Software design specialization?

13 Nov 2005 - 4:45pm
8 years ago
1 reply
295 reads
russwilson
2005

I just read an article proposing the need
and desirability for vertical specialization in design.

It made me wonder -- as a designer, which areas
of specialization would be most strategic for my
own future? In other words, what vertical markets
are now and in the future in most need of good
software (software specifically for me) design?
Naturally, I am becoming an expert in the field
of my current employer, but what other fields should
I be looking into? Automotive? Financial? Does
anyone have any thoughts?

Russ

Russell Wilson | Director of Product Design | NetQoS, Inc. |
512-334-3725

Comments

14 Nov 2005 - 2:53pm
Larry Marine
2005

A bit of a tangent, but we already are seeing specialization in design. If
you consider that only 20 years ago, much of software design was typically
done by one group of people, the developers. But now there are 3 basic types
of design done by different folks:
1) Software Design - the technical side of things, making it do correctly
what its supposed to do. Best done by software developers.
2) Visual Design - The sizzle, branding and visual language side of the
problem. Making it look appealing. Best done by graphic artists.
3) Interaction Design - Understand what the product is supposed to do and
how its should interact with the user. Best done by interaction or usability
specialists.

As products become more complex, we start to see vertical specialization,
within the product as well as within each specialty. For instance, a medical
device might start to see specialization in how the device is used. One
group might design a basic, general practice tool whereas another group
might be tasked with developing a highly specialized tool, using the same
technology for a thoracic surgical environment.

Within the designer ranks, we see vertical specialization, such as different
types of usability specialists for requirements gathering, interface design,
and usability testing. The same is true for graphic artists and developers.

As far as what direction should you take? Your best bet is to take advantage
of your interests and expertise. The world will need folks everywhere, but
you are likely going to be more successful if you are motivated and doing
something you enjoy is very motivating. If you enjoy cars, learning about
the body, or environmental issues, then find something in those areas and go
forth and prosper.

Larry

----- Original Message -----
From: "Wilson, Russell" <Russell.Wilson at netqos.com>
To: <discuss at ixda.org>
Sent: Sunday, November 13, 2005 2:45 PM
Subject: [IxDA Discuss] Software design specialization?

> [Please voluntarily trim replies to include only relevant quoted
> material.]
>
>
> I just read an article proposing the need
> and desirability for vertical specialization in design.
>
> It made me wonder -- as a designer, which areas
> of specialization would be most strategic for my
> own future? In other words, what vertical markets
> are now and in the future in most need of good
> software (software specifically for me) design?
> Naturally, I am becoming an expert in the field
> of my current employer, but what other fields should
> I be looking into? Automotive? Financial? Does
> anyone have any thoughts?
>
> Russ
>
> Russell Wilson | Director of Product Design | NetQoS, Inc. |
> 512-334-3725
> ________________________________________________________________
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