AI and Design

Artificial intelligence has already entered every industry we can imagine, changing and making us adapt to new technologies and circumstances. In the arts and creative industries this transition is quite specific since the human creative processes can’t be directly replaced with AI, but rather enhanced and optimized. In previous articles we talked about AI creating music and art, basing it on previous human works and input. This time we will focus on the world of design, and how AI can impact various design processes.

Different areas of design

„AI innovations and processes can be applied in product design, website and e-commerce optimization, adjustment of sites and products to individual user preferences, designing user interfaces, fashion design, but also design in the sense of architecture or smart planning for cities and communities.
Fashion designers are already creating virtual masterpieces. Virtual fashion refers to creations made only virtually, not existing in the real world, and meant to be bought and worn in the digital world. This is how fashion brands are staying relevant to the modern consumer and striving to keep their presence. With virtual and augmented reality (VR and AR) they can also upgrade the buying process and help consumers “try on” different outfits in the store or from their home. But besides making the process more enjoyable for consumers, VR and AR can also help make real fashion more sustainable as well as improve the creative process. Designers can use AI to take patterns and different criteria into account and suggest thousands of variations which the designer can choose from and adjust to make the final product. AI can also be used to calculate material optimization when cutting the fabrics and can aid in budgeting but also waste management.

Product design is also crucial and it encompasses many different things. Design can help optimize products and services for individual users, make them more user-friendly and help the companies producing them. But another important fact is that design can be used for good, and change products to make them more personalized and adjusted, as well as more accessible to people with disabilities. Design assisted by AI can also help us modify machines and processes in various industries to become more sustainable and resource-efficient.
When mentioning sustainability, another crucial area to consider is design in the form of architecture or smart city planning. AI has a huge capacity to simulate and suggest better and more profitable scenarios for creating neighbourhoods or cities which are sustainable and self-sufficient, optimizing energy, water use and quality of life. This has a great potential to help us create a better and more environmentally-friendly future for our planet.“

How can AI and design best interact?

„What’s important for a good coexistence of humans and AI in any type of work is seeing which tasks can be done better or assisted by AI, and which need to remain reserved for humans. AI performs really well with structured tasks, both basic and complex, but those which require analysis, data gathering and input, pattern recognition and similar. In short, tasks that don’t require creative thinking, emotions or other soft skills and traits of humans. When it comes to emotions, AI might not be able to produce real human emotions, but it can record them with facial recognition systems as well as track eye-movement and use it for optimizing user interfaces. The things that AI can help us with, it does really well. And with AI doing all the data collection, pattern recognition, testing of many different variations of the product and all the tasks it is well suited for, humans are left with more time to be innovative, to explore ideas and go deeper into the creative process.

Besides helping designers with the creative stage and making the best product possible to put on the market, AI also enhances the important stage that comes later, which is user experience with the product. Being able to use advanced features like computer vision, voice interaction, virtual or augmented reality, having a product hyper-personalized to the individual – these are all benefits given to the consumer which make his interaction with the product more interesting and easy, as well as give the product a competitive advantage. „

Is AI going to replace design jobs?

AI isn’t really taking over any design jobs, since true innovation and design require creativity and novel ideas, but it can be used as a great help to optimize the design process, save time and make better use of available resources. The goal is to leave more time for humans to think, create, imagine and innovate, while AI helps with the data analytics and simulation of different scenarios and results.
It’s best to consider AI as a partner in the creative process, not something to be afraid of or which can replace us. Together we can accomplish much greater results, both in the terms of creativity and in terms of benefit gained from the product. We can envision products and solutions more suited for all people, more accessible and simple to use by all, more sustainable and leading to a higher quality of life for all of us. Human and AI collaboration can help us develop things which we couldn’t imagine or believe to be possible without the help of such advanced technologies, and this is something to be excited about.