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Modern Design vs Flat Design :: Arturo Toledo /AND/ Interaction '14 highlights

  • Feb 19, 2014 · 6:00 PM

In just a few short years, design for screens has gone from richly detailed to restrained, minimal and clean.

Arturo Toledo played a key part in spreading the word about Microsoft's new design language to the worldwide design and development communities

In this talk he will present the real source and inspiration behind what many call 'flat' design.

Arturo will take us beyond how things 'look' and into a deeper look at the use of a grid, typography, fierce reduction of elements, less and more as well as immersive depth on the X, Y and Z axis to design modern user interfaces.

Join us for an exploration of the Design Principles that gave shape to Modern Design in the 20th century. Masters like Vignelli, Rams, Müller Brockman and Barragán and experience putting these Principles in action to design user interfaces for phone, tablet, desktop or TV experiences today.  

We'll also share design samples and stories from the Modern Design workshop that Arturo will be holding on February 17 & 18.

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We'll also share highlights from Interaction '14 conference in Amsterdam. Stay tuned!

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  • Bente B.

    Didn't get what we came for.. Almost no content on the actual topic. When they got started on the actual topic in the end, it was over.

    March 4, 2014

  • Øystein Helle H.

    Thanks for the keynote. While we all appreciate Modern Design History 101, I was hoping for more content on the actual topic at hand. You mentioned how the Skeuo vs. Flat discussion was outdated (and I agree), yet spent most of the time addressing this very debate. I would've loved to hear more about the topics that were forecasted, namely: 'use of a grid, typography, fierce reduction of elements, less and more as well as immersive depth on the X, Y and Z axis to design modern user interfaces.'

    3 · February 20, 2014

    • Fredrik M.

      Yes, we could do a smaller recap that would get into the nitty gritty details. We have quite a bit on our plate at the moment, with Jack Schulze coming next Thursday and March + April full already, but we'll discuss this and find a date and suitable format.

      2 · February 20, 2014

    • Fredrik M.

      At the moment we're focused on the meeting we're arranging tomorrow and next Wednesday. Let's pick this up in week 11, ok?

      February 26, 2014

  • Solgunn Ø. M.

    Hopefully, next time there will be chairs.. (c;

    3 · February 22, 2014

    • Niklas M.

      Your wish is our command. Chairs have been ordered for the meetup on thursday, and all to follow :-)

      1 · February 25, 2014

    • A former member
      A former member


      February 26, 2014

  • Ka Yuk T.

    The historical backdrop were too long and unfocused, is enough to mention design as language and the flatten style is one as such. As the title of the Meetup was "Modern Design vs Flat Design", is odd to see the presenter complete disregard to the whole discussion, which was the reason for this meetup. Merely mentioning at the end that this is about "good design" yet fail to exemplifying nor highlighting how they see that in relates or translates to UX / Interaction design. I am not familiar with the body of work of the presenter and they didn’t manage to win me over with this presentation either I am afraid.

    2 · February 24, 2014

    • Fredrik M.

      Great input. We'll redouble our efforts in the future.

      February 24, 2014

    • Arturo T.

      Yes, we appreciate the feedback - the key takeaway for us after hearing feedback is folks would like something more practical and actionable. More methods and practices, less theory - You voice has been heard! :)

      1 · February 24, 2014

  • Solgunn Ø. M.

    Since there are so many critics here, I would like to say that although I mostly agree to the comments, the presenters were good communicators. I'm sure they'll nail it next time! (c:

    February 24, 2014

    • Fredrik M.

      Thanks for contributing!

      February 24, 2014

  • Arturo T.

    Thank you for the feedback! - Yes, we consciously presented this session as a kick off to what hopefully becomes a series of activities on exploration about Modern Design. Having met some of your local talent (Dave!) it's clear to me you are well suited to continue this conversation in further gatherings. While this session might have been take by a few as History 101, the reality is the world is still having the wrong discussion: "Flat" so as basic as it might sound, a discussion on history is probably the best starting point… I can see how a good follow up would include actual methods and practices. Please do so! :) For those who attended the session the big takeaway for most people was that "flat" design is the incorrect term to be using. "Flat" is just a trend and will die pretty soon. The real term we should be exploring is Modern design (as in the one explored by Masters like Rams, Van der Rohe, Vignelli, Kubrick). We'll be sure to follow up with methods/techniques soon :)

    7 · February 21, 2014

  • Christian M.

    Too much history of design, not enough follow-through on what Modern design is vs Flat design. Facile in its treatment of design history.

    2 · February 20, 2014

    • Fredrik M.

      Great input Christian. Thanks for coming yesterday. Hope you'll add an audience question at the next meetup :-)

      February 20, 2014

    • Lara W.

      agree with Christian, but I suppose that it would have been more challenging to entertain a discussion of modern vs flat with such a large crowd

      1 · February 20, 2014

  • Leif Eric F.

    Thanks for a great meetup :)

    1 · February 19, 2014

  • Odd-Wiking R.

    Never really got to the beef.

    2 · February 20, 2014

    • Fredrik M.

      Sorry to hear that! Thanks for your feedback and for contributing with questions yesterday.

      February 20, 2014

  • Mariana E.

    The presentation was entertaining, and it was good to remind ourselves about where does trends come from. But I was expecting to hear more and see examples about today and the future. E.g. Can we improve the affordance of flat design?

    5 · February 20, 2014

  • Marisa F.

    unfortunately I can't attend but this would be one of those discussions that I'd love to be in.

    February 13, 2014

    • Fredrik M.

      Hope to see you next time!

      February 14, 2014

  • Bjørn T.

    Really looking forward to hearing Arturo again.
    His one day event "Beyond Tiles" in Oslo may 2013 was great.

    1 · February 4, 2014

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