When is good design a bad idea?

When it's only a design

The difference between improvements and ideas

Every once in a while I mistakenly go to a site like this one and get all excited.

It looks like it solves a consistent annoyance in USB plugs, which are otherwise among my favorite things in the world (I'm a geek and I'm shallow; sue me.).

Unfortunately, it's a design/concept site, not an actual product site.

It's like if I went out on the longest cross-country ski track around and putting up a shack with a sign that says "Hot Cocoa, Warm Soup" and then leaving. Because hot cocoa and warm soup would be a great idea if you were all the way out there in the woods in the snow and were tired and would have liked to sit down.

But all I wanted to do was show you that I had a great idea.

There are more than that one idea here; some are good, some are cool, some are only pretty.

Some are cool and pretty, which somehow makes them not exist much harder than the ones that are only cool or pretty.

They're good designers, but they either need to make me smart enough to know at first glance it's just a demo or make the site smart enough to tell me.

Ideas are good; deeds are better. Pretty is often disappointing.

Kevin Fogarty writes about enterprise IT for ITworld. Follow him on Twitter @KevinFogarty.

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