Call yourself a designer

Call yourself a designer

Category : Design

Designer defined

Do you call yourself a designer?

Even some FileMaker developers who are known for their beautiful database designs take pains to say that they aren’t designers. There seems to be an idea in our community, and maybe in the general software community, that developers can’t be designers. I think that comes from the misunderstanding that all design is Visual Design or Graphic Design. Or maybe it comes from large software development teams where there’s an information architect and a coder and a developer and a sales person. In that type of setting, people may not switch hats often and they’re highly specialized. But smaller teams, even one person “teams,” is more common in the FileMaker community. So some of the more formalized approaches in use by teams might seem out of reach because of human resources, budget or schedule. Even if you don’t adopt a full scale approach, there are lots of lessons to be learned, tools we can adapt to FileMaker and to small team development.

Design is the first signal of human intention. If you woke up this morning with an intention, you’re a designer.
– William McDonald, architect

Design = Planning

Design = Making Choices

Design = Intention

If you have an intention towards your database—the way it works, how it serves your users, the way you assemble the hidden parts that no-one but you will ever see—then you’re a database designer.

Does it matter if you call yourself a designer?

Human beings work in categNameYourselfories. Once we file something away in a category, it solidifies the way we think about that thing. We rarely take that thing back out and reexamine it. Try re-categorizing your work as design. So thinking of yourself as a database designer, instead of a developer, can change the way you approach problems. It can make you more creative and help you move away from the old solutions you gravitate toward.

About Author


Susan Prosser is a FileMaker Pro developer and author. She's stopped trying to bring more information to the people and is helping them get more out of the information they already have.