Simplify this!

One of the exercises I’ve tried over the past few years with new recruits and workshop participants is to take something that seems a over-complicated and see how it could be simplified.

I usually use a DVD remote control because just about everyone has at least one, and because forty buttons seems like a lot when all you want to do is play and pause a movie. It’s an exercise that tells you a lot about the challenges of simplicity – and about your own creativity. Try it now.

Email me your designs and I’ll publish them on this site.

Here’s a list of the buttons on the remote control that came with my DVD player.

  • On/Off
  • Quick OSD (On-Screen Display menu)
  • FL Select (change the display on DVD player)
  • Open/Close (Eject DVD)
  • Advanced Disc Review (Review playlist)
  • AV Enhancer (Adjust audio and video)
  • Repeat (Repeat play)
  • Multi Re-Master (Improve audio quality)
  • Numeric Keypad
  • Depth Enhancer (Reduce picture ‘noise’)
  • Manual Skip (Skip 30 seconds forward)
  • Quick Replay (Skip back a few seconds)
  • Cancel
  • Skip Forward
  • Skip Back
  • Slow Forward
  • Slow Back
  • Stop
  • Pause
  • Play
  • Direct Navigator/Top Menu (Main menu)
  • Play List/Menu (Show a disk menu or play list)
  • Functions (Change on screen menu)
  • Return (Return to previous menu)
  • Up Arrow
  • Down Arrow
  • Left Arrow
  • Right Arrow
  • Enter
  • Subtitle
  • Audio (Change soundtracks)
  • Angle/Page (Change angle/advance still pictures)
  • Setup (Quick setup menu)
  • Play Mode (All/group/random play)
  • Play Speed (Changes play speed)
  • Zoom
  • Group (Selects groups of items to play)

Here’s a blank remote for you to use.