Watches Tell More Than Time: Product Design, Information and the Quest for Elegance

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9780071362436: Watches Tell More Than Time: Product Design, Information and the Quest for Elegance

In this volume, the author explains the inner working of product design - from a brief history of its highlights, to a discussion of the physiology of our responses, to products that can make the difference between like or dislike, to essential concepts that help us to understand the secrets of harmony and elegance, to the impact of CAD (computer aided design - 3D modelling) on modern design, to case studies of winning designs.

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"I hope people are starting to see design is making a difference." --Steve Jobs on the iMac "Fifteen years ago, companies competed on price. Today it's quality. Tomorrow it's design." --Robert Hayes, Harvard Business School"

From the Back Cover:

The design of every product conveys certain information, and modern consumers are experts in reading the language of product design. Most of us can discern the different messages conveyed by say, a Rolex versus a Swatch, a Porsche versus a Hummer, a Kenneth Cole versus a Bally, or an iMac versus a Compaq. But whether we're talking watches, cars, shoes, personal computers or any other mass-produced item, how many of us can say with any real conviction what differentiates a good design from a bad one, or exactly how the good design manages to tell its story so clearly and so well to so many people?


Design experts, psychologists, marketing theorists, and even French philosophers have wrestled with these questions for nearly a century. But few have provided more comprehensive or persuasive answers to these questions international industrial design authority Del Coates has in this fascinating and accessible book. Watches Tell More Than Time is a much needed resource for shaping corporate design strategies, evaluating product designs at any stage of development or marketing­­and optimizing them.


Drawing upon findings in an array of disciplines, including aesthetics, psychology, information theory, physiology, anthropology, as well as his own vast experience as an award-winning industrial designer, Coates peels back the layers of some of the greatest product designs, past and present, to reveal the secrets behind their success. From the neurophysiology of human perception and how it shapes our responses to design elements, to the secrets of achieving harmony and elegance, he attacks the subject from every conceivable angle in order to flush out the basic laws of good design. And perhaps more fully and eloquently than any author before him, he explains exactly why, while zeitgeists come and zeitgeists go, and today's Space Age sensation is tomorrow's white elephant, the principles of good design are forever.


Watches Tell More than Time is essential reading for managers, entrepreneurs, marketing and advertising professionals and virtually anyone in business who understands that, in today's volatile global marketplace, more than ever before, superior design is the key to success. At the same time, this book offers design professionals and "design junkies" a unique opportunity to learn the secrets of successful product design from an acknowledged master.

From Audis to iMacs, Beetles to palm-tops, the design secrets behind some of the biggest business success stories of all times

In this fascinating and informative book, award-winning designer and international design mentor, Del Coates, explains why design is so important to the success of a product. And, with the help of examples of many of the best product designs of all times, he takes design professionals and non-designers alike on a lively excursion into the world of product design to reveal the subtle interplay of psychological, physiological, and aesthetic forces informing both the design of man-made products and our responses to them.

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