Simplicity, redux

Earlier this year, I wrote a post about simplicity, and how it often takes more time and effort to make a simple product. So, only a couple of months later, I find myself musing on simplicity once again, but this time how product designers define and use the concept of simplicity.

Simon spends much of his article explaining why simplicity is not about fewer features. The old adage, “less is more,” just doesn’t cut it as a way of defining simplicity. He quotes other designers as they struggle to create simple product designs, but I like where he got to and what he said in his own words:

Simple is contextual. Simple is culturally dependent. Simple, in every facet of the word, is subjective.

The best way to decrease complexity in our designs is to regularly observe how people interact with our products and services; so as to constantly challenge our inherent assumptions about what we believe might be simple.

Simple writing is not about fewer words or fewer sentences; simple writing is about the right words, in the right order, and for the right reader!

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