Chronicling the Doug Bowman departure

Perhaps the hottest story among IxD professional circles in the past week, since I got back from touring Hong Kong, was the sudden, unfortunate departure of talented web designer extraordinaire Doug Bowman from Google. Much has been written about it, and I have my own thoughts which I’ll share soon (given my own past experience with sudden departures and short tenures at a few choice companies :-), but I just wanted to itemize various links for all the good reading about this interesting story:

** Andrei Herasimchuk of Involution Studios first posted this on the IXDA mailing list last week, which ignited a rather lively thread of responses on the value of “data-driven design” and personal vision vs. organizational fit:

http://www.ixda.org/discuss.php?post=40237

(Note: it’s very long discussion, but the notable replies IMHO are by Larry Tesler (a Valley legend as well, formerly at Yahoo), Jenifer Tidwell (a current Google UX designer), and Dave Malouf (of SCAD))

** Another Google designer, Graham Jenkin, wrote a blog post entitled “Hello Google”, which I personally interpreted as rather salty reaction to Bowman’s departure (at least that’s my own take in my jetlagged, no sleep, 12 hour plane ride mental state ;-)

http://www.grahamjenkin.com/blog/

** Finally, another person commented on this whole affair,
focusing on the core conflict of “data vs imagination”, saying that
designers add that extra something which computers and engineers may
lack– visual, imaginative abilities to suggest a better alternative, even citing Einstein in that regard:

http://theocacao.com/document.page/600

** All of which relates to something I wrote about here on the
role of intuition in design, and why it’s sacred and necessary when designing (actually a response to an interview I had read in Innovation, the journal of IDSA):

http://www.ghostinthepixel.com/?p=189

All of this has been quite fascinating to read and observe from the sidelines… and of course, I’m eager to see what Doug Bowman does next and how people react to his next move! Good luck and congrats on deciding to pursue a path respecting your personal visions and convictions as a successful designer. Life is simply too short to do otherwise.

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