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Design is the creation of a plan or convention for the construction of an object, system or measurable human interaction (as in architectural blueprints , engineering drawings , business processes , circuit diagrams , and sewing patterns ). [1] Design has different connotations in different fields (see design disciplines below). In some cases, the direct construction of an object (as in pottery , engineering , management , coding , and graphic designis also considered to use design thinking.

Designing the necessities of the aesthetic , functional , economic, and sociopolitical dimensions of both the design object and the design process. It can involve considerable research , thought , modeling , interactive adjustment , and re-design. Meanwhile, various kinds of objects may be designed, including clothing , graphical user interfaces , skyscrapers , corporate identities , business processes , and even methods or processes of designing. [2]

Thus “design” may be a substantive reference to a categorical abstraction of a created thing or things (the design of something), or a verb for the process of creation and is made clear by grammatical context. It is an act of creativity and innovation.


More formally designed

(noun) a specification of an object , Manifested by an agent , Intended to Accomplish goals , in a Particular environment , using a set of primitive components, satisfying a set of requirements , subject to constraints; (verb, transitive) to create a design, in an environment (where the designer operates) [3]

Another definition for design is “a roadmap or a strategic approach for someone to achieve a unique expectation.” It defines the specifications, plans, parameters, costs, activities, processes and how and what to do within legal, political, social, environmental, safety and economic constraints in achieving that objective. ” [4]

Here, a “specification” can be expressed as either a plan or a finished product, and “primitives” are the elements from which the design object is composed.

With such a broad denotation, there is no universal language or unifying institution for designers of all disciplines. This allows for many different philosophies and approaches to the subject (see Philosophies and Studies of Design , below).

The person is a designer , who is also a member of the board of directors, who is a member of the board of directors, who is a designer, a designer, a web designer or an interior designer. . A designer’s sequence of activities is called a design process while the scientific study is called design science . [5] [6] [7] [8]

Another definition of design is planning to manufacture an object, system, component or structure. Thus the word “design” can be used as a noun or a verb. In a broader sense, the design is an applied art and engineering that integrates with technology.

While the definition of design is fairly broad, design has a myriad of specifications that professionals utilize in their fields.

Design as a process

Substantial disagreement exist concerning how to design in many fields, whether amateur or professional, alone or in teams, produce designs. Kees Dorst and Judith Dijkhuis, both designers themselves, argued that “there are many ways of describing design processes” and “discussed two basic and fundamentally different ways”, [9] both of which have several names. The prevailing view has been called “the rational model”, [10] “technical problem solving” [11]and “the reason-centric perspective”. [12] The alternative view has been called “reflection-in-action”, [11] “evolutionary design”, [8] “co-evolution”, [13] and “the action-centric perspective”. [12]

The rational model

The rational model indépendamment Was developed by Herbert A. Simon , [14] an American scientist, Gerhard and Wolfgang Pahl and Beitz, two German engineering design theorists. [15] It posits that:

  1. designers attempt to optimize a design for candidate Known constraints and objective ,
  2. the design process is plan-driven,
  3. the design process is understood in a discrete sequence of stages.

The rational model is based on a rationalist philosophy [10] and underlies the waterfall model , [16] systems development life cycle , [17] and much of the engineering design literature. [18] According to the rationalist philosophy, design is informed by research and knowledge in a predictable and controlled manner.

Example sequence of stages

Typical courses include the following model:

  • Pre-production design
    • Design brief or Party taken – an early (often the beginning) statement of design goals
    • Analysis – current design goals
    • Research – investigating similar design solutions in the field or related topics
    • Specification – Specifying requirements of a design solution for product ( product design specification ) [19] or service.
    • Problem solving – conceptualizing and documenting design solutions
    • Presentation – presenting design solutions
  • Design during production
    • Development – continuation and improvement of a solution
    • Testing – in situ testing of a designed solution
  • Post-production design feedback for future designs
    • Implementation – introducing the designed solution into the environment
    • Evaluation and conclusion – summary of process and results, including constructive criticism and suggestions for future improvements
  • Redesign – any or all stages in the design process repeated (with corrections made) at any time before, during, or after production.

Each stage has many associated best practices . [20]

Criticism of the rational model

The rational model has been widely criticized on two primary grounds:

  1. Designers do not work this way – extensive empirical evidence has shown that designers do not act as the rational model suggests. [21]
  2. Unrealistic assumptions – goals are often unknown when a design project begins, and the requirements and constraints continue to change. [22]

The action-centric model

The action-centric perspective is a label given to a collection of interrelated concepts, which are antithetical to the rational model. [12] It posits that:

  1. Designers use creativity and emotion to generate design candidates
  2. the design process is improvised ,
  3. no universal sequence of stages is apparent – analysis, design and implementation are contemporary and inextricably linked [12]

The action-centric perspective is based on an empiricist philosophy and broadly consistent with the agile approach [23] and amethodical development. [24] Substantial empirical evidence supports the veracity of this perspective in describing the actions of real designers. [21] Like the rational model, the action-centric model sees design as informed by research and knowledge. However, research and knowledge are brought into the design process by the judgment and common sense of the designers – by designers “thinking on their feet” – by the rational model.

