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100 Product Design Books

Recommended list of 100 essential books for Product Design:

Methodolgy, Issues, History, Firms, Designers, Media, Materials

Product Design
. Automobile Design 
. Toy Design
. Ergonomics 



How? Design Process:

Design Methods
by John Christopher Jones
'seminal work on design methodology - to find a method that suits a particular design situation'

Product Design: Fundamentals and Methods
by Roozenburg and Eekels
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons Inc; New Ed edition, 1995
'presents the foundations of the design process'

Product Design and Development
by Karl T. Ulrich and Steven D. Eppinger
McGraw-Hill 1995, 2000, 2004
' shows how to bring together the marketing, design, and manufacturing functions'

By Design -
Why There Are No Locks on the Bathroom Doors in the Hotel Louis XIV and Other Object Lessons
by Ralph Kaplan
Publisher: Fairchild; 2nd edition, 2005

Product Design:
A Practical Guide to Systematic Methods of New Product Development
by Mike Baxter

Access by Design

by George A. Covington & Bruce Hannah, IDSA

Design Secrets: Products:
50 Real-Life Projects Uncovered
- Industrial Designers Society of America
Edited by Kristina Goodrich
Publisher: Rockport Publishers June 2001
'50 interesting design projects are illustrated in detail from concept to completion.'

Design Secrets:
Products 2: 50 Real-Life Projects Uncovered
- Industrial Designers Society of America
by Lynn Haller, Cheryl Dangel Cullen
Publisher: Rockport Publishers (October 1, 2004)
'Fifty design projects are shown in detail from concept to completion - that uncovers the whole design process'

The Art of Innovation
- Lessons in Creativity from IDEO, America's Leading Design Firm
by Tom Kelley

'Great stories behing IDEO's innovative approch to problem solving'

Creating Breakthrough Products:
Innovation from Product Planning to Program Approval
by Jonathan Cagan, Craig M. Vogel
Publisher: Financial Times Prentice Hall; 1st edition (January 15, 2002)

'identify the key factors associated with successful products - a revolutionary approach to building tomorrow's great products.

Creating Breakthrough Ideas: The Collaboration of Anthropologists and
Designers in the Product Development Industry
by Susan Squires (Editor), Bryan Byrne (Editor)
Publisher: Bergin & Garvey, 2002

'Brings out the importance of ethnographic research for product design'

Design for Success: A Human-Centered Approach to Designing Successful Products and Systems
by William B. Rouse

Publisher: Wiley-Interscience; 1 edition (January 8, 1991)
'guide to the successful design of products and systems that are market driven and user-oriented'

Product Design - Practical Methods for the Systematic Development of New Products
by Mike Baxter
Publisher: Chapman & Hall (November 1, 1995)

Competing by Design: Creating Value and Market Advantage in New Product Development
by Craig Erhorn, John Stark
Publisher: Wiley; New Ed edition, 1995
'shows how to take out inefficiencies out of designing, developing, and producing critical new products'

The Right Fit: The Power of Ergonomics As a Competitive Strategy

by Clifford M. Gross
Publisher: Productivity Press Inc, 1996
'A non-technical introduction to incorporating the human factor into the design of products and workplaces.'

Dictionary of 20Th-Century Design

by John F. Pile

The Design Encyclopedia

by Mel Byers
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons (July 1, 1994)
'covers elements of design in eastern and western Europe, Australia, North and South America and Japan.'


Product Design
. Automobile Design 
. Toy Design
. Ergonomics 



Why? Thoughts and Issues:

Elements of Design
by Gail Greet Hannah
Publisher: Princeton Architectural Press, 2002
'a study of the abstract visual relationships essential for the learning of industrial design - has exercises and student solutions''

The Idea of Design
Edited by Victor Margolin and Richard Buchanan, IDSA
Publisher: The MIT Press, 1996
essays addressing the nature and practice of contemporary product and graphic design from journal 'Design Issues''

Discovering Design : Explorations in Design Studies
by Richard Buchanan, Victor Margolin

Publisher: University Of Chicago Press, 1995
'essays on design as a subject of social, cultural, and philosophic investigation'

What is a Designer:
Things, Places, Messages
by Norman Potter
Publisher: Princeton Architectural Pr, 2002
'looks at the possibilities and limits of design'

Universal Principles of Design

by William Lidwell, Kritina Holden, Jill Butler
Publisher: Rockport Publishers, 2003
'many design concepts, methods and practices brought together from a variety of disciplines - a great reference book for designers'

(Crash Course Series)
by Thomas Hauffe
Publisher: Barron's Educational Series, 1996
'a quick guide to understanding the process of design'

Creating Value by Design: Thoughts and Facts
by Stefano Marzano
Publisher: Antique Collectors' Club, 1999
'essays on design process and methodology with examples of its applications'

Language of Vision
By Gyorgy Kepes
Publisher: Dover Publications, 1995

'analysis of the effect of visual language on the structure of human consciousness, the elements of line and form are perceived, etc.'

