O'Reilly logo

The Design of Design: Essays from a Computer Scientist by Jr. - University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Frederick P. Brooks

Stay ahead with the world's most comprehensive technology and business learning platform.

With Safari, you learn the way you learn best. Get unlimited access to videos, live online training, learning paths, books, tutorials, and more.

Start Free Trial

No credit card required

11. Constraints Are Friends

Michelangelo’s David, carved from an “abandoned” block of marbleiStockphoto

image

Form is liberating.

ARTISTS’ APHORISM

I need four walls around me, to hold my life, and keep me from going astray.

JAMES TAYLOR, “BARTENDER’S BLUES”

A general-purpose product is harder to design well than a special-purpose one.

Constraints

Constraints may be burdens, but they also may be friends. Constraints shrink the designer’s search space. By so doing, they focus and speed design. Many of us disliked “Write an essay on whatever you want” assignments in junior high, and we were on to something real: removing all constraints makes the task ...

With Safari, you learn the way you learn best. Get unlimited access to videos, live online training, learning paths, books, interactive tutorials, and more.

Start Free Trial

No credit card required