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response to why devs hate designers

Friday, October 30, 2009

My response to this post on a friend/colleague's blog got really long-winded, so I'm using it as an opportunity to actually create content on my own site! Yay!

Now go read that article first. I'll wait.

Yes. And I'd like to add that the designer/developer relationship shouldn't be without friction. Without friction, there is no change; there is no innovation. But with too much friction, there is no progress.

Developers these days, particularly UI developers, cannot be the code-monkeys of yesterday who were generally happy building mind-boggling algorithms only to have the results dumped as a stream of ultimately meaningful, but cryptic numbers and letters. These are the devs who need requirements so granular that they actually read like source code, and who more or less disengage when presented with a visual comp.

Today's developer works with UI frameworks that make strong considerations for design, usability, and accessibility. And through better understanding of these frameworks, many developers have grown to understand and empathize with user needs. (These are the ones you need to watch for and hire before someone else does!) These developers understand that requirements and visual comps can only go so far and that communication with designers is crucial.

Likewise, software UX and UI design as a discipline has matured greatly since the days of flinging visual comps at the wall and seeing what sticks. Successful designers and developers will have passionate conversations that consider requirements, user experience, technology, timeline, budget, and where to go for lunch. There will be frustration and compromise, but it should be in the best interest of the user; not the designer; not the developer.

Luckily, I work in an environment that encourages such relationships and pretty much frowns on using our "designer" and "developer" titles for anything but distinguishing our roles in the eyes of the client.

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i resolve to...

Thursday, January 01, 2009

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Wednesday, July 16, 2008

One of my fellow amphibious compadres nudged me to update my blog today. I hadn't realized three months had flown by since my last post! It feels like only yesterday that I lamented over the disheveled state of my home office (which I probably actually did at some point yesterday). Where does the time go?

Lord knows plenty has happened in these past three months, and I could easily turn this into another "about me" post (long and uninteresting), but I shall spare you and instead give you the nutshell version: went to Disney World for a week, worked the rest of the time.

So, there you have it. Short and uninteresting.

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status update

Sunday, September 23, 2007

I'm still alive — though you wouldn't know it to visit my site (brushes away cobwebs and breaks off a chunk of rotted wooden support beam). I've been extremely busy with home and work. My sister and niece came down from Des Moines for a wonderful week-and-a-half visit and returned home just yesterday. I managed to swing three days off during the visit despite being steeped in a relatively demanding project (particularly demanding for me as it's my first foray into WPF production work — thankfully, I've gotten lots of encouragement and some good old-fashioned hand-holding from the lead dev, whose name is also Lee.)

I also survived the densest part of the year when it comes to gift-buying (which I dread because I suck at it), second only to Christmas. Karen and Macy have birthdays not a week apart, followed by our wedding anniversary — our eleventh to be precise. A good friend of ours, Jen, was gracious enough to watch the kids so we could actually celebrate it this year. Last year, our ten year "aluminum" anniversary was celebrated with some quick "Happy Anniversaries" amidst trying to sell our home and move to Austin due to the new job. This year, we at least got to dress up and hit Ruth's Chris downtown for fabulous steaks then catch a movie: Balls of Fury (my choice... and I've already apologized... numerous times).

Thanks, Joe, for spurring me to post something. It was long overdue! Love your blog, btw. :)

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