1. Buckminster Fuller, 2. Visual approaches to design


It blows my mind that people can write like this!  It is so full of giant concepts (as in the universe, science, existence) that you can’t just throw around.  You really have to know what you’re saying, and this is one of the reasons I find writing so intimidating!

This man must have been amazingly smart, sure of himself and unafraid to put himself under the scrutiny of any number of scientists, poets, religious leaders, critics of literature…critics in general.  I wonder whether his views caused major upsets?  I enjoyed this version of the Lord’s Prayer because it addresses existence, the cosmos, and what we experience in our lives.  It seems to  acknowledge and respect the idea of god through stating, in awe, questions without question marks.


I certainly hope that visual approaches the design are not outdated, since in some ways I’ve only just begun with design.  Wouldn’t a visual approach to design just act as a tool for Terry while in his design process, to be called upon when needed for conveying a particular idea to someone? I guess he wasn’t arguing that he wouldn’t use it at all, but what would he be doing in its place? Surely he can’t verbally explain his ideas of a multi-dimensional contemporary design problem that well!  I was confused just reading his first entry.

I see the visual approach as a human approach.  Maybe I’m a little ignorant as to what he suggests instead, and I’m wondering if Terry’s a robot. With this, I would argue that what Terry describes as ‘multi-dimensional, contemporary design problems’ need as much ‘human’ interaction as possible to explore perspectives and relationships.  If a visual approach aids in this process, then why not use as needed?


One response to “1. Buckminster Fuller, 2. Visual approaches to design

  1. Design, the Future and the Human Spirit
    John P.

    Margolin’s article presenting the possibilities and challenges of the future reminds me of a couple concerns that the design community has yet to really address. What are we going to do with our new found power? And we can successfully navigate our way from focusing on the artifact?

    As a discipline we seem to be past the place where we need to convince others of our value. From business people to politicians to consumers, people have a much more developed appreciation for design. That “designed” things don’t just merely cost more, but that they are truly better. And being able to wield the tools of visual communication and content is a skill that has finally allowed us a seat at the big kids table.

    The manifestos of the 60’s and 90’s have not made the impact that their well-positioned signatories had hoped. During the 2000s we were too busy making money to think about bigger picture ideas. Perhaps this time of recession/depression will force us past feeding the habit of consumption to crafting enlightenment. Once we get past the paradigm of making new stuff our field’s relevance and responsibility toward culture will finally come into harmony.

    Big ideas I know, but the way we deal with our present situation could set us up to make even a larger positive impact on the culture of our future.

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