Design with Intent Toolkit Released

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One of the main tricks to good design is finding the right questions to ask at the right time. But how do you find those questions?

Thankfully, UK industrial designer, engineer, and reseacher Dan Lockton may be able to help.

Dan’s Design with Intent Toolkit provides you with eight different approaches or, as Dan calls them, "lenses" through which to view a design problem. Each lens is simply a series of questions that tackle a design challenge from one established school of thought.

The eight lenses are:

Architectural: Borrowing ideas from achitecture, urban planning, and traffic management
Errorproofing: Drawing on safety-focused theories often found in ergonomic, health,
and safety-related design
Interaction: Using some of the more familar Human-Computer interaction ideas established in UI design
Ludic: Using techniques for influencing user behavior derived from games and other "playful" interactions
Perceptual: Drawing on ideas on how the brain processes the world around it
Cognitive: Using ideas based on what we know about how users’ decision making
Machiavellian: Centering around a loose collection of useful but perhaps unethical techniques for manipulating user behavior
Security: Taking "deterrent and countermeasure" approaches to altering user behavior

In total there are 101 questions you can use to test and refine your design ideas from angles you’ve probably never considered in the past.

Designing With Intent ToolkitAlthough Dan is still refining the content, the cards are currently available for free download and printing on PDF. Apparently a printed edition will be available for purchase in the near future. In the meantime, they’re still looking for constructive feedback, so give them some love if you can.

When a design isn’t quite working, it’s often hard to find a different way to approach the problem. These cards offer a useful path forward.

Check them out. It should be time well spent.

From Design View #70
Alex WalkerAlex Walker
View Author

Alex has been doing cruel and unusual things to CSS since 2001. He is the lead front-end design and dev for SitePoint and one-time SitePoint's Design and UX editor with over 150+ newsletter written. Co-author of The Principles of Beautiful Web Design. Now Alex is involved in the planning, development, production, and marketing of a huge range of printed and online products and references. He has designed over 60+ of SitePoint's book covers.

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