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What Makes a Design “Google’y”

by David Brooks | 29.04.2008
Taken from the Google Blog:

Late in 2007, our User Experience (UX) group—which does user interface design, visual design, user research, web development, and user interface writing—set out to articulate the principles that ought to guide Google designs worldwide. What are the fundamentals that all Google designers and researchers accept? Which approaches to design are particularly “Googley”? How can we encourage teams throughout Google to dream big and make smart design decisions?

A small team gathered to discuss these questions and define the Googley Design Principles:

1. Focus on people—their lives, their work, their dreams.
2. Every millisecond counts.
3. Simplicity is powerful.
4. Engage beginners and attract experts.
5. Dare to innovate.
6. Design for the world.
7. Plan for today’s and tomorrow’s business.
8. Delight the eye without distracting the mind.
9. Be worthy of people’s trust.
10. Add a human touch.

These UX principles flow naturally from the Ten things Google has found to be true and the UX group’s stated mission: to design products that satisfy and delight our users. We described the principles as “Our Aspirations” for two reasons:

  • We have a lot of work to do when it comes to implementation.
  • Every real-world product will have to strike a balance between all ten principles.

Still, we don’t want to waffle too much. These principles represent the User Experience group’s declaration of beliefs. With “Satisfy and Delight” stitched on our leotards, we’re determined to get up on the tightrope and start juggling principles. Please applaud or boo, as appropriate, so that we can make the next act even better.