Most important thing when creating any design is understanding it’s end user. First thing that every single designer should do before creating anything is to understand what users will expect from final product – then to focus on they needs and bring this together with main goal that the end product need to achieve.
Who needs a pen that can write endlessly if it will not fit your hand? Without the knowledge about how human hand works and operate – you cannot design a pen even if you have knowledge about how to create one that will never run out of ink.
You can build fastest and most secure car in the world – but if someone cannot fit inside – he’ll simply never use it and never drive it – just because it’s impossible to even get into that very car.
Same principles works in every single design field surely also in the UX/UI design. When i’m designing an application, website or anything i’m constantly trying to think who will be using it and how to create it as simple and convinient for him.
Of course there are limits of it cause there is no something like a perfect design. There is a saying in design world that says: KISS – Keep It Simple Stupid. If you try to deconstruct that to the bare minimum you’ll understand that perfect is only nothing. But nothing doesn’t have any functionality – it’s useless for the user. You can’t create one button for complex aplication and you cannot show user just one photo – cause there will be nothing he can achieve with it.
So in the end – you’re limited for simplyfying by a product functionalities – more complex aplication, website or anything – is harder to make it simple to work and it’s harder to keep user happy.
For example – if you want to order pizza you need to find pizza place phone number over internet, look trough menu, call them and ask for pizza. But currently it can be simpler with using app – you just taking you’re phone and with two – three taps – you already waiting for food. Process is much simpler and require less effort from you – so it’s more pleasant for you.
But what if you’ll be able to order same pizza with only one thought of it? If for example you’ll got installed implant inside you’re head that is connected to the implant inside head of pizza man and he will start preparing pizza for you as soon as you thought about it. This example is what i call this “nothigness” – cause there is really nothing – just a space in which your thought travels.
At first it may appear super convinient but let’s try to get deeper into it. What if your implant got malfunction and it will start to order pizzas for you every single hour? Or what if you’ll think about ordering pizza but few seconds later you’ll think “ah… no – i’ll eat chicken today”.
It’s still problem from a user perspective – cause making things that simple – doesn’t work for you in the end – simply because you have to remain full control over every single functionality of using product.
I’m currently in posession of Audi A3 from 1998 – car is great – is very reliable and i have no problems with it whatsoever. But there is one issue – all of those cars from that period of time got defect with the volume processor and every time i’m trying to change volume on my radio – it turns itself up to maximum volume. This is frustrating to the point that i stopped even using volume knob – cause simply i’m not in a control of it anyway.
As you can see from all of the above – in the design field – most important is always the end user but you need to keep in mind all the functionalities you wanna let him use.
And more complex is website, application or any product – harder is to make it simple and usable. More functionalities – less it will be user friendly.
I can again use car example here. My car from ’98 is reliable and doesn’t give me any issues (except the complex volume knob that uses some sophisticated processor in order to change the volume) – if instead of that they’ll use just a regular volume control – there’ll be no problem. And it’s same with today very advanced cars that are pumped with electronics – one thing broke and car is stop working at all.
In old days – if you car stopped working – you could just hit the engine with a hammer and it was running again (i’m talking here about Polish Fiat 126p – it was literally how you could fix it’s engine). Currently you require bunch of engineers in order to change single bulb.
I would like to sum-up whole this article by A. Einstein saying:
“Everything should be done as simple as possible, but not simpler”. This is most important principle in the design work and this is exactly focusing on the end user – human.