The problem with this approach is that you can never be simple enough. And of course, the bigger problem: Once you dumb it down so every single person gets it, you bake out the magic and the mystery and the elegance. Simple example: it's not obvious how to use an iPhone, not obvious what to do when you walk into a church for the first time, not clear what to do when you visit Facebook for the first time either. At the symphony, should there be big applause signs so that people don't clap at the wrong time?
Great design is intuitive. Great design eliminates confusion. But
not for everyone, not all the time. The words and interactions you use often have a sophistication that will confuse some portion of your audience.
Why not consider making it easy for the confused to ask for help? And treat them with respect when they do. If you don't create a little confusion, it's unlikely you've built something remarkable.
Tuesday, August 05, 2008
Seth Godin on the dangers of worrying about confusing some of your audience: