3 Examples of Good Design

By | October 10, 2011

Xbox 360 Controller

Games console controllers bridge the gap between the player and the on-screen activity of the game. If designed properly the controller will not be a barrier to the gaming experience. I think the 360 controller does this better than any other console controller.

Xbox 360 Controller

Xbox 360 Controller

What makes this a good design?

  • Functionality: allows players of all ages to interact with the games console core functions and the controls in many different game genres (firmness, commodity)
  • Ergonomics: contours and size of the controller are well proportioned to feel natural in the hands making it ideal for extended periods of use without the player suffering from strain injuries (firmness, commodity, delight)
  • Durability: manufactured from durable ABS making it ideally suited to the rigours of a high intensity activity and the extended/intensive periods of use it needs to endure (firmness, commodity)
  • Aesthetics: pleasing to the eye; in-keeping with the console design and brand colours; brand logo is also present. Interestingly the brand functions as a button for the console’s home screen, similar in concept to the modern convention for site logos to act as home links (commodity, delight)

 

12-in-1 Ratchet Screwdriver

This is a really handy tool I use all the time, and it was only a fiver from the petrol station. Get yours from Amazon.com for the bargain price of £82.80.

12-in-1 Ratchet Screwdriver

12-in-1 Ratchet Screwdriver

What makes this a good design?

  • Functionality: can ratchet in both directions or remain fixed; handle contains 3 types of interchangeable tools, each in 4 sizes; light and pocket-sized so it can also be used in tight spaces (firmness, commodity, delight)
  • Ergonomics: handle is proportioned to fit in the middle of the palm so pressure can be applied efficiently, textured and indented to  improve grip; ratchet setting switch is in a deep groove so doesn’t change when in use; switch has a groove for your nail making it easy to change settings; tool cap is textured to make it easier to grip and twist to select tool (firmness, commodity, delight)
  • Durability: manufactured from sturdy and hard-wearing parts (firmness, commodity)
  • Aesthetics: looks clean and smart, branded with company logo; main body is black and yellow, but switch and tool cap are in contrasting red as a visual indication that they are movable; tools are identified with printed icons and sizes on the handle (commodity, delight)

 

Car Key & Fob

Used by a number of different car manufacturers for car ignition, remote locking and to deactivate the immobiliser.

Car Key & Fob

Car Key & Fob

What makes this a good design?

  • Functionality: protects key from damage; contains a transponder to deactivate the car’s immobiliser; enables central locking/unlocking with alarm activation/deactivation; unlocks the boot independently; acts as a fob for other keys when not in use (firmness, commodity, delight)
  • Ergonomics: small enough to fit in the palm so that the release button for the key is placed under the thumb; lock and unlock buttons are indented and at opposite ends so they are comfortable to use and are not easily confused; boot opening button is raised for further contrast to lock/unlock; divisions between the buttons are textured so no need to look at the fob to locate the correct buttons  (firmness, commodity)
  • Durability: sturdy and hard-wearing materials; key is spring-loaded but is not flimsy (firmness, delight)
  • Aesthetics: clear white printed icons contrast with black plastic; chrome polished areas of the key are attractive; fob has the manufacturer logo (commodity, delight)