Re: On the Interaction with the design team


On Wed, Jun 1, 2011 at 5:31 AM, Dave Neary <dneary gnome org> wrote:
> Hi,
> Allan Day wrote:
>> Dave Neary wrote:
>>> Presumably you & others are still not interested in drawing a few
>>> developers and designers into a gnome-design mailing list, separate from
>>> the usability list
>> I think it's important that we work on being more accessible, and we
>> need to make it easier for people to stay informed about what we're up
>> to in GNOME design, but I don't think a mailing list is a good way for
>> us to do that, and I'm pretty sure the others who are involved in
>> design work feel the same way.
>> So yes, you presume correctly. I'm open to other suggestions though. ;)
> That's disappointing. Using IRC really is an anti-pattern which the
> design team should avoid - it's only one step removed from doing
> everything in person or on conference calls.

I think you need to be more clear about what your goals are.

Doing everything in person would be great for design work. This is one
reason why we've been meaning to ask the Foundation to support more
regular design team "hackfests". Using the occasional (video)
conference call has been discussed many times as well.

Design work requires conversation, closeness, and contact. You need to
build a relationship with the problem, the users, the stakeholders,
the developers, and ultimately with the product. These relationships
must be durable. But relationships are hard to do online. Hard to do
long distance - more difficult the farther you are from that
reassuring touch.

Is IRC perfect for this? Certainly not. I didn't use IRC at all until
just 4 years ago - and I still curse at it.  However, it is still much
closer to a conversation than is email. The architecture of email
encourages argument not agreement. Exchanges are volleys. Too much
tactics and too little strategy. It still has a place in the world,
obviously, but not in the tender stages of a design process.

We don't have the perfect solution but I think there is now sufficient
proof that GNOME design is flourishing despite it.  At some point, I'm
sure, this want will motivate an inventor and we'll be even better off
for it.


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