We Don’t Need More Designers Who Can Code(medium.com)

over 8 years ago from Saneef Ansari, Consultant Designer & Developer

  • barry saundersbarry saunders, over 8 years ago

    The thing I find most infuriating about this argument is that the question 'should designers code' is predicated on the implicit assumption that the highest priority for a designer is to make life for developers easier.

    We've tried engineering-led design, it fucking sucked 20 years ago and it fucking sucks now.

    A designer's highest priority is to keep users happy, not developers. Sometimes design and development are in conflict, and that's ok - productive tension is what lifts software above run-of-the-mill solutions. Sometimes designers have to give a little to make something feasible, sometimes developers have to work outside of their comfort zone to make something users will like.

    I've worked alongside developers for a decade, and I've only had a developer say 'that's not possible' once. Then ten minutes later she'd come up with a working solution, and was overjoyed at having a challenge to solve. If i'd already made an engineering decision for her, the product would have been prematurely limited, and she'd have had a boring job to do.

    10 points
    • Samantha S, over 8 years ago

      Your post reminds me of the book "the inmates are running the asylum" that I just had the pleasure of reading this year. As a designer just starting out in Corporate America, I am truly grateful I wasn't designing in those brutal times where design was led by engineers and design was applied after a product was built and treated as a coating of paint.

      0 points