So, what is the most important thing I have learned about using online communities and networks in innovative design ?
Using online communities and networks in order to generate, create, refine and build up ideas and concepts is a very useful and encouraging method to bring designs into existence. We have talked about tools like Crowdsourcing and Crowdfunding but also creative inspirations and platforms for collecting and exchanging ideas. What I face as a new and interesting fact, is that many creative and innovative people like artists and designers have difficulties to “disclose” their ideas, probably facing the fear of loosing connection to it. Through sharing and revealing, they take the risk of loosing impact on the concept or in worst case the adaption of the idea by someone else. An other factor is the “lost” of originality and self-initiative. Nevertheless, in my opinion, these factors should not be restricting or limiting the creative/creating process. But should be exploited in all kinds of levels. Regarding this, the most important insight I can extract is, that it is not necessary to “go the way alone” but instead be open minded for inspiration and help. Because in the end, it can bring enrichment and new perspectives to both sides.
Katinka’s design principles for online communities and networks :
+ Good design should be direct and obvious
Design in online networks should encourage and comfort the user, relying on a clear and obvious structure.
+ Good design should be user friendly
It is important to emphasize the user by demonstrating and underlining the handiness and usefulness of the platform.
+ Good design should be pleasant and esthetic
An esthetic and pleasant appearance brings visual and mental harmony,complementing its usefulness.
+ Good design should be inviting
It is crucial that the user feels connected to both the structure and appearance of the networks design, so he feels invited and addressed to its content.
+ Good design should be adjustable and customized
A good design should offer a customized use of the platform, adjusting it to the individual user and offering a distinctive and unique design.
So, we reached the end of our ProjectCommunity course. Looking back, it was 8 weeks full of confusion, conclusion, questions, answers, serenity and above all, full of emotions. Im pretty sure, that every single person of our class experienced these weeks in a different way. Not only regarding us as individuals and the way of development with all its obstacles, but also our experience to work in a group. Naturally, and as I had expected it, every group had their difficulties and issues, and though it was a tough task to manage that, I think and hope we all learned from our experiences with the people around us, so we can use and apply it in the coming years. What I experienced is, that most of the times, especially the difficult and unpleasant situations are the ones that you can learn the most of, if you handle them consciously and reflect yourself and the people around you. And I think that we all can be a little bit proud of ourselves. Though we dont know our NGOs mind yet, I think we did a good job and everybody checked that he has a responsibility for the group which motivate to contribute our own work. In the end, we laughed,cried and struggled together and that made us grow together.
Regarding my advice for the next years students, two things come into my mind :
+ ” grift your teeth and go for it “
+ ” all roads lead to Rome “
The former, because I had to frequently tell this to myself, and I think I was not the only one. Especially looking back to the big CONFUSIAM at the beginning I guess it was kind of a helpful motto to have.
The second, because I think that everybody in this course searched and found his own way through it, and made different experiences and got different impressions. And finally, we all reached our goal, going contrary ways in different directions !
Finally, I can not give any advice on how to get the best out of this course, besides of trying to be attentive and conscious and not to give up, even if you feel like it sometimes.
Now to answer the last question, I have to admit that I can not really answer it yet. In my opinion it will be answered by itself, through experiencing the next steps on our path. But I did learned a lot, and Im sure I will use my knew knowledge and skills in the future.
Thats it for now.
Thanks for reading :)