Excellence, cross-curricular knowledge and recognized public speaking skills brought together professionals from various fields, students and curious at another IST Distinguished Lecture. Don Norman, a Design Thinker, cognitive scientist, founder and director of the Design Lab at the University of California, came to Técnico to talk about a new “age” of design, in which the users’ needs should inspire new design solutions.
Autonomous cars and medicine were some of the topics approached during the lecture. However, the speaker focused on DesignX, a new approach to design that addresses many of the complex and serious problems facing the world today, involving the human perspective in all steps of the design process.
Design solution and technology are increasingly related, namely in the fields of health, education and environment. Without prejudicing aesthetic concepts, “we must think that objects should be designed to be useful, rather than attractive”, points out professor Norman.
According to the Design Thinker the road to success will be the result of harnessing technology skills and human creativity. “Men and machines working together as a team and doing their best”, said the speaker. As a result of this collaboration “calculators should perform long and repetitive calculations while the human being should use his creativity to formulate the problem”.
Bringing together people with different skills into multidisciplinary teams, according to the specificity of the problem, was another topic highlighted by the speaker, who also raised a question: “what if we all became designers?”. Norman’s speech didn’t leave anyone indifferent and, as one person from the audience said “I take my hat off to him for such an excellent speech”.