Design & Philosophy

The Laws of Simplicity (Simplicity: Design, Technology, Business, Life)

Finally, we are learning that simplicity equals sanity. We're rebelling against technology that's too complicated, DVD players with too many menus, and software accompanied by 75-megabyte "read me" manuals. The iPod's clean gadgetry has made simplicity hip. But sometimes we find ourselves caught up in the simplicity paradox: we want something that's simple and easy to use, but also does all the complex things we might ever want it to do.

Machine Beauty: Elegance And The Heart Of Technology

When something works well, you can feel it; there is a sense of rightness to it. We call that rightness beauty, and it ought to be the single most important component of design.This recognition is at the heart of David Gelernter’s witty argued essay, Machine Beauty, which defines beauty as an inspired mating of simplicity and power. You can see it in a Bauhaus chair, the Hoover Dam, or an Emerson radio circa 1930.

In Praise of Shadows

An essay on aesthetics by the Japanese novelist, this book explores architecture, jade, food, and even toilets, combining an acute sense of the use of space in buildings. The book also includes descriptions of laquerware under candlelight and women in the darkness of the house of pleasure.

 

Masterworks of Technology: The Story of Creative Engineering, Architecture, and Design

Human beings have always tried to find ways to make life easier. In ancient times, all but a privileged few could count on slow, hard, physical labour to account for the bulk of their waking hours. Yet one of the gifts of the human race is the ability to innovate, to envision and then create the technology that allows work to be done easier, faster, more thoroughly, and more consistently.

The Order of Things: An Archaeology of the Human Sciences

When one defines "order" as a sorting of priorities, it becomes beautifully clear as to what Foucault is doing here. With virtuoso showmanship, he weaves an intensely complex history of thought. He dips into literature, art, economics and even biology in The Order of Things, possibly one of the most significant, yet most overlooked, works of the twentieth century. Eclipsed by his later work on power and discourse, nonetheless it was The Order of Things that established Foucault's reputation as an intellectual giant.

Evolution

Karim Rashid, IDSA is redesigning the world we live in one design at a time—or, perhaps more accurately, thousands of objects at a time. As one of the most prolific designers of his generation, Rashid is largely credited with bringing design to the masses. His bestselling 'Oh Chair' and 'Garbo' rubbish bin brought the supple curves and bright colours of high design into millions of living rooms and offices around the world.

The New Everyday: Views on Ambient Intelligence

What is Ambient Intelligence? Is it embedding technology into objects? How does it incorporate or cater for universal desires, complex social relationships, different value systems? What about individuals' likes and dislikes, or the sustainability of economic and natural ecosystems? This book explores the increasingly relevant phenomenon of Ambient Intelligence in the form of essays by experts with illustrations.

 

The Invisible Computer: Why Good Products Can Fail, the Personal Computer Is So Complex, and Information Appliances Are the Solution

Technologies have a life cycle, says Donald Norman, IDSA, and companies and their products must change as they pass from youth to maturity. Alas, the computer industry thinks it is still in its rebellious teenage years, exulting in technical complexity. Customers want change. They are ready for products that offer convenience, ease of use, and pleasure. The technology should be invisible, hidden from sight.In this book, Norman shows why the computer is so difficult to use and why this complexity is fundamental to its nature.

Emotional Design: Why We Love (or Hate) Everyday Things

Did you ever wonder why cheap wine tastes better in fancy glasses? Why sales of Macintosh computers soared when Apple introduced the colorful iMac? New research on emotion and cognition has shown that attractive things really do work better, as Donald Norman amply demonstrates in this fascinating book, which has garnered acclaim everywhere from Scientific American to The New Yorker.

The Design of Future Things

In The Design of Future Things, best-selling author Donald A. Norman, IDSA, presents a revealing examination of smart technology, from smooth-talking GPS units to cantankerous refrigerators. Exploring the links between design and human psychology, he offers a consumer-oriented theory of natural human-machine interaction that can be put into practice by the engineers and industrial designers of tomorrow’s thinking machines.

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