Descriptions of design activities

At least two views of action design are consistent with the action-centric perspective. Both involve three basic activities.

In the reflection-in-action paradigm , designers alternate between ” framing “, “making moves”, and “making moves”. “Framing” refers to conceptualizing the problem, ie, defining goals and objectives. A “move” is an attempt design decision. The evaluation process can lead to further moves in the design. [11]

In the sense-making-coevolution-implementation framework, designers alternate between its three titular activities. Sensemaking includes both framing and Implementation is the process of constructing the design object. Coevolution is “the process where the design agent is added to its mental picture of the design object based on its mental picture of the context, and vice versa”. [25]

The concept of the design cycle is understood as a circular time structure, [26] which can start with the thinking of an idea, then expressing it by the use of visual or verbal means of communication (design tools), the sharing and perceiving of the expressed idea, and finally starting a new cycle with the critical rethinking of the perceived idea. Anderson points out that this concept emphasizes the importance of the means of expression, which at the same time are means of perception of any design ideas. [27]

Discipline Design

  • Applied arts
  • Architecture
  • Automotive design
  • Biological design
  • Communication design
  • Design configuration
  • Design management
  • Engineering design
  • Experience design
  • Fashion design
  • Game design
  • Graphic design
  • Architecture Information
  • Information design
  • Industrial design
  • Instructional design
  • Interaction design
  • Interior design
  • Landscape architecture
  • Lighting design
  • Modular design
  • Motion graphic design
  • Organization design
  • Product design
  • Process design
  • Design service
  • Software design
  • Sound design
  • Space design
  • Strategic design
  • Systems architecture
  • Systems design
  • Systems modeling
  • Urban design
  • User experience design
  • Visual design
  • Web design

Philosophies and studies of design

There are countless philosophies for guiding design as well as different aspects of design among schools of thought which? ] and among practicing designers. [28] Design philosophies are usually for determining design goals. The most holistic influential utopiangoals. Design goals are usually for guiding design. However, the term may be used to determine the purpose of design, perhaps John Heskett, a 20th-century British writer on design, “Design, stripped to its essence, can be defined in the human nature to shape and make our environment in ways lives. ” [29]

Philosophies for guiding design

Design philosophies are fundamental guiding principles that dictate how to design approaches to his / her practice. Reflections on material culture, and Environmental Concerns ( sustainable design ) can guide design philosophy. One example is the First Things First manifesto qui Was lancé dans le graphic design community and states “We propose a reversal of Priorities in favor of more Useful, lasting and democratic forms of communication – has MindShift away from product marketing and Toward the Exploration and Production The scope of the debate is one of the most important things in the world, and one of the most important things in the world.[30]

In the Sciences of the Artificial by polymath Herbert A. Simon, the author asserts design to be a meta-discipline of all professions. Designers who are not only professional designers, but also those who are in the business of the arts, and Design, so construed, is the core of all the currencies of the world, and is the main mark of the distinction between the professions of the sciences and the schools of engineering. schools of architecture, business, education, law, and medicine, are all centrally concerned with the process of design. ” [31]

Approaches to design

A design approach is a general philosophy that may or may not include a guide for specific methods. Some are to guide the overall goal of the design. Other approaches are to guide the tendencies of the designer. A combination of approaches may be used if they do not conflict.

Some popular approaches include:

  • Sociotechnical system design, a philosophy and tools for participatory designing work and support processes – for organizational purpose, quality, safety, economics and customer requirements
  • KISS principle , (Keep it Simple Stupid), which strives to eliminate unnecessary complications.
  • There is more to one way to do it (TIMTOWTDI), a philosophy to allow multiple methods of doing the same thing.
  • Use-centered design , which focuses on the goals and tasks associated with the use of the artifact, rather than focusing on the end user.
  • User-centered design , which focuses on the needs, wants, and limitations of the end user of the artifact.
  • Critical design uses artifacts as an embodied criticism or commentary on existing values, morals, and practices in a culture.
  • Service design or organizing a product and service.
  • Transgenerational design , the practice of making and the environment and the environment.
  • Speculative design, the speculative design process does not necessarily define a specific problem to solve, but establishes a provocative starting point from which a design process emerges. The result is an evolution of fluctuating iteration and reflection using designed objects to provoke questions and stimulate discussion in academic and research settings.

