One of the powers visual designers have is the ability to comment on and draw from culture. If we're just using design principles to enforce basic hierarchy or style UI elements are we designers or producers?

Visual designers can use style to intelligently match, play off and comment on culture. The former takes place as part of user research, while the latter two often require skills of visual communication and semiotics in addition to personal experiences to be carried out effectively.

How do designers communicate through UI design? UI design is an intersection of an ever widening pool disciplines as designers find new forms of interaction across more connected mediums. Style or personality, part of communication are intertwined with functionality. The use of expression in visual design is when communication happens in both directions.

Personality in design isn't just aesthetic, it's behavioral. It does more than match users preferences, it comments on them and converses with the user. It utilizes emotions like humor to engage people. It has its own view. Conversations, let alone friends, are boring if the other person always agrees with you 110%.

At what point does UI design become dilluted by submitting to the user instead of promoting discourse?

This is a reframing of Ellen Lupton's article.

Thoughts? Let me know @Aetherpoint