So you may be asking: what does design have to do with creating a piece of software? When I tell customers that our team designs the Revit user experience, the most common response is "so you are a software engineer, right?" This is a common misconception about software; that it is created solely by software engineers. While this has been largely true for the past few decades, the way software is designed is changing in a big way. In many forward thinking companies like Autodesk, the concept of a holistic user experience - the way the user perceives and uses the product, including everything from the first experience with download site to the user interface to the accompanying documentation - is designed by user experience specialists. Additionally, usability practitioners evaluate the learnability, effectiveness, and efficiency of our product designs with users.
To sharpen the point, I often provide the following analogy to our customers, particularly architects: Think of Revit as a building. You sit in front of the computer and "inhabit" the application for hours at a stretch. To that end, it is critical that this experience be designed to ensure that you can accomplish your tasks in an efficient, accurate, and enjoyable manner. Similarly, when you ensure that your buildings truly fit your clients' needs and delights the inhabitants, you strive to achieve good design. We strive for the same exact thing. Unfortunately, I cannot take credit for this apt analogy. Almost twenty years ago, Mitchell Kapor made a similar comparison in A Software Design Manifesto, his appeal for the establishment of a professional discipline of software design:
So remember, as you work tirelessly to bring delight to your clients through your designs, we endeavor towards the same goal!