Sessions at dConstruct 2010 about Design

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Thursday 2nd September 2010

  • Defining A Flexible Process

    by Simon Collison

    Simon has spent a decade working with some of the most demanding projects and clients known to man (with scars to prove it), and has established a rigorous yet flexible approach to getting the best from the brief, the client and the creative team, whilst never compromising on audience needs.

    Theoretical, practical and hands-on, Simon’s workshop will follow the project journey from beginning to launch—and beyond. You’ll learn about backbone and research, collaboration, methodology, convention, prototyping, testing, narrative and much more, with a strong emphasis on maximising creativity throughout. Whatever your experience, you’ll learn common sense and engaging approaches for dealing with client projects big or small.

    At 9:00am to 5:30pm, Thursday 2nd September

Friday 3rd September 2010

  • The Designful Company

    by Marty Neumeier

    In an era of fast-moving markets and leap-frogging innovators, companies can no longer merely “unlock” wealth. Today they have to actively “create” wealth, or end up in the fossil layers of business history. As a result, brand-builders have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to play a key role in the next management revolution—the rise of the designful company.

    In his session, Marty will explain why design thinking—in its broadest sense—will become the new best practice, and how you can leverage your unique position as a brand-builder to transform the way business does business in the 21st century.

    At 10:15am to 11:00am, Friday 3rd September

  • Boil, Simmer, Reduce

    by Brendan Dawes

    The actual process of design, the path you take on the way to creating something, is in many ways a “meta object” that can be applied to any design problem.

    Ever since his first experiences with the humble ZX81 back in the early eighties, Brendan has continued to explore the interplay of people, code, design and art both in his role leading the team at mN and on brendandawes.com, a personal space where he publishes random thoughts, toys and projects created from an eclectic mix of digital and analog objects.

    In this session Brendan talks through his three step process: boil—filling your head with many ideas and possibilties, simmer—taking time to consider, and finally reduce—removing things till there’s nothing left to take away.

    At 11:00am to 11:30am, Friday 3rd September

  • The Auteur Theory of Design

    by John Gruber

    Why is it that some projects never rise to the level of the talent of those who made it? It’s oft said regarding good work that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. But sometimes the whole is less than the sum of its parts—a company or team comprised of good people, but yet which produces work that isn’t good.

    In his session, John will explain his theory to explain how this happens—in both directions—based on the longstanding collaborative art of filmmaking. Learn how to recognise when a project is doomed to mediocrity, and, more importantly, how best to achieve collaborative success.

    At 2:30pm to 3:00pm, Friday 3rd September

  • Jam Session: What Improvisation Can Teach Us About Design

    by Hannah Donovan

    Have you ever had a spontaneous creative triumph, perfectly in sync with your team?

    A passionate believer in improvisation as a design skill, Hannah’s session will talk about the importance of this technique in her own design process and what lessons can be borrowed from improvised music.

    From the jazz masters to the humble basement band practice, musical concepts such as timing, structure, rolls and expression have many lessons for designers creating an off-the-cuff interface.

    Hannah will explore how the methods of music translate for a design/development team, as well as sharing personal stories and techniques for those times when you need a bit of a jam session.

    At 3:00pm to 3:30pm, Friday 3rd September

  • Kerning, Orgasms & Those Goddamned Japanese Toothpicks

    by Merlin Mann

    Freud popularised the term, “The Narcissism of Minor Differences”, to describe how adjacent villages—identical for all practical purposes—would struggle to amplify their tiniest distinctions in order to justify how much they despised one other. So you have to guess how much he would have enjoyed design mailing lists. And, Perl.

    Truth is, to the untrained (un-washed, un-nuanced, un-Paul-Rand’d, and un-Helvetica’d) outsider, discourse in the design community can sometimes look a lot like a cluster of tightly-wound Freudian villages.

    So, how is the role of design perceived by the people who are using the stuff you make? What role (if any) should users expect in the process of how their world is made and remade? What contexts might be useful in helping us turn all of our obsessions into useful and beautiful work?

    Can an Aeron chair ever be truly ‘Black’? Will there ever be a way to get Marketing people to stop calling typefaces ‘fonts’? And, when, at last, will the international community finally speak as one regarding the overuse of Mistral and stock photos of foreshortened Asian women?

    By leveraging his uniquely unqualified understanding of design, Merlin will propose some promising patterns for fording the gap between end-users and the unhappy-looking people in costly European eyeglasses who are designing their world.

    Is there hope? Come to Brighton, pull up a flawlessly-executed mid-century-Modern seating affordance, and we'll see what we can figure out together. One village to another.

    At 5:00pm to 5:45pm, Friday 3rd September