Methods of designing

Main article: Design methods

Design methods is a broad area that focuses on:

  • Exploring possibilities and constraints by focusing critical thinking skills to research and define problem spaces for Existing products or services -or the establishment of new categories (see aussi Brainstorming )
  • Redefining the specifications of design solutions (graphic, industrial, architectural, etc.);
  • Managing the process of exploring, defining, creating artificial continually over time
  • Possible prototyping scenarios, or solutions that incrementally or significantly improve the inherited situation
  • Trendspotting; understanding the trend process.


The word “design” is often considered ambiguous, as it is applied in varying contexts.

The new terminal at Barajas airport in Madrid , Spain

Design and art

Today, the term design is widely associated with the applied arts as initiated by Raymond Loewy and teachings at the Bauhaus and Ulm School of Design (HfG Ulm) in Germany during the 20th century.

The boundaries between art and design are blurred, largely due to a range of applications both for the term ‘art’ and the term ‘design’. Applied arts has been used as an umbrella to define fields of industrial design , graphic design , fashion design , etc. The term ‘ decorative arts ‘ is a traditional term used in the context of discourses to describe craft objects, and also within the umbrella of applied arts . In graphic arts , the distinction is often made between fine art and commercial art, based on the context in which the work is produced and how it is traded.

To a degree, some methods for creating work, such as employing intuition, are shared across the disciplines within the applied arts and fine art . Mark Getlein, writer, suggests the principles of design are “almost instinctive”, “built-in”, “natural”, and part of “our sense of ‘rightness’.” [32] However, the intended application and context of the resulting will vary greatly.

A drawing for a booster engine for steam locomotives . Engineering is applied to design, with emphasis on function and the use of mathematics and science.

Design and engineering

In engineering , design is a component of the engineering process. Many overlapping methods and processes can be seen when comparing Product design , Industrial design and Engineering . The American Heritage Dictionary defines design as: “To conceive or fashion in the mind; invent,” and “To formulate a plan” , and defines engineering as: “The application of scientific and mathematical principles to practical ends as design, manufacture , and operation of efficient and economical structures, machines, processes, and systems. ” [33] [34]Both are forms of problem-solving with a distinction being the application of “scientific and mathematical principles”. The scientific focus of engineering in practice, however, has raised the importance of “human-centered” fields of design. [35] How much science is applied in a design is a question of what is considered ” science “. Along with the question of what is considered science, there is social science versus natural science . Scientists at Xerox PARC made the distinction of design versus engineering at “moving minds” versus “moving atoms” (probably in contradiction to the origin of term “engineering – engineer” from Latin “in genius” meaning of a “genius” what assumes existence of a ” mind “not of an” atom “).

Jonathan Ive has received several awards for his design of Apple Inc.products like this MacBook. In some design fields, personal computers are also used for both design and production

Design and production

The relationship between design and production is one of planning and executing. In theory, the plan should anticipate and compensate for potential problems in the execution process. Design involves problem-solving and creativity . In contrast, production involves a routine or pre-planned process. A design may also be a plan that does not include a production or engineering processes. In Some cases, it May be Unnecessary or impractical to expect a designer with a broad Multidisciplinary knowledge required for Such designs also have to have detailed Specialized knowledge of how to Produce the product.

Design and production are intertwined in many creative professional careers, meaning problem-solving is part of execution and the reverse. As the cost of rearrangement increases, the need for For example, a high-budget project, such as a skyscraper , requires separating (design) architecture from (production) construction . A Low-budget project, Such As a locally printed office party invitation flyer , can be rearranged and printed Dozens of times at the low cost of A Few sheets of paper, A Few drops of ink, and less than one hour’s pay of a desktop publisher .

This is not to say that production never involves problem-solving or creativity, nor does design always involve creativity. Designs are rarely perfect and are sometimes repetitive. The imperfection of a design may be a production position (eg production artist , construction worker ) with utilizing creativity or problem-solving skills to compensate for what was overlooked in the design process. Likewise, a design may be a simple repetition (copy) of a known preexisting solution, requiring minimal, if any, creativity or problem-solving skills from the designer.

An example of a business workflow process using Business Process Modeling Notation .

Process design

See also: Method engineering

“Process design” (in contrast to “design process” mentioned above ) refers to the planning of a procedure of the process. Processes (in general) are treated as a product of design, not the method of design. The term originated with the industrial designing of chemical processes . With the Increasing Complexities of the age information , consultants and executives-have found the term Useful to describe the design of business processes as well as manufacturing processes .

