Everywhere you use the words “design,” “designer,” and “designing” in your software and your documentation, in the sense of graphic or artistic presentation, I strongly recommend that you replace it with the words “type,” “typist,” and “typing.”
Your abuse of “design” in that sense, in any variation, is an insufferable, unspeakable insult to designers.
Design is a visual art. In your documentation you go on and on droningly, semi-literately, snoringly about navigating file systems, sending designers off to read until eyes bleed through indecipherable, unexplained text files, and to hammer on keyboards, and you have the effrontery to call that “design.”
It’s little wonder that the web has become an infinite ocean of visual garbage. The once simple but aesthetic and invaluable art of constructing pleasing and harmonious combinations of shapes and colors has been perverted into a soulless, blind, mechanical drudgery of typing into page after page after page of esoteric and complex code, code that then calls other esoteric code in other pages of arcane jabberwocky, which secondary pages rely mysteriously and inexplicably on yet other sets of pages of code, code, code, code, typing, typing, typing, typing, ASCII, ASCII, ASCII, ASCII, the manipulation of which into anything remotely visual entails endless trial and error of uploading and refreshing and typing and uploading and refreshing and typing and uploading and refreshing and typingâall for the electrifying reward of discovering that one has managed to create sheer clunky crud with little, if any, resemblance to the intended effect.
What does it require now, in your graphic “design” model, to merely move and change the color and size of a simple rectangle, which we’ll call for the moment a “header”? How many hours would it take a designer to attempt to ferret out of thousands and thousands of lines of utterly undocumented cryptic code, in literally hundreds of mysteriously named text documents, the magic few lines of text that might accomplish this amazing feat of design?
Well, do you have any idea how many text documents contain the text string “header” in a Magento installation? Would you like to guess?
Don’t botherâI’ll tell you: it appears in 658 separate text documents. So which and how many of those would a designer need to sit typing into just to move a simple rectangle two inches? Who knows? Where is it explained? Where is it accurately and specifically documented? Nowhere.
Oh, of course a designer can go to your global search on the site and type in “header” and pull up hundreds more absolutely irrelevant references to the word, and spend even more hours wading through that measureless swamp to end up back where he started.
The simple act of changing just the position of a simple rectangleâsomething that would take a designer a fraction of a second in an actual visual design mediumâbecomes a labor of hours and hours of guesswork and endless infuriating frustration of trial and error. And typing. And typing. And searching. And typing. And typing.
So your misappropriation and abuse of the word “design” in a graphic sense is an ineffable insult to designers. You make it an obscenity.
It is a trap. It is bondage. It is slavery. It is a way to stop designers from designing and get them spending endless hours typing, typing, typing, and typing some more.
Magento is not the sole carrier of this pandemic plague by any means. It has infested and infected the world, like some alien parasite, to the point where even designers themselves go into a zombied state of acceptance of their fate, where they submit themselves ‘umbly in a macabre computerized manifestation of Stockholm Syndrome to their captors.
And the captors are the coders.
Of course you have every uncontested right to put out your massive collection of dizzying combinations of 50-odd ASCII characters any way you want. And you have every uncontested right to call sitting at a keyboard typing “design.” But it’s a lie. That’s all.
So my modest proposal is merely this: that for the sake of exhibiting a modicum of integrity and honesty, you simply stop lulling designers into the utterly false belief that with your software they will be practicing the art of design.
They will not.
What they will be practicing is their typing skills.