Intellectual and Artistic Works

I stumbled upon a great statement while reading The Macintosh Way by Guy Kawaski.

“Macintosh software products are intellectual and artistic works. Like painting, sculpture, or music, they cannot be combined and remain either intellectual or artistic.”

This statement is exactly how I was thinking as I delivered my opinion during last year’s executive board review of Team A’s design development submission for the Drexel Smart House.
Although I do not generally group architecture with painting, sculpture, or art (believing it to be a higher evolution of all three forms) … I think in the future I will do so when referencing this statement in discussion of design and integrity.
Even better than this rather cut and dry statement is the situation that brought it about, that being the dilemma that developed between Apple and Ashton-Tate over the development of a database software for the Macintosh. When I read Guy’s narrative, I automatically find myself comparing it to the scene with the Drexel Smart House executive board as they were working through their decision. Put simply, certain members of the board perfectly fit the cast of Ashton-Tate’s Esber and Nussbaum.
Lastly, and a tad sadly, it should be pointed out that in architecture, unlike (or perhaps like) in software development, once a design is presented it is so very often mashed with other ideas … And if the designer is removed or replaced … Then the project will lose its spirit and no longer be intellectual or artistic (at least not as it once was).

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