A Designer’s Dilemma

Designer2You just got hired at a design agency called Wingo. It has an excellent reputation. You’re a junior designer but you know that after a year here you can get a job just about anywhere.

You’re boss puts a new project on your desk one day. It’s for a healthcare agency called PharmaWorld.

PharmaWorld is best known for creating important new technologies, like insulin regulators, and selling them at 5x the market price.

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Your decisions have consequences, and depending on your choice, here is what happens:

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Next, you need to pick a partner to work on this project with you.

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Either approach you take, doesn’t mean you forget the importance of synthesizing and seeing underlying patterns of behavior.

The people you spoke with told you, “I don’t know what I want, I’m just lonely all the time.”

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You discover a pattern of social isolation among the depressed.

You decide to solve for depression by creating a robot that can provide emotional support. You remembered that people feel the effects of human like interaction even when expressed by technology (Cugelman and Weinryb) and really think this idea will work. Choose your own Adventure copy.003

PharmaWorld

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Money

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Robot cleaning

This design really excites you because it aims to create what is possible but does not yet exist (buchanan)

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The reality is that design work is complicated, and often the “right” answer depends. Even when a designer starts off with the best of intentions, they can get lost in the process. It’s important for designers to find an internal “North Star”, a guiding set of principles that influences their work.

We must ask ourselves: What change am I really out to create? Who am I here to serve? And, what is the impact of the artifacts I unleash into the world?