Most people make the mistake of thinking design is what it looks like. That’s not what we think design is. It’s not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.

…says Steve Jobs in an excellent article on the birth of the iPod. Now, for some this is just one more way of saying that form should follow function. But as an information designer I cannot stretch that point enough:

Interactive design is not a graphic discipline but product design. Information designers learn from things that we touch and use rather than things that we see. We live in a time where information design has more influence on graphic design than the other way round: Following a general trend in web design incited by undeniable usability studies, fonts in magazines and newspapers are getting bigger, printed texts are split up in to small chunks, posters become scannable, business cards say hello. The overflow of information calls for a modular, systematic order.