A design is basically a blueprint or detailed description of the structure or form of some object or machine, or even for the successful execution of some activity or procedure, or the consequence of such blueprint or detailed description in the form of some prototype, object or machine. In technical usage, the term “design” denotes the procedure of arriving at a definite blueprint or description, which is often the physical manifestation of some idea expressed in symbolic form. In colloquial use, the term design means a product, idea, style or custom that is well formed and has the necessary proportions and attributes. The word “design” is also used in the more academic fields, such as engineering and architecture, to denote the formalized form or shape of things. It is, therefore, used in a much broader sense than “classical design”.
Designing is basically a process of arranging all the known information about a specific problem in such a way that it can be solved. Designing is not only concerned with the arrangement of the data, but also their content (problem), and how these data are going to be interpreted in order to solve certain problems. Designing involves the use of many computer programming languages, including graphics, text, images, video, software and so on. Designing is used to express the idea or concept in a form that will be understood by the users and designed solutions for their problems.
Designing is an active process which calls for a number of underlying activities such as research, analysis, collecting and making the data, and so on. There are different types of designing such as process design, application design, structural design, graphic design and so on. Process design includes those areas where problem solving is involved, like in manufacturing and design. Application design deals with systems, like in business processes, and graphic design deals with style, presentation and visual aesthetics. Structural design is concerned with the skeleton of the building. Graphic design refers to the use of figures and images to communicate the idea.
These days, the designing process has developed so much that it is usually carried out by a team of designers working together in order to solve the problems arising out of the problem solving process. This type of team work is quite effective because there is a lot of communication and interaction between the various members. It is this interactive process which makes designing not just an art, but also an applied art, and one which is capable of delivering certain quality output.
Designing is often called the thinking tool of the twenty first century. A major contributing factor to the effectiveness of this thinking tool is the integration of problem-solving skills with rational thinking skills. Many factors play a crucial role in problem-solving and rational thinking. It is these factors which we have to take into account when we design something new. An important area of design thinking is the integration of human-centered design with rational and technical solutions.
An important factor in making people engaged in the design process is their awareness of its applicability to a wide variety of situations. There is a certain tension between designing and being practical, and between designing and being abstract. It is this tension which is responsible for making the designer as well as the user engaged in the activity. Finally, the designer must remember that he is involved in creating a product, and that the designing process is only one of the steps in the whole product development process.