The Gary Hustwit 2009 film, Objectified, focuses on industrial design and the design of objects. Different modern designers from literally all around the world comment and are interviewed in their video on their opinions and answers to the questions of modern design—specifically, how does form and content interact in the designing process?
Design consultants that live all around the world, have the job of understanding people and basically what their needs are. The New York company, Smart Design, really focuses on the people they are designing for—and not just the average human, but also the extreme cases. They realize that if they include the extreme cases in their designs, the average people will fit right in as well. But what does this have to do with form and content? These designers realize that the two concepts are dependent on each other. Form is the materials used to create the object; it is the physical structure of the object. The concept is then the idea behind that object. These two come together when designers take a concept or an object, and give it its form and shape. Form and concept intersect simply when an object is created and designed.
When discussing Apple’s designs, the film mentions that design is actually a continuous process, and designers are really constantly designing, asking themselves why certain objects look like they do. Here again, form interacts with content, because an object’s form is continually changed to improve the object’s content. Look at the development of the iMac or the iPod. As designers look to improve how an object looks or with what materials new models are used, designers often improve the objects main purpose and content.