It’s Not Web Design

Don Norman:

I would like to see web designers disappear and become designers. Web design was this specialized activity because we had these screens, we had this fixed format and we had to figure out how to display it so that it was understandable, usable, so you could find the stuff, so you could navigate the complex architecture of the website. On top of that, you had amazingly little control over what it really looked like on the screen.

Well, that lack of control is going to expand with the modern smartphones. They come now in all sizes and shapes. They come very small, to larger and larger and larger, and when they become too large we don’t call them a phone anymore, we call it a pad. But it’s really the same device, just getting larger and larger and larger. And pretty soon they’re on the wall, they’re big TV sets, or displayed, or projected. And so the designer’s job is much more complex and very, very necessary. But it’s not web design, it’s information design, communication design.

February 19, 2012