And other nuggets of weirdly specific wisdom
I have been waiting for this moment. Microsoft has let the designers responsible for the look and feel of Xbox One out of wherever they’re kept hidden to talk about how the new console was developed and what inspired them. Highlights include how the team applied the 16:9 ratio (and various fractions thereof) to the physical design of the console and Kinect sensor, how they used liquid black (aka “the blackest black,” according to the article) to enable the hardware to, “melt into the background when being used,” and the way integration of the design and engineering teams allowed for rapid iteration through dozens of prototype consoles and more than a hundred versions of Kinect.
These sorts of articles generally give me a little bit of a chuckle because of how earnest and dedicated the designers are toward things the vast majority of people will never give any thought to in a product.
But that’s also the point, is it not? Good design can evoke ideas through form, convey the function of a device and instill an emotion without the consumer necessarily being aware of it. And while the approach may sometimes seem a bit silly, you also can’t help but admire the pride they take in the work.