As a child, everyone created without boundaries ; free to let his imagination guide the creation. One might argue that children do Art and not Design. The difference between Art and Design is often characterised by the fact that Design serves a purpose : there need to be a functionality. Fair enough, but in some cases, it really is Design (build a house for a bug, create a wood cabin…). What makes the children so happy about realising their first design is the feeling of pride when they can show their realisation? It helps them realise that they can somehow add something to the world and give them the perception of being. Unfortunately, if they are not pushed to do more by their surroundings, they tend to be discouraged and lose little by little the power and envy to create and design. How to gain back the freedom we had as children and be the designer we once were ?
Our society had long been very restrictive for design freedom, not in the sense that some designs wouldn’t be accepted, but in the sense that it did not facilitate nor encourage creation. The generation Y experiences a different paradigm, where crowdsourcing and crowdfunding have a tremendous effect on the society. As a matter of fact , the boundaries of knowledge are quickly disappearing, and with it the general mindset evolved. A few years back, lots of people wouldn’t have thought about creating something because they didn’t have the knowledge on how to build it, nor knew where they would have been able to get the knowledge from. For instance, let’s take the design of a website, 15 years ago only webmaster could create them ; so people didn’t even think about them being able to create their own website. If your brain estimate that the gap of your knowledge to the needed knowledge is too big, you tend to not even try.
Nowadays, thanks to crowdsourcing (open source), the mindset changed dramatically. Indeed, not only you know you can find any information online, but you know that you will always get support if you seek for it. It makes a huge difference, because the support you might not have anymore from your friends and family, you can find it on the internet. Someone will support and help you to create again. Psychologically, you are free to create and try out, to feel the hapiness you experienced as a child. Peers encourage each other and work on the shared creation (the core of open source).
On the other hand, the phenomenon of crowdfunding enables future customers to be part of the design process. They are « voting » with their money and get excited about the development of the project following it from its very concept to a finished product. Anyone can now have an idea, present it and get funding from the crowd if he is convincing enough.
The boundaries of knowledge (crowdsourcing) and the one of funding (crowdfunding) not existing anymore, the fields of creation of new product is in real expansion. We are experiencing a connected world where the public mass can decide over authorities. It is not only a diploma that gives you the right to be designer. Anyone can be designer if the crowd decides so. Internet has created a fantastic paradigm for creation. At once, the lost confidence we had as children arises again !
Let’s create ! Let’s design ! Let’s build it !