18 de outubro de 2007

Information design, because it must reach everyone...

Clearly, there's a crying need for information design in our modern world, for data that is organized, written and presented so everyone can understand it. When the design of information is left to chance the result is information anxiety. And when things become too complex, when an environment defies common sense, when technical requirements are allowed to prevail over human considerations, then someone has to intervene. This is where the information designer comes in. It's his (or her) job to know that what's required here is more than just "good" design. What's the point of creating a swell-looking layout and printing it in attractive colors when all the wrong questions are being asked in all the wrong ways? The design of information may first involve translating a message from one language to another, or from official or technical jargon into plain English, or from complicated diagrams into straightforward listings. Information design, because it must reach everyone, is as much about process as anything else. This is more than likely to be news to your average graphic designer. Most designers are conditioned to regarding the design of information as something that is somehow beneath them; they'd rather be left alone to design posters, logos and glossy brochures, which probably pay better anyway. And besides, who wants to spend their time trying to figure out what information is needed and where it should be put?

Information Design by Erik Spiekermann, 2002

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