I recently read a transcript from a speech delivered by Dieter Rams in 1976 on the attributes of good design. Mr. Rams was trained as an architect prior to becoming an electronics designer at Braun in 1955. If you would like to read the entire transcript (which I highly recommend) you can find it on Fast Design. It is very interesting to read his thoughts on everything from connecting with customers to environmental consciousness.
The ten principles for good design as defined by Mr. Rams are applicable to so many facets of life. I believe either purposely or not we have been adhering to the majority of these design principles in our work to date. Regardless, it is quite refreshing to see the context of what Mr. Rams felt was important in 1976 with his approach and as a reminder for us today. With our focus on design, we are compelled to ensure these principles are implemented on each project engagement.
Ten Principles for good design – Dieter Rams.
- Good design is innovative
- Good design is honest
- Good design makes a product useful
- Good design is long-lasting
- Good design is aesthetic
- Good design is thorough, down to the last detail
- Good design makes a product understandable
- Good design is environmentally-friendly
- Good design is unobtrusive
- Good design is as little design as possible
In closing, here is an excerpt from Mr. Rams speech, “The introduction of good design is needed for a company to be successful. However, our definition of success may be different to yours. Striving for good design is of social importance as it means, amongst other things, absolutely avoiding waste.”