No trivia or quizzes yet. Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Want to Read saving…. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Refresh and try again. Open Preview See a Problem? Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. The Laws of Simplicity: Design, Technology, Business, Life 3. Ten laws of simplicity for business, technology, and design that teach us how to need less but get more. Finally, we are learning that simplicity equals sanity.
We're rebelling against technology that's too complicated, DVD players with too many menus, and software accompanied by megabyte "read me" manuals. The iPod's clean gadgetry has made simplicity hip. But sometimes Ten laws of simplicity for business, technology, and design that teach us how to need less but get more. But sometimes we find ourselves caught up in the simplicity paradox: In The Laws of Simplicity , John Maeda offers ten laws for balancing simplicity and complexity in business, technology, and design -- guidelines for needing less and actually getting more.
Maeda -- a professor in MIT's Media Lab and a world-renowned graphic designer -- explores the question of how we can redefine the notion of "improved" so that it doesn't always mean something more, something added on. Maeda's first law of simplicity is "Reduce. And the features that we do have must be organized Law 2 in a sensible hierarchy so users aren't distracted by features and functions they don't need.
But simplicity is not less just for the sake of less. Skip ahead to Law 9: Accept the fact that some things can never be made simple. We can learn to simplify without sacrificing comfort and meaning, and we can achieve the balance described in Law This law, which Maeda calls "The One," tells us: Hardcover , pages. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about The Laws of Simplicity , please sign up.
Be the first to ask a question about The Laws of Simplicity. Lists with This Book. Sep 29, Erika RS added it. This short page book gives 10 laws and 3 key properties for designing simple systems. Maeda provides a hand summary of the laws and key principles: The simplest way to achieve simplicity is through thoughtful reduction.
Organization makes a system of many appear fewer. Savings in time feel like simplicity. Knowledge makes everything simpler. Simplicity and complexity need each other. What lies in the periphery of sim This short page book gives 10 laws and 3 key properties for designing simple systems.
What lies in the periphery of simplicity is definitely not peripheral. More emotions are better than less. In simplicity we trust. Some things can never be made simple. Simplicity is about subtracting the obvious, and adding the meaningful. More appears like less simply by moving it far, far away.
Use less, gain more. I fail to see the difference between the laws and principles maybe Maeda just didn't want 13 laws ; , but other than that, these feel like a good set of principles to keep in mind when designing. They capture many common design dilemmas. For example, systems are often designed for expert and novice users. The "Learn" principle can be used to frame this dilemma.
A novice user has no knowledge about your system; an expert user has that knowledge. The system should provide necessary knowledge to the user while not getting in the way of the expert. By reducing the knowledge needed law 1 , possibly by relying on knowledge the user already has law 4 this dual nature may be achievable. There may still be problems because some complexity is inherent in trying to cater to two user groups law 9.
The Laws of Simplicity rings true. It is also consistent with what I learned in HCI and my own experience. Once at the end would have been enough. I can forgive it that quirk since it was, in general quite spiffy and shiny, literally; the cover had pretty shiny bits.
Nov 10, Brynn rated it really liked it. Everything is important, but knowing where to start is the critical first step. They squint to see the forest from the "Simplicity is about the unexpected pleasure derived from what is likely to be insignificant and would otherwise go unnoticed.
They squint to see the forest from the trees- to find the right balance. Squint at the world. You will see more, by seeing less. Thus choosing when to care less versus when to care more lies at the heart of living an efficient but fulfilling daily life. More white space means that less information is presented. In turn, proportionately more attention shall be paid to that which is made less available. When there is less, we appreciate everything much more. Perhaps this is the fundamental distinction between pure art and pure design.
While great art makes you wonder, great design makes things clear. Jun 14, Ettore Pasquini rated it it was ok Shelves: If this book was supposed to make me a better designer, it failed. This wouldn't be a bad idea in itself, if only these reflections were a little more insightful.
What good is to explain how the TAB key works and how powerful it is in organizing data? Or forcing gratuitious acronyms upon your readers and pretending they'd remember them? The author discovers new ones in every page, and it gets annoying quickly. However, I liked the idea of "laws," or abstract guiding principles. I think it would have been better to be more schematic and simply discuss examples of each one. When Iwata does so he's pretty good, for example explaining the iPod UI evolution across the years.
What's wrong with keeping it View all 3 comments. Mar 31, Rob rated it liked it Shelves: The laws seemed pretty simple, so simple they seemed either self evident or not a large leap to extrapolate from experiences.
I didn't find anything groundbreaking, but it is good to have a list like this to think about when you hit a design issue. I listened on audio, and this had the issues of most books focusing on lists - it gives the listener too much to remember.
I'd say the paper book would be better, but this is short, and you can find the list of laws on the internet, including in a top review on Goodreads. Jan 21, Mat Ranson rated it it was ok.
I like Maeda, I have one of his old design books. This one started off well enough but quite soon I began to feel it wasn't really aimed at me.
Maeda has a great capacity for summarising and shrinking information into simple, digestible phrases, but I couldn't help thinking with The Laws Of Simplicity he was shaping aesthetics and technology into metaphors aimed at middle managers looking for the latest self-help book. Jul 30, Mahrous rated it it was ok. With fast progress in technology, I think we shouldn't read self-help books about technology that was written more than 2 years ago from the reading time. What lies in the periphery o With fast progress in technology, I think we shouldn't read self-help books about technology that was written more than 2 years ago from the reading time.
Neither all the laws were well-explained nor the examples were related and interesting. The writer promised What He Couldn't Deliver. Mar 06, Dave Sanders rated it liked it. This is a sort of "Zen and the art of Being Simple. Some good underlying principles for those who are designers or who need to communicate ideas, but quite lacking in practical application. Amusing book for a limited audience I think.More...