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Floor plan3

Design is a term used in new media as a way meanings are dominantly made. Through the use of specifically chosen modes designers work to create meanings within different media. The modes may consist of tactile, visual, verbal, or auditory.

Design may either be used as a noun or as a verb. As a noun it is a tangible object (like the floor plan to the right) or the predicted outcome of a plan. As a verb, design is to make a plan, prototype, sketch, etc as a guide for further production.

Design As a ProcessEdit

The design process encompasses the step-by-step and often complex path that a designer takes toward a design solution through research and exploration as preperation, and later re-evaluation, and revision of a design problem. This process starts with the client and ends with the finished design product.

  • The preparation includes choosing the modes and media that will best represent the discourse. Once the materials are chosen, the design is ready for production. The relationship between design and production is one of planning and executing. In theory, the plan should anticipate and compensate for potential problems in the execution process.
  • Design necessitates problem solving and creativity. In contrast, production involves a routine or pre-planned process. A sculpture is an example of this relationship. The artist must first make a design using the aforementioned problem solving and/or creativity. Once the design is complete, the artist begins production of the design.
  • This is not to say that production never involves problem solving or creativity, nor design always involves creativity. Designs are rarely perfect and are sometimes repetitive. The imperfection of a design may create a position within production with utilizing creativity or problem-solving skills to compensate for what was overlooked in the design process. Likewise, a design may be a simple repetition (copy) of a known preexisting solution, requiring minimal, if any creativity or problem-solving skills from the designer.


Design and DiscourseEdit

According to Gunther Kress and Theo Van Leeuwen, authors of ‘’Multimodal Discourse’’, a design is necessary for any given discourse to be realized. A design also “realizes the communication situation which changes socially constructed knowledge into social action."[1] The way in which discourses are created is based on the design and the materials, modes and media that are employed within the design.


Design in New MediaEdit

  1. Webpage design: The design of a web page is highly personal. A design can be made according to ones own preference, or a pre-made web template can be used.
  2. Graphic Design is a form of communication using text and/or images to present information.
  3. Computer Aided Design (CAD) is the use of a wide range of computer-based tools that assist engineers, architects and other design professionals in their design activities.


External LinksEdit

Notes Edit

  1. Kress and Van Leeuwen, "Multimodal Discourse." page 4-5. 2001.

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