Standardization does not stifle creativity

Also: Designpreneur, Inclusive Design Principles, UX Job Tips, Banana UX, Video Games, Emotions and Smart Mirror.

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No, standardization doesn’t stifle creativity

When I interviewed for CVS, I chatted with the senior UX Designer about the design system they had in place. She mentioned designs are easy to create when pulling components from the design system. 

But more often than not, some designs require different interactions or new components While their design system added guardrails to design, it’s not intended to limit creativity and innovation. Freedom without structure is it’s own kind of prison.

That’s the exact discussion that is being addressed in this article. There is a misconception that there is a “right” way to design. But that’s far from the truth. Conventions help users learn patterns, but only so far as those standards still serve users in the best way possible. A technology, tastes, and psychology change, it’s important to keep in mind when to keep conventions and when to experiment and break things.


Live Show: Unlock Your Inner Design-preneur

This podcast episode will help you take your ideas to the next level by turning them into reality. 

One standout tip: identify the best teams to work with and find the biggest leverage points for solving people’s true needs.


Inclusive Design Principles

Here’s a set of 7 principles to help designers put people first in their work. 

One standout tip: offer choice. “There is often more than one way to complete a task. You cannot assume what someone is preferred way might be. By providing alternatives for layout and task completion, you offer people choices that suit them and their circumstances at the time.”


11 Actionable Tips to Get a UI/UX Design Job

If you’ve already exhausted our ultimate list of UX topics, here are 11 things that you do to prepare for your dream UI/UX role: 

  1. Adopt a design thinking mindset
  2. Build UX research skills
  3. Tackle user personas
  4. Learn to ideate with crazy 8’s
  5. Sketch it out
  6. Work on wireframing
  7. Practice prototyping
  8. Get hip to style guides
  9. Connect with a mentor
  10. Network with a community
  11. Showcase your work


UX of a banana

A post that was shared on the User Experience Design (UX) group on LinkedIn. This is a humorous take but does a great job of breaking down how UX principles can be applied to any experience.


“The more I deal with the work as something that is my own, as something that is personal, the more successful it is.”

Marian Bantjes, designer and author


How to Design Great UX (User Experience) in Video Games

Leo Laporte: “What do you tell your mother when she asks you what you do?” 

Nicole Lazzaro: “Well, essentially, I make games more fun.”

This video is a great reminder that everything fun can be more fun when the entire user experience is considered. Designers can use an emotional lens to understand why people enjoy – or don’t enjoy – interactive experiences.


How Emotions Are Made: The Secret Life of the Brain

This is a daring book that challenges some of the most revered and respected theorists and researchers— even how Darwin might have been wrong about how emotions have been sculpted by natural selection.

Lisa Feldman Barrett introduces the revolutionary theory that emotions are learned through our culture and our language. There is a lot of controversy around these claims but it certainly opens up a different perspective so go in with an open mind! 



This is a free set of vector icons that are made for designers and developers. They’re minimalist, clean, and versatile— you can download/use them as PNG, SVG, or HTML


Prototyping Smart Mirror – UX Case Study

Designer: Rahul Jain

Case Study: Smart Mirror

Smart Mirror is a conceptualized and prototyped IOT based interactive smart mirror that fits into modern smart homes to assist with your daily needs. 

Why this case study is awesome:

  • Clear problem statement: “How can we make an ordinary object into a personalized interactive device which displays electronic information in a real-world environment in a subtle, non-distracting, and fun way, all in one place?”
  • Versioning: sketched, version 1.0, critiques, and implementation – as a reader you were able to follow along the whole process.

Rahul Jain is a Product Designer based in LA who currently works at Google. This is a very unique case study because the product is tested and built after being designed so you can see the magic mirror at the end of the Medium article. However, without the frills at the end what makes this case study shine is the amount of detail written in the process. The ideas are initially seen sketched out with pen and paper before being moved into mid and high-fidelity mockups. 


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