Minimalism vs. simplicity
I constantly hear the term "minimalism" and "minimalism." In the design world there are different ways to describe the design, simple, clear and comfortable. However, most use the term - “minimalism”. If you are going to use this word, then at least take the trouble to understand the true meaning and use it correctly. The first thing to understand is that simplicity is not minimalism
. They are similar, but they are not the same.
What is minimalism?
Really minimalistic design - a design with a maximum signal / noise ratio
. A signal is the information you would like to communicate; noise is extraneous information that blurs a signal. The key to creating a minimalist design is to achieve maximum signal and minimum noise
. When you achieved this, you reduced the burden on the user and created a clear focus on your information. In a minimalist design, the removal of unnecessary elements emphasizes important information
, resulting in a stronger signal and reduced noise. The signal increases when you highlight the necessary information
, giving it even greater emphasis and contrast to less important information. Before talking about minimalism, you need to have the highest possible signal to noise ratio.
Signal / noise ratio (example)
Minimalism is not always needed
When do you need minimalism in design? It depends on how you define success for your design. If a good design is one that is very beautiful, then the first navigation bar below can be your choice. If you simultaneously want to achieve an attractive appearance and at the same time not strain users, the second and third navigation panels will be a good choice. But maybe you think: “minimalism is cool!”, Like simple things and solutions (for example, the font Helvetica Neue Light). If so, the lowest navigation bar will be the best choice. It all depends on you and how you determine the success of your design
. However, I would advise to make sure that your signal is at least higher than the noise. Then what you want to convey to users will be clear. Minimalism is good, but sometimes simplicity is enough.