The best startups today understand that great design is a team effort.
We need to deliver a seamless design and brand experience throughout all the things our customers see and touch.
And that’s no easy task when we silo our designers into teams like Marketing and Product Development.
At my company, Zendesk, we’ve adopted a long-table approach where the entire design team works at a single communal table.
Flat design is the most popular trend in UI design right now.
Superficially, flat design is simple:
- Don’t use gradients, shadows and textures
- Use simple shapes, bold colors and clear typography
I believe that a few prominent flat designs sacrifice usability and best practices such as consistency for the sake of aesthetics — and this is what I’ll primarily be talking about. But first, I’d like to discuss flat design in a historical context.
When we pay for software, it’s usually because it solves a critical problem we have. It satisfies a need. It provides a certain value we’re willing to pay for.
And if we can derive value from a product or a service at no upfront cost, then we are more likely to pay later on in order to continue deriving that value.
Internet entrepreneurs need a business model that supports this notion.
Android is flexible. Most reviews tout that as a key advantage of the operating system, particularly when it’s being compared with iOS.
To quote recent switcher Andy Ihknato:
Android has a consistent core philosophy that I find instinctively compelling: why wouldn’t a phone give its sole user a vote on how their device works?
In the last few years, web designers have gradually realized that cluttering our designs with non-essential elements isn’t a good idea.
Excessive design elements like meaningless stock photos, textured grunge backgrounds, convoluted navigation systems, social-sharing buttons, blog post widgets, and other types of page bloat steal attention away from the core goals of our web design.
So instead of adding more stuff and more options, many of us have chosen to reduce our designs to their most basic forms.
And though we are building websites that are visually simpler than their predecessors, the results have inversely been profound.