A Summary on the Article
The article entitled Omit the Unimportant discusses design in general and how it should be executed. There have been numerous technological innovations at this time and people patronize them because these things make their lives easier and more comfortable.
However, many companies forget this important fact and turn their efforts to a product’s design. They spend too much time on unnecessary details just to sell a product that they do not realize that the product has lost its functionality because of these details.
“One of the most significant design principles is to omit the unimportant in order to emphasize the important” (Rams, 1989). Designers need to remember that simplicity can speak so much more than a complicated design.
They need to go back to the basics and ask themselves what their customers want to see in them: functionality or design? While design is an important factor of a product, there is no doubt that their functionality should still be their main strength in terms of their ability to sell to the consumers.
“Complicated, unnecessary forms are nothing more than designers’ escapades that function as self-expression instead of expressing the product’s functions” (Rams, 1989).
It is also important for designers to remember that consumers are very influenced by a product’s design. While this is beneficial for designers, it is not what consumers really need and they do not realize this soon enough.
The author indicates two essential points that should be taken into consideration when designing. The first is that “items should be designed in such a way that their function and attributes are directly understood” (Rams, 1989). Designers should be creative and innovative when it comes to their designs.
However, their designs should not be misleading and confusing. They should remember that people appreciate it more when they can use something without too much effort. It all goes back to the basics: people patronize these innovations due to the way they make lives easier. Complicated designs and products loses this basic point.
The second point that the author tries to make is that “the fewer the opportunities used to create informative designs, the more design serves to evoke emotional responses” (Rams, 1989).This means that people are influenced to buy a product just because of what it looks like. It also means that the more designers focus on the product’s design, the more that the product’s functionality is compromised. Products nowadays are made so as to attract people to be able to sell more.
What the author suggests is for designers to go back to the idea of simplicity. Competition cannot be helped and it will always be present in all fields.
However, this is not the only factor that makes a product “sellable” to consumers. No matter how great the design is if it proves to be confusing or not practical because the functionality is lost, the product will not sell in the market. “Design is the effort to make products in such a way that they are useful to people” (Rams, 1989).
Having said all these, it is still important to note that the author does not have anything against a great design. What he wants to say is that a product can have both without compromising the other.
A product does not have to have a complicated design to be able to sell. In short, designers should omit those that are unnecessary so that they could focus more on the product’s uses.
Many people, especially those who belong in the older age groups, do not really mind how a product looks like as long as it does what it is supposed to do.