The Meaning of Things
by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi
Publisher: Cambridge University Press, 1981
'study of the significance of material possessions and products in contemporary urban life'

The Meanings of Modern Design:
Towards the Twenty-First Century
by Peter Dormer
Publisher: Thames & Hudson, 1990
'thoughts about seeing and looking at our produced objects and environment'

The Design of Everyday Things

by Donald A. Norman

Publisher: Basic Books; 1st Basic edition (September, 2002)
'on user-friendly design - raise your expectations about how things should be designed'

In the Bubble: Designing in a Complex World
by John Thackara
Publisher: The MIT Press, 2005
'about a world based less on stuff and more on people - describes services designed to help people carry out daily activities in new ways'

The World As Design :
Writings on Design
By Otl Aicher, Wolfgang Jean Stock
'Publisher: Wiley-VCH; Reissue edition, 1994
'opinions, arguments and thoughts on design as related to existence in a humane fashion'

The Hidden Dimension
by Edward Twitchell Hall

Publisher: Anchor; Reissue edition, 1990
'An examination of various cultural concepts of space -intimate, personal, social and public domains"

The Poetics of Space
by Gaston Bachelard, Maria Jolas (Translator)

Publisher: Beacon Press; Reprint edition, 1994
'about space, our homes, how we live in them, and how dwellings and space affect us'

Design Form and Chaos
by Victor Papanek

Design for the Real World:
Human Ecology and Social Change
by Victor Papanek

Publisher: Academy Chicago Publishers; 2nd Rev edition, 1985
'a classic book on sensible, responsible design in this world, making efficient use of resources and energy'

The Hand: How Its Use Shapes the Brain, Language, and Human Culture

by Frank Wilson
Publisher: Vintage, 1999
'explains the significance of the hand in terms of its historical, spiritual and physical manifestations'

By Nature's Design
-an Exploratorium Book
by William Neill (Photographer), Pat Murphy, Exploratorium (Organization)
Publisher: Chronicle Books, 1993
'about order and pattern in nature with wonderful and informative visuals'

Geometry of Design:
Studies in Proportion and Composition
by Kimberly Elam
Publisher: Princeton Architectural Press, 2001
'exploring the visual relationships that have foundations in mathematics '

On Growth and Form

by Darcy Wentworth Thompson, John Tyler Bonner (Editor), D"Arcy Thompson
'about the 'theory of transformation' that one species evolves into another by large-scale transformations involving the body as a whole'

Power of Limits
by Gyorgy Doczi
Publisher: Shambhala; Reissue edition, 1981
'priciples of patterns and structures found in the both the natural and manmade world.

Sacred Geometry: Philosophy and Practice (Art and Imagination)
by Robert Lawlor
'Publisher: Thames & Hudson, 1989
'explores the meanings and symbolism of sacred geometry'

The Fourth Dimension: Sacred Geometry, Alchemy, and Mathematics
by Rudolf Steiner, David Booth (Introduction)
Publisher: Steiner Books, 2001
'essays on the significance and concept of the fourth dimension'

The Golden Ratio: The Story of PHI, the World's Most Astonishing Number by Mario Livio
Publisher: Broadway, 2003
'phi is seen through art and architecture, botany and biology, physics and mathematics'

Skin: Surface, Substance, and Design
by Ellen Lupton, Jennifer Tobias, Alicia Imperiale, Grace Jeffers, Randi Mates
Publisher: Princeton Architectural Press, 2002
'relationship between the inside and outside of objects, garments, and buildings, creating skins that both reveal and conceal, skins that have depth and complexity as well as their own behaviors and identities.'

The World Is Flat: A Brief History of the Twenty-first Century
by Thomas L. Friedman
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2004
'about the patterns behind the most complex global developments in the connected flat world of tomorrow'


Product Design
. Automobile Design 
. Toy Design
. Ergonomics 



When? Past, Present and Future :

History of Modern Design
by David Raizman
Publisher: Prentice Hall, 2004
'history of design from the eighteenth century to present day'

The ABC's of Bauhaus, The Bauhaus and Design Theory

by Ellen Lupton, J. Abbott Miller (Editor)
Publisher: Princeton Architectural Press, 2000
'The ABC's of Bauhaus traces the origins and impact of the Bauhaus in relation to design, graphic design, and typography'

Bauhaus (World of Art)
by Frank Whitford
Publisher: Thames & Hudson, 1984 '
the story of bauhaus, its philosophy, people and its contributions'

Bauhaus 1919-1933
by Magdalena Droste, Bauhaus Archiv
Publisher: Taschen, 2002
'its about the people, the works and the thoughts at bauhaus'

