Category Archives: M3 Design Journal

Designing Backwards Isn’t Backwards Design

What if I put a big pile of components in front of you,
and your task was to design a product using only
those items? Could you do it? Probably. And there’s
no telling what might come out of it…

Automagic: Implications of the Automation Lifestyle

Gadgets with connected technologies that can predict human behavior and adapt to our preferences automatically aren’t going away anytime soon. Just think about that for a minute. What does this mean to your life today? And what will it mean to your life tomorrow, when all of these technologies finally go mainstream?

Big Bang for Your Product Development Buck

I’ve worked in product development (PD) for many years, and a lot has changed in that time. But one challenge has remained constant: cost. More often than not, this is one of the greatest difficulties teams face

SXSW in our Backyard

Our hometown is the kind of place that everyone seems to love. But for us innovation and technology junkies, Austin is particularly wonderful. Full of youth, brains, local love, and breakthrough ideas, it’s the kind of place that seems to buzz with constant energy and excitement.

Especially this time of year.

Lies, Damn Lies and the Product Development Process

Project plans are an important part of any product development process. Without a plan, it is next to impossible to coordinate the resources necessary to create a successful product. But why are some plans great and others disasters? How do you go about creating a project strategy that your team can execute successfully? Here are 7 tips you can use to create a great project plan…

7 Keys to Successful Product Development, Part II

This is the 2nd in a 3-part series that looks at the keys to successful product-development (PD) programs. In the first post, 7 Tips for Selecting the Right Product Development Firm, I outlined the key considerations in choosing a product-development resource for an important project. In this post, we’ll discuss some factors that set apart good programs with excellent results from those that aren’t so good.

Functional Decomposition

Have you ever seen a product so complex—yet so elegant in execution—that you think its designer had divine inspiration? That in his genius mind, the design popped forth fully formed, with countless elements depending on one another to perform a myriad of functions? For me, this genius product is the writer automaton, designed and built by Pierre Jaquet-Droz in the late 1700s. It is a marvel of cams and movement, combined with meticulous craftsmanship

Bridging the Interaction Divide \ Part 3

In this article, I’ll discuss the widely debated topic of multitasking interfaces in the transportation environment. And I’ll look specifically at the user-experience tradeoffs that we make as consumers by adopting software-based controls

Bridging the Interaction Divide \ Part 2

In part 2 of a 3 part series, M3 examines the impact of high interface complexity combined with poor interface technology choices on the user experience…

Bridging the Interaction Divide

This article is the first in a series of three that will dissect some of the tragic mistakes we see in today’s industrial design and highlight some best practices for creating product experiences that move us forward.