In this online age, we view more and more things on our screen from our couch. Now that we all use the same services worldwide, such as Google and Facebook, there appears to be uniformity. Everything looks like it was conceived by the same designer. But that is a clear appearance, because design is more important than ever. It only works differently nowadays.
Photo by Ellywa
This famous red-blue chair was designed by Gerrit Rietveld in 1917, and now serves as the icon for De Stijl. Simple and modern. You wouldn't stick it on 1917. And you would not expect that this chair is comfortable. But, even without pillows, this is a comfortable chair.
Rietveld's goal was to make a chair that could be made by machine. Commercial thought so. But unfortunately this chair never went into mass production because of the idea among consumers that the sitting comfort was lacking. Only in 1972 did the Italian company Cassina take the chair into production, after the rights had been taken over.
The red-blue chair was made for massive production and comfortable to sit in. But the eye for customer perception was missing.
Design works differently online
With the internet revolution came the development of appification: having becomes using, everything becomes a service. From CDs to Spotify. Design is no longer exclusive. Everyone is online and can use your services. Internet makes mass use simple: making one time is using countless times.
Nowadays, design is caught online in marketing bingo total such as service design, design thinking and interaction design. Here it is recognized that ease of use and customer perception are the keys to success. Designed for use, putting the experience of the user at the center and seeing how you can stimulate which behavior independently of the logic.
Making mistakes is polishing
In the online world it's all about making mistakes. Because you learn from that. Continuous iteration. "Done is better than perfect," says Mark Zuckerberg. "Focus on the user and all else will follow" is the mantra at Google. They make variations, adaptations, try out new products and listen to their customers.
"Sitting is a verb," said Rietveld. "If you are tired, just lie down." He thought that sitting could cause a degree of discomfort. A chair was not just for comfort. That is admirable language for an iconic artist, but not for a chair designer who likes to see his chairs in all living rooms.
Just look at which chair you are now sitting on. Tested endlessly. Just like we do online now. Design keeps moving. If Rietveld had lived today, he would probably have had a Flash website.
You can find a combination of physical design and online design on Rietveldlicht.nl. Lighting expert since 1955 and online store since 2006.