Human Engineers

I would like to revise the job titles of Software Engineers, Computer Engineers, Web Engineers, or Mobile Engineers into just one: Human Engineers. After all, that’s what they do — they engineer for humans.

The same might also go for Designers. They are no longer UX Designers. UI Designers. Visual Designers. They’re none of them but one: Human Designers.

Engineers for Human. Designers for Human. Or Humanity, whatever.

When I speak to engineers about my design, whether it’s about the specification, the flow, the concept or anything, sometimes they’ll get back to me with a wall: Sorry, I cannot do this if you don’t document it in details. Sorry, that’s beyond our job description. Sorry, that’s something I’ve never tried before. Sorry — what if things mismatch?

While designers do their best to collaborate and explain their design to the engineers, and sometimes also help with coding and implementation, we also expect these engineers to have a bit of humane side — please improvise thoughtfully. I am not saying they should just improvise everything and whenever. They should do it with empathy, care, and with a full sense of ownership to the product. They should learn about ergonomics, user experience and design.

Think beyond the specs. Think for the users.

If the design specifies that the margins are X and you find out that they don’t stack together too well with each others, then do what’s best: Try to adjust and recommend the correct margins.

If the design misses some specifications and you think you can’t continue work — think again. You’re grown adults trying to make sense of your work, right? Own this thing, this work that you do. Perfect it. Make it better. Have the best guess. Then you can talk with us designers.

While designers need to think about technical limitations, we need you, engineers, to think wide and sound about ergonomic possibilities… or simply about what makes sense.

After all, engineers are humans, not machines, right?