Good product design is probably the successful combination of meeting customer needs, physical and engineering constraints and aesthetics. The process which brings these three variables together fascinates me, in part because of its critical importance to entrepreneurship--whether it be a product, a website or a user manual Good design also makes the world a better place and it always reminds me that genius exists.
One of the best design firms in the world is Frog Design, which was founded by Helmut Esslinger (who I wrote about here). Frog is perhaps most famous for their design work on early Apple products. The Frog blog, design mind, is an eclectic collection of posts on a wide range of subjects. When they discuss new products and the fundamentals of design I think it is akin to sitting with Buddha or Aristotle and listening to them lecture.
Today's design mind post, Touchfrastructure Meets the HypePad, is a new take on understanding the iPad (which Frog did not design). In summary, they believe that the iPad is a service and not a product. This notion gives a whole new slant to how computing may evolve. I thnk it is consistent with my view that computing is becoming an appliance industry (see yesterday's post) but the definition of an appliance may need further thought.