Friday, December 30, 2011

The Fragility of Ideas

by Drew Martin
In the Pacific episode of Stephen Fry in America, Fry visits Jonathan "Jony" Ive, Apple's design guru.
Fry engages Ive on a rooftop overlooking San Francisco Bay:
It could be said that the two most influential Britons in the past thirty years are Tim Berners-Lee, who invented the world wide web, and you, who have given us the iPod and all the train of Apple products. And yet you both choose to live and work in America. I wonder if that says something about Britain or more importantly about America.

With a modest stutter, Ive responds:
I think there is a conspicuous lack of cynicism and skepticism. Ideas are so fragile aren't they? It is so easy to miss an idea because they can be so quiet, or to snuff an idea out. I think that the sense of the inquisitiveness and willingness to try is so important for design; for developing those tentative, fragile ideas into a real product.