Friday, August 20, 2010

Bad Design Friday

Part of understanding good design is understanding bad design. Design is part of our everyday life, and it drives me nuts when things do not function as they should. My soul sings when things are designed with thought and work efficiently.

Today I consider the sign. To me, the purpose of a sign's design is to clarify when things are not blatantly clear. A well placed, well designed sign should efficiently communicate, instruct, and dispel confusion. A lack of signs in a common sense location is frustrating (ex: detour signs that do not efficiently guide you through the detour resulting in getting lost). On the
flip side, I find it incredibly annoying when there are so many signs trying to communicate an idea, it leads to confusion and delay (as Sir Topham Hat would say). To me, this suggests that the best possible or most efficient solution has not been found for the problem.

So, here's my example of a poorly designed sign. I found it in an airport on one of my recent travels. I actually found it pretty amusing (it was also 11:30 pm after a 6 hour day of flying so I was easily amused).

Operating in an airport must have something to do with the ambiguous closing time, but what's the point of posting your hours of operation, if you're not going to post your hours? Why even commit to an opening time at all? Why not just say: "Daily From: Open to Close"?

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