On 01/28/2011 05:27 AM, Alexandre Prokoudine wrote:
> Speaking of pretty interfaces, both MusE and OOM2 need a revamp. OOM2
Heh, I'm flattered.
There's a lack of design competence, but also a lack of developer time
to implement design and/or a lack of better tools/infrastructure to make
that less of an issue.
Since a while now I'm thinking the solution can't be that I (or few
others) do more, continue to not earn money, try to clone myself ... Not
that I think of myself as being irreplaceable regarding my skills, but I
do feel lonely here, while I know where to look, if i want to feel like
The incredible good fortune and honor I had to see several of my
concepts being implemented doesn't lend itself as a model for the wider
The way to become a Free Software developer seems to be clear enough
(not that there's no room for improvement), motivation seems to be OK.
Not so for Designers.
It seems people who pick up coding tend to have fewer illusions about
their skills and the quality level of their output and that there is
always a long path forward, things to learn. Or maybe that's just my bias.
Anyway: I think design in the FS realm fails on several levels.
Developers and the general audience *tend* to not understand how it
permeates everything, how it is pretty much defining and solving
problems in a top-down manner.
Instead there's this making-things-pretty thinking, the usability means
dumbing things down thinking and an unhealthy focus on familiarity
mistaken for being what's "intuitive".
Usually, when any well known project opens a venue to discuss design,
the result is a flood of opinions. But bring up a tricky issue, where no
pre-produced mere opinions match and you either get silence or pure
idiocy. Oh, and don't bother to push for formal processes, clear goals,
requirements, evaluating alternatives ... that's all just bureaucracy.
Counter reactions to that tend to lead to closed circles, perhaps
productive for a while, but becoming echo chambers.
Designer who want to try some not so usual approaches will soon find
them in a situation where learning to program will seem more worthwhile
than trying to convince developers. After only few steps they will start
to understand why developers don't tend to jump up and implement
something in an afternoon ...
But there are only so damn few hours in the day! The best we could have
might be developers with more design thinking, designers with more
technical knowledge, and much better tools that blur the lines between
mockups, prototypes and final implementations. Here, we should learn
from CAD tools regarding dealing with constraints and parameterization ,
Flash (the authoring tool) and Smalltalk environments like Pharo.
I have a still vague vision, something like a mix between Etherpad, a
wiki, bug tracker, sites like github and stackoverflow. A place where
design needs meet design solutions. With design methods and knowledge
baked into the infrastructure, both for educational effect and as an
accelerator. Where unfounded opinion, noise, sinks to the bottom, fast.
What a longish off-topic, took-too-long mail, but I do feel better now ;)
thorwil's design for free software:
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