image of gopuff’s marketing screen
image of gopuff’s marketing screen

Last week, I examined the app goPuff and how well it adheres to Dieter Rams’ first 5 design principles. These principles stated that good design is innovative, aesthetic, unobtrusive, and makes a product usable and understandable. You can check out the first half of my goPuff assessment here.

This week I’m going to hone in on the last 5 principles that good design must adhere to and see how goPuff stacks up against them. These final 5 principles insist that good design is

  1. honest
  2. long-lasting
  3. thorough to the last detail
  4. environmentally-friendly
  5. minimal

6. Is goPuff’s design honest?

I think a key part of what this question is after is that “it does not attempt to manipulate the consumer with promises that cannot be kept”. As illustrated by these examples, dishonesty in design can happen when you try to link a product to something else that makes its purpose or impact seem different from what it really is. …


image of gopuff’s marketing screen
image of gopuff’s marketing screen

Ever since COVID hit, I like to think that I’ve become a delivery app connoisseur. You can get pretty much everything you’d ever want or need through one app or another. Grocery delivery is just the beginning; if you ever find yourself needing a 5-in-1 indoor grill with an air fryer, there are delivery apps that will deliver that to you within an hour or two. The future is now, my friends.

I’ve tried out apps like Postmates and Instacart many times, but within the past year, I’ve gotten fairly dependent on goPuff, a snack/household goods/alcohol delivery app. I’ve found it’s one of the least expensive to order from and delivers my goods the quickest. …


Illustration of Beth Harmon, main character from “The Queen’s Gambit”
Illustration of Beth Harmon, main character from “The Queen’s Gambit”
Image Credit: Muti Creative Studio

Like millions of others, I recently binged and fell in love with the Netflix limited drama series The Queen’s Gambit, a story about a young woman and chess phenom Beth Harmon. In this blog post, I might spoil the ending of the show, but it isn’t like it’s a mystery show and there’s some crazy twist that will ruin it for you. So proceed with caution.

I’ve always been drawn to shows, books, movies, etc. that highlight people who are obsessively passionate about what they do. I have cried through multiple episodes of Chef’s Table, every single year of Olympics women’s artistic gymnastics, and while watching videos of Gustavo Dudamel conducting — the man has more passion in a single lock of his beautiful curly hair than most people possess in their entire body. …


image of a man with his head on his laptop in a display of defeat
image of a man with his head on his laptop in a display of defeat
Image credit: https://jsginc.com/tag/job-search/

Searching for a job is hard. Searching for a job in a new field is very hard. Searching for a job in a new field during a pandemic and economic recession is playing the job hunt game on Expert mode. And based on the hundreds of other blog posts and articles I’ve seen out there, it’s quite clear that those in a similar position are struggling with their mental health in a serious way.

Just a few weeks ago, I wrote about 10 UX/Product Design challenges that we designers can work on to keep busy and keep advancing our skills while looking for a job. I look back at the girl who wrote that article and think, “oh, you sweet summer child”. Because truthfully, this job hunt is unlike any I’ve ever experienced. …


A mood board with warm, autumnal colors and themes
A mood board with warm, autumnal colors and themes

I love mood boards. They are probably my favorite part of the ideation process when it comes to visual design. Putting one together reminds me of being 19 years old in my dorm room spending literal hours on Pinterest curating boards centered around a certain aesthetic. It is just pure fun to me to capture a feeling with imagery, text, items, art, and more. (Note: mood boards can be both physical and digital — I will focus on digital.)

But when I started my design education and mood boards were a part of the curriculum, I honestly viewed them as a little amateurish. I thought they were cute and fun but I wasn’t totally sold on their necessity during the design process. Especially when we had style tiles, which were in my eyes a more fleshed-out version of mood boards. It felt repetitive to do both, and I wasn’t really sure how much my design could benefit from taking the time to also do mood boards. …


Don’t devalue your experience and settle for less.

Image for post
Image for post
Image credit: Egor Kosten, https://dribbble.com/egorkostent

I have been working in technology in a variety of roles for around 5 years and at the beginning of this year, I decided to make the official switch to work as a Product Designer. I recently completed a 7-month design program and have been on the job hunt since around August. I have never had a job title explicitly related to design.

And still, I refuse to call myself a Junior Designer.

I acknowledge that I do have some relevant background, but I don’t see why anyone, regardless of their number of years spent in design, should call themselves a Junior Designer. …


Image of an illustration of a UX designer working on a persona
Image of an illustration of a UX designer working on a persona
Image credit: qubstudio.com

Coming from the product world, I’ve had extensive familiarity with personas for quite some time. From a product management perspective, I understood that designers generally created them in early ideation or inception meetings. Then, more than half the time, the rest of the team would forget about them within a month or two.

As a product manager just starting out, I thought maybe this was just one of those corporate things that people do because it looks nice, not because it is entirely useful. …


image of a mind with puzzle pieces inside it and a cloud of other images surrounding it
image of a mind with puzzle pieces inside it and a cloud of other images surrounding it
Image credit: stimulatinghealthcare.net

Cognitive biases can be defined as “systematic ways in which the context and framing of information influence individuals’ judgment and decision-making”. More simply put, they are little tricks our mind likes to play when trying to understand new information. They can change the way we think about, interact with, and design a product without us even realizing that it’s happening. And most of the time they point us in the opposite direction from objective logic or rationality. …


As a recent design bootcamp program graduate, I knew looking for a great design job would be a challenge. I anticipated that after I finished school, I wouldn’t be working my dream role immediately. I’d be happy having a job at a good company with teammates that were decent enough.

What I didn’t anticipate was being 3 months out of school without any job at all. To preserve my ego I will blame COVID entirely. But really, what company would want to take a chance on a brand new designer in a time where taking a chance on anything seems especially risky? …


Cartoon of a head with a bomb as a brain
Cartoon of a head with a bomb as a brain
Image credit: The enterpriser’s project

In order to be a good UX designer, I believe you have to be a decent person. Maybe I’m just naive, but when your job is understanding how people think, feel, and behave, I assume that you’re pretty empathetic. That you genuinely care about people because you want to build them something that makes their lives better. I can’t think of many things that are kinder than someone genuinely listening, understanding, and helping as much as they can.

But even the kindest, most empathetic people have the capacity to exhibit toxic traits. We are only human, after all. And there appear to be some mindsets and behaviors that are especially toxic for UX designers as we seek to collaborate, learn, build, and connect with our users and colleagues. …

About

Devin Ross

Reader, writer, designer, singer, animal lover.

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