Apple, Google, Nintendo...what do most of their products have in common? Well, I would say that they are attractive and intuitive to use. Why? Because they have been designed with the consumer / user in mind. They have been designed to be as simple as possible to use, but not simpler. If they would be too simple they would be considered as naive (= not interesting).
Now it seems like the IT industry is finally starting to get the message of simplicity. In an article at DestinationCRM.com, Lauren McKay reports from the AIIM 08 conference and the keynote by AIIM President John Mancini that "The Future of ECM Is Simplicity":
"The iPod. Nintendo's Wii. Google. TiVo. What do these products share in common? Besides their obvious success, all are linked by a single buzzword -- simplicity...//... The implementation of simplicity is key, Mancini told the audience during his industry address at the annual AIIM summit. Yet there's nothing simple about simplicity when it comes to implementing enterprise content management (ECM), he said"
I get all warm inside when I read this. With simpler content management technologies, enterprises might begin to focus their efforts on actually managing content instead of trying to implement and manage content management systems.
Here are a few of my own posts on the subject of simplicity.
- Just think S.I.M.P.L.E.
- The Curse of Portal Software
- Enterprise Wikis and Permission Management
- Expensive Things Must Look Advanced
- What Users Say They Want Isn’t Always What They Need
- Why Folksonomies Work
"Simplicity means the achievement of maximum effect with minimum means."
(Dr Koichi Kawana, designer of Japanese gardens)
"Simplicity is a virtue."
(Ingvar Kamprad, founder of IKEA)
"Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler"
(Albert Einstein, a smart guy I know)