The actual meaning that I want to convey is sort of like a good design covers up the nitty gritty technical aspects of a machine and provides a smooth experience when using it.

I want to describe this in a metaphorical manner with the imagination of a design as a "bridge" into the machine's world. I imagine that the surroundings of the journey into the machine's world is full of tangling wires and electronic boards in the background. There are moving tentacles at the sides of the bridge, making the journey a difficult one. It's like a Matrix world. A good design is a good bridge that would cover up all these ugly scenes/backdrop with a canvass of a blue skies and white clouds and make the journey on the bridge a pleasant and seamless one into the machine's world. The main gist is to describe the experience of walking from our normal realm into the machine's, comparing the raw experience with a "well designed" experience.

I am hoping that I could write this whole messy idea into a concise and expressive manner with as little sentences as possible. I wrote a a little bit of it but found it really really awful. It just doesn't even feel good when reading it, much less to lead the reader to visualise the scene.

The path into the machine's world is a curvy road with the tangling wires and tentacles in the surroundings. A good design flushes away these ugly scenes with backdrops of cloudy skies, making the journey into the new world a pleasurable one.

I was hesitant to even put up my attempt in writing this imagination because I feel it just reads so badly.

Any ideas of how I could paint this imagination out expressively in words?

  • 3
    Reminds me of the quote: "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." - Arthur C. Clarke, "Profiles of The Future", 1961 (Clarke's third law)
    – TLP
    Mar 6, 2012 at 16:14
  • Don't try be concise. It's a metaphor and it's your first draft. Keep revising your paragraph above, keep making it more lyrical and less vague, and you'll be closer to what you want. Eventually you will get the right image, but don't start small and grow grudgingly. Start big and whittle away unnecessary words. Mar 6, 2012 at 16:56

1 Answer 1


I don't know the overall context of what you're writing, but I'll take a stab at it nonetheless.

For the user, the path into the machine's world is a twisted road, filled with chip-shaped stumbling blocks and tangled wires grasping like tentacles to catch the unwary. Good design paves over these dangers. It gets the technology out of the user's way, by working in the way the user thinks. And because it does, the technology becomes invisible. "It just works", to quote Apple. It makes technology fun, by making what the user wants to do easy, and just as important, not intimidating.

It should be the goal of every designer to make the journey into their machine a pleasurable one; a path broad and clear, inviting to the most wary user, and wire-tentacled-monster free.

Ok, so I kind of added to it too. I also made certain assumptions about your target audience -- software designers?

  • Thanks, Patches. What you have written is beautiful and really adds life to the whole intended idea! The "story" flows really well and is nice to read too. And yes, your assumptions are correct. :)
    – xenon
    Mar 12, 2012 at 9:30

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