Six stages of the Design Process

  • Research – it is the first step of the design process. It includes the study of potential users, their behavior, goals, motivation, and needs [36] .
  • Information Architecture (IA) – is the second step in the design process that comes after research. It’s structural design of shared information. This course leads to increased usability and finding and computing of digital products [37] .
  • Wireframing – This step in the UX design refers to an illustration or diagram of a website, software, or the app page. Wireframes rarely contain color, images, or styling because their job is to help the UX team understand and establish relationships among different websites [38] .
  • Prototyping – the result of this stage is a draft version of the website, application or digital product.
  • Visual Design (or Graphic Design ) – is the use of imagery, color, shapes, typography, and form to enhance usability and improve user experience [39] .
  • Testing (or Usability Testing ) – is a core part of the overall UX design process. It is a technique used in user-centered interaction design to evaluate a product by testing it on users.

See also

  • Design elements and principles
  • Design-based learning
  • Design thinking
  • Evidence-based design


  1. Jump up^ Dictionary meanings in theCambridge Dictionary of American English, atDictionary.com(meanings 1-5 and 7-8) and atAskOxford(esp.verbs).
  2. Jump up^ Brinkkemper, S. (1996). “Method engineering: information systems development methods and tools”. Information and Software Technology . 38(4): 275-280. doi : 10.1016 / 0950-5849 (95) 01059-9 .
  3. Jump up^ Ralph P. and Wand, Y. (2009). A proposal for a formal definition of the design concept. In Lyytinen, K., Loucopoulos, P.,Mylopoulos, J., and Robinson, W., editors, Design Requirements Workshop (LNBIP 14), pp. 103-136. Springer-Verlag, p. 109doi:10.1007 / 978-3-540-92966-6_6.
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  8. ^ Jump up to:b Braha, D. and Maimon, O. (1998) A Mathematical Theory of Design, Springer.
  9. Jump up^ Dorst and Dijkhuis 1995, p. 261
  10. ^ Jump up to:b Brooks 2010
  11. ^ Jump up to:c Schön 1983
  12. ^ Jump up to:d Ralph 2010
  13. Jump up^ Dorst and Cross 2001
  14. Jump up^ Newell and Simon 1972; Simon 1969
  15. Jump up^ Pahl and Beitz 1996
  16. Jump up^ Royce 1970
  17. Jump up^ Bourque and Dupuis 2004
  18. Jump up^ Pahl et al. 2007
  19. Jump up^ Cross, N., 2006. T211 Design and Designing: Block 2, p. 99. Milton Keynes: The Open University.
  20. Jump up^ Ullman, David G. (2009) The Mechanical Design Process, McGraw Hill, 4th editionISBN 0-07-297574-1
  21. ^ Jump up to:b Cross et al. 1992; Ralph 2010; Schön 1983
  22. Jump up^ Brooks 2010; McCracken and Jackson 1982
  23. Jump up^ Beck et al. 2001
  24. Jump up^ Truex et al. 2000
  25. Jump up^ Ralph 2010, p. 67
  26. Jump up^ Thomas Fischer:Design Enigma. A typographical metaphor for enigmatic processes, including designing, in: T. Fischer, K. De Biswas, JJ Ham, R. Naka, WX Huang, Beyond Codes and Pixels: Proceedings of the 17th International Conference on Computer-Aided Architectural Design Research Asia, p. 686
  27. Jump up^ Jane Anderson:Architectural Design, Architecture Basics 03, Lausanne, AVA academia, 2011,ISBN 978-2-940411-26-9, p. 40
  28. Jump up^ Holm, Ivar (2006). Ideas and Beliefs in Architecture and Industrial Design: How attitudes, orientations and core assumptions shape the built environment. Oslo School of Architecture and Design. ISBN 82-547-0174-1.
  29. Jump up^ Heskett, John (2002). Toothpicks and Logos: Design in Everyday Life . Oxford University Press.
  30. Jump up^ First Things First 2000 design manifesto. manifesto published jointly by 33 signatories in: Adbusters, the AIGA journal, Blueprint, Emigre, Eye, Form, Items fall 1999 / spring 2000
  31. Jump up^ Simon (1996), p. 111.
  32. Jump up^ Mark Getlein,Living With Art, 8th ed. (New York: 2008) 121.
  33. Jump up^ American Psychological Association (APA):Design. The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. Retrieved January 10, 2007
  34. Jump up^ American Psychological Association (APA):engineering. The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. Retrieved January 10, 2007
  35. Jump up^ Faste 2001
  36. Jump up^ “Stop overthinking UX and try the coffee shop test” . VentureBeat.
  37. Jump up^ “Design Process” . Perfectial.
  38. Jump up^ “The UX Design Process: An Actionable Guide To Your First Job In UX” . CareerFoundry.
  39. Jump up^ “Visual Design” . UXBooth.