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There is a huge difference between being a designer and being an inventor which I felt is lost on most people so worthy of exploring in this Design Series blog post.
A designer and an inventor are both involved in the creation of new products or solutions, but they have distinct differences in their approaches and goals.
A designer is typically focused on creating the aesthetic and functional aspects of a product or solution. They may work on the appearance, usability, and user experience of a product, as well as its packaging, branding, and marketing. Designers often create visually appealing and user-friendly products that meet the needs and preferences of customers sometimes based on trends movements or aesthetics
Karim Rashid would strike me a perfect example of a Designer. His style and aesthetics permeate all the products that he touches but rarely if ever did he actually invent a new product / concept all together.
Most of Rashid's work is based on developing a highly stylized world and vision that could be seen as a form of "art meets design" but with the important distinction that the concepts and precepts that his art hangs on are already established products.
On the other hand, an inventor is typically focused on creating new technologies, concepts, or solutions that develop entirely new technologies, products, or processes.
Inventors often develop a new product / solution through vast experimentation to find the perfect synthesis of materials, form and function. Inventors don't have a preset path to follow but make up their path through thought, drawing, experimentation, testing and revision.
In short Designers often work to refine and improve existing products, while inventors are more focused on creating entirely new solutions to problems.
Inventors ignore the adage that "there is nothing new under the sun", they operate outside of an acknowledgement of and acceptance of the world as is.
When I look back at some of the more inventive products that I came up with the Mighty Wallet and the Link-less Magnetic Jewelry really stand out as concepts that were completely revolutionary for their time.
The numerous varieties of "Tyvek Wallets" that have come since my first publication of my design in 2005 have mostly played off small variations and adjustments of the concept.
It's been incredible to me that this initial concept of a folded Tyvek® wallet has stood the test of time. Proven by the fact that many other companies have created their own versions (designs).
As well as the magnetic inventions, these were heavily copied by companies to the point that I was accused of copying them (the irony) but these products have also shown to be long lasting parts of consumer awareness.
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Inventor & Founder, DYNOMIGHTY
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