casual design – design is casual

interactive design for web, video games, and apps.

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authentically being real

There is a challenge today to perceive the difference between when it is appropriate to have something appear real or fake. I think this style guide will help a little when approaching the concept of real vs fake.

Overall – When someone invests themselves in something, and spends a long time working with real resources, that is real.

How can you tell?

If you can tell an object, or product, or event took a while to design well, and seems there is no way to be further designed to make life better for both those creating it and experiencing it, including the big picture, then it is real. If someone uses real materials, they most likely understand the importance of balance and harmony related to those resources. Experience design incorporates all of these factors.

On the contrary, If it appears temporary, or like someone did not want to care enough about their customers. If the idea was to quickly get attention, or bring something to market without thinking through how to communicate, and maintain a good reputation, and earn return customers, then this is fake. I once heard someone say, “Nobody cares”, well this is an attitude and leads toward a very artificial world indeed.

Now, I would like to present a complexity:

Someone may spend a considerable amount of time working, by hand, so to speak, laboriously rationalizing a trend, to form the concept that a culture sometimes appreciates a rather artificial aesthetic over a genuine one, or more accurately, will overlook a misperceived faker solution, in favor of a misperceived real one. When someone recognizes the previously less dominant solution to be equally powerful, then there is potential to differentiate, simply by innovating by way of developing the newly recognized potential. There are times, for example, in much of contemporary thought, that have brought us to the conclusion it is not natural to hold two terms, in this case, fake and real, as signifiers of perceived value.

Where I am going with all this, is that we need to recognize a trick. I find it rather repulsive these days, to forget pondering the questions of is it real, is it fake, am I confortable with the intentions of a production? It is very discouraging to my heart if someone skips ahead to, “It doesn’t matter, no one can tell the difference.” Another reckless approach, “Let’s just do like what they did, it seems like a good model to follow.”