The software designer

April 18th 2016

The separation of the user interface from the overall design process fundamentally disenfranchises designers at the expense of programmers and relegates them to the status of second-class citizens.

Yes. There are so many amazing bits of commentary packed into Mitchell Kapor's manifesto delivered in 1990. It's fascinating to read this piece more than a quarter-century later and compare it to the state of software design today. So many of the same battles are still being fought inside businesses: explaining what software design is and why it's important, the role of design alongside engineering, the need for proper design education, the usefulness of prototyping and design tools...it goes on.

Naturally, programmers quickly lose respect for people who fail to understand fundamental technical issues. The answer to this is not to exclude designers from the process, but to make sure that they have a sound mastery of technical fundamentals, so that genuine communication with programmers is possible.

Should designers learn to co– ...oops, sorry.

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