Seems like everyone is against skeuomorphic design.
- Seth Godin said, “Skeumorphs = failure”
- John Gruber has reported on Apple’s skeuomorphic many times and called it “a fad”.
- The Verge has debated skeumorphism many times, and hosted a discussion titled, “Mountain Lion without skeuomorphism”.
Three arguments in favor of skeuomorphic design:
- If Steve Jobs thought that texture and depth were the right choice… maybe they were. Steve Jobs had better taste than most people in history.
- Texture and depth are more “real” than flat design (and certainly better than cluttered, chaotic design). It is no secret that Jony Ives (and Steve Jobs) admired Dieter Rams. And some people point out that Rams’ design language was “flat”. But Rams designed products with depth—real, 3-dimensional objects. Maybe, when designing 2-D interfaces, depth and texture are better.
- I’ll call this point, “This is Better Than That.” Pick the one that is better designed (you can click the image for a larger view):
Outlook Calendar vs iCal
(I have written about Outlook before.)
Maybe skeuomorphic design is good. Maybe “real” textures and faked depth are good. Maybe skeuomorphic is better than the alternative. Maybe “flat” design is so clean it loses the connection to the user that Apple strives for.