Meta Refresh 2013

The design and engineering of user interface on the web

Up next

Design by Philosophy

Prateek Rungta


To show how designers can evolve by basing their design decisions on the most basic forms of ideas — philosophies.


Consider this common scenario: You’re designing a product and you need some input from the user. The journey date for a travel booking website, perhaps. You might arrive at a solution by considering: common date entry techniques on the web (HTML date <input>, Javascript date pickers etc.), factors that have a strong correlation with the project’s context (e.g. range of valid dates for bookings) and any constrains imposed by the environment (e.g. device capabilities).

An alternate, bottom-up approach might be to reason out a solution on the basis of beliefs such as: every point of input slows the interface; can we avoid an explicit decision from the user? Be liberal while accepting inputs; are we too strict? Simple trumps complex; can we use a native <select> dropdown instead of a Javascript date picker?

With this talk, I hope to show how we can use such philosophies as a foundation for bottom-up decision making — a foundation that spans across projects and addresses design’s uncertainty head-on. And finally, to show how this foundation can evolve organically and encourage progress.

Speaker bio

I have been building web stuff for the last seven years and like most peers in this field, I am largely self–taught. I spend a lot of time pondering about design and the web, and more recently, about the connections (and peculiarities) between everything around us.

These days I design websites at (and help run) Miranj.