The Ulm School of Design: A View Behind the Foreground
by Rene Spitz
Publisher: Edition Axel Menges, 2002
'provides the history of the Ulm School of Design, considered as a very influential educational institution'

Ulm Design: The Morality of Objects
by Herbert Lindinger (Editor), David Britt (Translator)
Publisher: The MIT Press; 1st MIT Press ed edition, 1991
'about the school, curriculum, ideas and people by the professor of design at Ulm'

Industrial Design
by John. Heskett
Publisher: Thames & Hudson; Reprint edition (February 1, 1985)
'has an overview of history, process and methods'

American Design Ethic:
A History of Industrial Design
by Arthur J. Pulos
Publisher: The MIT Press; Reprint edition, 1986
'history of American products and the philosophy behind their design, use, and manufacture points to the process'

Objects of Design

by Paola Antonelli
Publisher: Museum of Modern Art, 2003
'features a wide variety of industrial and domestic artifacts by great designers of the modern period'

Japanese Design : A Survey Since 1950

by Kathryn B Hiesinger, et al
Publisher: Philadelphia Museum of Art, 1995

The Streamlined Decade

by Donald J. Bush
Publisher: George Braziller, 1975

Moving Beauty: A Century in Automobile Design
by Pierre Theberge (Editor), Luc Gagne (Editor), Musee Des Beaux-Arts De mont
Publisher: McClelland & Stewart, 1995

A Century of Design:
Design Pioneers of the 20th Century
by Penny Sparke
Publisher: Barron's Educational Series, 1998
'History of design through the works of designers and their works'

of the 20th Century
by Charlotte J. Fiell, Peter M. Fiell
Publisher: Taschen America Llc 2001

'covers the influence of design in the 20th century'

Landmarks of Twentieth-Century Design:
An Illustrated Handbook
by Kathryn B. Hiesinger, George Marcus
Publisher: Abbeville Press; 1st ed edition, 1993
'study of international design, decade by decade, with essays on the trends, innovations, and significant objects of each period'

Icons of Design:
The 20th Century (Prestel's Icons)
by Volker Albus (Editor), Reyer Kras (Editor), Jonathan M. Woodham (Editor) Publisher: Prestel Publishing, 2000
'tells the story of 80 ordinary items which gained iconic status during the course of the 20th century'

Industrial Design 19th To 21st

by Galeries Nationales Du Grand Palais (France), Jocelyn De Noblet (Editor), Jocelyn De Noblet (Editor)
Publisher: Flammarion, 1996
'a collection of essays on Industrial Design as Mirror of the Century'

Designing the 21st Century
by Charlotte J. Fiell, Peter M. Fiell
Publisher: Taschen, 2001
'book on the future of product, furniture, lighting, ceramic, glassware, and textile design'

Vision of the Future
by Stefano Marzano
Publisher: Uitgeverij V + K 1996
'future lifestyles, products and services in the domestic, public, personal and mobile domains'


Product Design
. Automobile Design 
. Toy Design
. Ergonomics 



by Whom? Design Firms:

Alessi: The Design Factory (Academy Editions)

by Allesandro Mendini, Nonie Niesewand
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons; Revised edition, 2001
'about the history of the company, its design ethos, its designers and products'

Appledesign: The Work of the Apple Industrial Design Group
by Paul Kunkel, Rick English (Photographer)
Publisher: Graphis Pr, 1997
'history and documentation of Apple's innovative design products'

Eames Design
by John Neuhart, Marilyn Neuhart
Publisher: Harry N Abrams, 1989
'about the history of the firm, about the Eames chair, with writings on its products and films'

Frog: Form Follows Emotion

by Fay Sweet
Publisher: Watson-Guptill Publications, 1998
'about some their innovative design ideas and products'

IDEO: Masters of Innovation
by Jeremy Myerson
Publisher: te Neues Publishing Company 2001

by Sibylle Kicherer, Sybille Kicherer-De Lucchi
Publisher: Rizzoli, 1990

Innovation: Award-Winning Industrial Design
By Industrial Designers Society of America
'a variety of award winning peofessional and student works'

The Digital Dreams : The Work of the Sony Design Center

by Paul Kunkel
Publisher: Universe, 1999
'look inside Sony's influential design center and their products'


Product Design
. Automobile Design 
. Toy Design
. Ergonomics 



by Who? Designers:

ABC of Design

by Lynn Gordon, D Joy

Publisher: Chronicle Books (May 1, 1996)
'provides introduction to some of the world's most important designers'

Buckyworks: Buckminster Fuller's Ideas for Today
By J. Baldwin
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons, 1996
'wonderfully nontechnical introduction to and celebration of the Buckminister Fuller, his remarkable inventions, and their modern-day relevance'

Work of Charles and Ray Eames
by Donald Albrecht
Publisher: Harry N Abrams, 1997
'The essays in this handsome and generously illustrated volume examine the Eameses' projects in the contexts of science, corporate patronage, and politics as well as those of modern design, architecture, and art.'

