How do you avoid canned designs?

12 Oct 2009 - 10:12am
4 years ago
3 replies
748 reads
Mashhoor Aldubayan
2009

Hi,

When you work on two sites that that share the same goals, top tasks
and audience; would try to come up with THE optimal architecture and
interactions for both and just play around with their
aesthetics/branding to make them look different? or would you
experiment with each of them until they end up with different layouts
that work?

This is becoming an issue with some of my projects, since I keep
reusing layouts that worked. And even though I get pretty good
results from that that save me time, but I don't want to end up
providing my clients with canned designs.

Your input is much appreciated

Comments

13 Oct 2009 - 3:00am
Thomas Petersen
2008

I would look for how those two distinguish themselves and then use
that to create two different solutions. There is always something
that makes them different. That should be enough to make you able to
reuse some of the design patterns while still providing that USP for
the specific companies.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Posted from the new ixda.org
http://www.ixda.org/discuss?post=46649

13 Oct 2009 - 10:02am
Chris Grayson
2009

Well, generally speaking, all cars have four wheels on the ground, and
the driver sits in a chair with a steering wheel -- same user
interface. But you won't confuse a Corvette for a dump-truck. There
is a lot that can be done with design, even with a near identical IA.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Posted from the new ixda.org
http://www.ixda.org/discuss?post=46649

13 Oct 2009 - 10:32am
Scott McDaniel
2007

This reminds me of the point of this article:
http://www.rbguy.dailykos.com/storyonly/2009/10/11/791270/-Sometimes-They-Even-Talk-Alike
(Despite the url, it's not an explicitly political article and I'm not
pushing politics here)
"In 2008, the Toyota Prius was the best selling gas-electric hybrid
car in the world. In Japan, it was frequently at the top of the list
of bestselling cars overall. In 2009, Honda introduced their new
hybrid model, which looked... a lot like the Toyota Prius. The reason
for this wasn't some plot among Honda designers to confuse their
product with the Toyota. It was merely a case of form following
function. Both automakers were trying to craft a vehicle that
maximized available interior space, and provided the best gas mileage
possible. To reach that second goal, they needed to minimize the drag
caused by air flowing over the car. The result was two vehicles that,
if not identical, could pass for siblings.

The same rules hold true in many areas of commerce. An Apple iPhone
looks a lot like a HTC Touch looks a lot like a Blackberry Storm,
because all of them are trying to give their users the largest area of
screen possible while keeping the shape and size of the device
suitable for the average pocket. From bicycles to washing machines,
there are few pieces of technology that really stand out from the
crowd. Chances are that two items designed for the same task will
have very similar forms."

It then extends the description into evolutionary biology:
"The reason that Ichthyosaurs look much like dolphins is because both
are performing the same role in a similar environment. Both are
predators that hunt their prey in the ocean. The large eyes come
because sea water is clear and sight is an important aspect of
tracking and capturing fast-moving fish in shallow water (those few
species of dolphins that live in the muddy waters of rivers are either
nearly or completely blind). The long snout filled with banks of
sharp, narrow teeth is an excellent mechanism for catching fish. Most
of all, both had the same major problem — moving quickly and
efficiently through water. "

And so on...

Wall of text brought to you by realization that I could sometimes
contribute something besides being snarky!

Cheers,
Scott

On Tue, Oct 13, 2009 at 4:02 AM, Chris Grayson <email at chrisgrayson.com> wrote:
> Well, generally speaking, all cars have four wheels on the ground, and
> the driver sits in a chair with a steering wheel -- same user
> interface. But you won't confuse a Corvette for a dump-truck. There
> is a lot that can be done with design, even with a near identical IA.
>
>
> . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
> Posted from the new ixda.org
> http://www.ixda.org/discuss?post=46649
>
>
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
> List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help
>

--
"You always have the carny connection." - Clair High

Syndicate content Get the feed