming out of schools and offices.
When you make a thing, a thing that is new, it is so complicated making it
that it is bound to be ugly.
But those that make it after you,
they don’t have to worry about making it.
And they can make it pretty, and so everybody can like it
when the others
make it after you.
— Picasso, quoted in Victor Papanek's Design for the Real World