Life as a Prototype

Life as a Prototype


2 min read

Ever heard of "Life as a Prototype"? It's an idea I got from "Change by Design" by Tim Brown. This book is a must-read for anyone interested in design thinking, designer or not.

What's 'Prototype' All About?

What do we mean by "life as a prototype"? Think of a prototype in design. It's like a rough model you use to test out your ideas. Say you're creating a website - you might sketch it on paper and ask people to give it a try. Or if you're designing a mouse, you might carve one out of soap to get feedback. Prototyping helps us test our ideas and improve them based on real feedback.

The 3 Big Ideas

If we look at our lives as prototypes, there are three big things to keep in mind:

  1. Iteration: The idea here is to try something, get feedback, and then tweak it. The quicker we can do this, the better our results.

  2. Assumptions: In design, we start with an educated guess or a hypothesis, then test it out. Prototyping is all about seeing if your best guess works in real life.

  3. Being Okay with Failure: It's fine to mess up at first. Failure is part of the process of getting better.

Quick Learning Example: Life as a Prototype

Imagine you're learning something new, like skateboarding or guitar. Instead of the usual way of taking a course for a month, what if you learned the basics and recorded a song in just a week, 48 hours, or even 24 hours? And it's totally fine if it's not perfect at first. Get feedback, learn, and improve.

Wrapping Up: Fail Fast, Learn Faster

This whole "Life as a Prototype" thing is a reminder for me to accept failure and speed up learning. I hope you find this perspective as useful as I do!

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