writing by steve smith

Don’t Be Interesting

In my last post, I explained how a disciplined approach to designing creates better results. But how does one go about selecting the perfect combination of features to include in your designs?


It starts by collecting your thoughts. Talk with people on your team. Put all your ideas, big or small, in one place. Talk them over. Think about how they make you feel. Try and describe the feature in a few short adjectives. The shorter the better.

Reducing the List

Your designs should be so much more than interesting.

In my experience, there’s a number of keywords I listen for when talking about features, and I want to discuss one of them in particular that always raises a red flag: Interesting.

The word interesting is almost always a clear indication that particular thing your discussing isn’t important. If it was, why not describe it that way? Words like useful, time-saving, game-changing, powerful, and brilliant are seemingly so much better words to describe great features. But when someone resorts to interesting, all I hear is distraction.

Be More

Your designs should be so much more than interesting. Interest fades without true utility. Focus your designs on the adjectives from your list that make you the most excited. The features that match those adjectives are where you should start.

November 14, 2013