design fragile product

How to guarantee mediocrity

Great line from Apple’s Jonathan Ive on the role (or not) of research in product development:

“we don’t do market research,” because “it will guarantee mediocrity and will only work out whether you are going to offend anyone.”

Testing, listening and optimising is great. Blanding out ideas so as not to upset anyone, or using research to cover your arse isn’t.

fragile Misc

Why clever people can be bad for good marketing

I loved the Olympic opening ceremony. For the first time, here was a major event that spoke to me and actually felt like the modern Britain I know and the London I am proud to live in.

This article celebrates what an extraordinary achievement it is for Danny Boyle to get his vision realised (and, to be fair, for it to be allowed to be realised). In these kinds of situations, it’s all too easy for a genuine vision to get blanded out by committee. As Bill Cosby said, “I don’t know what the key to success is, but the key to failure is trying to keep everybody happy”

I’ve written before about how easy it is to kill good ideas and this thought rang all too true to me:

Smart people can kill a terrific but vulnerable idea faster than anyone, because they have the analytical ability to create a firing line of objections to anything new and hence dangerous.