Design Details logo

Have a question?

We’d love to help. Head over to our repo and create an issue, and we’ll reply back when we discuss it on the show. DM us if you’d like to ask a question anonymously.

Follow along

We’ll be tweeting new episodes, polls, questions, and show updates. Follow us and say hi!

Listener supported

This show is possible because of the generosity of our listeners. If you’ve found our podcast useful or entertaining, please consider supporting us directly by becoming a patron.

384: Finding Time for North Star Design

February 10, 2021

This week, we talk about the real struggle of finding the time to do North Star design. It’s complicated! In The Sidebar, we try to find the digital equivalent of a Norman Door.

Golden Ratio Supporter:

A huge shoutout to Copilot, the best app for budgeting and tracking your personal finances. It’s our favorite tool for categorizing our spending, having our net worth available at a glance, and getting monthly (and yearly!) digests of all your spending.

Get the app at

Latest VIP Patrons:

  • Ana Mak
  • Jackie Chui
  • Kyriakos Spiliotopoulos
  • Stacy Holmstedt
  • Chris
  • Aislinn Kelly
  • Eric Stahl
  • Nathan Lindahl
  • Tim von Bischopinck
  • Joshua McDonald

The Sidebar:

The Sidebar is an exclusive weekly segment for our Patreon supporters. You can subscribe starting at $1 per month for access to full episodes going forward! Sign up at

In this week's Sidebar, we try to decide what is the “Norman Door” of digital design.

  • nosam7 asks: What, if anything, would you consider the "norman door" of the digital space?
  • What are Norman doors? A Norman door is a poorly designed door that confuses or fails to give you an idea whether to push or pull. It was named after Don Norman, the author of The Design of Everyday Things which explored the phenomenon.
  • Don Norman wrote The Design of Everyday Things.

Follow up:

Main Topic:

John Cafazza asks: With a typical day being filled with heads down work, review sessions, and all the things necessary for shipping new features, how do you and your larger design team find the time and headspace to design for the future of your product? A proverbial North Star vision for the entire Product.

Cool Things:

  • Brian shared The Sinner, an anthology series that examines how and why ordinary people commit brutal crimes. Not a whodunnit, but a “why-“dunnit.
  • Marshall shared Ready Player Two, the follow up to Ready Player One by Ernest Cline. If you want some 80’s nostalgia candy, this is for you.

Design Details on the Web:


Design Details © 2015 - 2024

This site is open source