Ettore Sottsass: The Architecture and Design of Sottsass Associates
by Andrea Branzi, Herbert Mushcamp
Publisher: Universe Books 1999

'with a brief overview on the long and varied career of Ettore Sottsass, this book offers welcome documentation of the graphic, product, and architectural designs of Sottsass Associates.'

Karim Rashid: I Want to Change the World
by Karim Rashid
Publisher: Universe Books 2001
'comprehensive survey of Rashid's designs, his products and the philosophy behind them - by the prolific young designer practicing in America '

Marc Newson
by Conway Lloyd Morgan
Publisher: Universe Books, 2003
'features Newson's dynamic body of work, combining personal archive of sketches and plans and traces the development of Newson's distinctive visual language, inspired by such idiosyncratic influences as the architecture of Richard Neutra, Aston Martin sports cars and the films of Stanley Kubrick.'

Philippe Starck
by Philippe Starck
Publisher: Benedikt Taschen Verlag; Rev edition, 2000

Industrial Design

by Raymond Loewy
Publisher: Overlook Press; Reissue edition, 1989
'half-century of Loewy's career is offered in a stunning visual presentation of his most famous design achievements together with his personal account of a life in design - Coca-Cola bottle, the Studebaker, the U.S. Post Office logo, streamlined trains and ocean liners, the Shell and Exxon logos, and the Lucky Strike package.'

Richard Sapper (Design Briefs (San Francisco, Calif.).)
by Michael Webb, Marisa Bartolucci (Editor), Raul Cabra (Editor)
Publisher: Chronicle Books, 2002
'A review of the many objects that Sapper has designed during his career. They range from his famous Tizio lamp to a newly released Zoombike that can be folded and carried onto a bus as easily as an umbrella.'

Ron Arad
by Deyan Sudjic
Publisher: Gingko Press Inc. 2001
'features some of his most outstanding work including the Adidas sport cafes, the evolution of the Bookworm installed at the Cartier Foundation and the Tel Aviv Opera House.'

Stuart Pugh - Creating Innovative Products Using Total Design
By Stuart Pugh, Don Clausing (Editor), Ron Andrade (Editor)
'allows the reader to benefit from Pugh's practical experiences that made him a legacy in product design and development. Stuart Pugh, the pioneer of the Total Design movement, created the framework for a structured & methodical design process being adopted today.'


Product Design
. Automobile Design 
. Toy Design
. Ergonomics 



What? Objects:

Chairs A-Z
by Charlotte Fiell, Peter Fiell
Publisher: TASCHEN America Llc, 2001

Danish Chairs
by Noritsugu Oda
Publisher: Chronicle Books, 1999

The Desklamp: An Appreciation
by Kate McIntyre, Guy Ryecart
Publisher: Aurum Pr Ltd, 1999

50 Lights: Innovations in Design and Materials
by Mel Byars
Publisher: Whitney 1998

The Pencil: A History of Design and Circumstance
by Henry Petroski

The Radio: An Appreciation
by David Attwood, Guy Ryecart
Publisher: Laurel Glen, 1998

50 Sports Wares
by Mel Byars, Aaron Betsky
Publisher: Whitney Library of Design, 1998

The Watch: An Appreciation
by Paul Clarke, Guy Ryecart, Paul Clark
Publisher: Aurum Pr Ltd, 1999

On/Off: New Electronic Products
by Mel Byars
Publisher: Universe Books 2001

1000 Extra/Ordinary Objects
by Carlos Mustienes (Editor), Isabelle Baraton (Editor), Oliviero
Toscani (Creator)
Publisher: TASCHEN America Llc, 2000

The Evolution of Useful Things
by Henry Petroski


Product Design
. Automobile Design 
. Toy Design
. Ergonomics 



with What? Materials:

Best of Designs in Plastics
by Doug Cleminshaw, IDSA

American Plastic: A Cultural History

by Jeffrey L. Meikle
Publisher: Rutgers University Press, 1997
'history of plastics from a socio-cultural point of view'

Handbook of Plastic Materials and Technology

by Irvin I. Rubin

Handbook of Plastics, Elastomers, and Composites

by Charles A. Harper

Materials and Design:
The Art and Science of Material Selection in Product Design
by Michael Ashby, Kara Johnson
Publisher: Butterworth-Heinemann; 1st edition (December, 2002)
'includes cases studies, exercises, and material maps'

Handbook of Materials for Product Design
by Charles A. Harper

Approaches to Prototyping
by R. Budde

Design in India

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