Designing Startups: Re-design your ideas with two courses

Smiling male student posing with a computer

A philosophy professor of mine once told a story of a computer scientist who wanted to improve his programming ability. He decided to take a course with this professor to learn more about the Chuang-Tzu, the (often befuddling) writings of a pre-modern Chinese, Taoist philosopher. It can be difficult, especially considering the inherent structure and technical nature of computer science, to find creative ways of thinking. The Chuang-Tzu presents different scenarios in a confusing, chaotic, yet relatable way that helps shed new insight on the happenings of everyday situations.

In a day and age where specialization precedes inspiration, we always need new perspectives. Success is driven by those who are able to not only adapt, but also evolve. Accredible currently supports two self-paced Udacity courses that provide new perspectives in the field of entrepreneurship: one covers practical, hands-on business development for startups while the other covers creative and innovative design principles.

The first of the two is How to Build a Startup, a course in which Steve Blank, a prominent Silicon Valley entrepreneur, demystifies the process of structuring the implementation of your ideas around customer development and reduced risk. This course allows learners to acquire tactics for getting feedback and using that to further build the idea. The required skill set, as posted on the course page, includes passion, tenacity and a willingness to work hard.

Intro to the Design of Everyday Things aims to alter the way you view design in all facets of your life, not just your business. Don Norman, a decorated academic and former VP at Apple and Executive at HP, leads the course with Kristian Simsarian, founder and chair of the undergraduate Interaction Design at the California College of the Arts. The course covers the first two chapters of Norman’s book by the same title.

Together, these two courses create a unique window into creative design and entrepreneurship, and show how you can change your thinking to best reflect your ideas, thus allowing them to properly manifest. As with many things in life (pragmatism and idealism, light and dark, good and bad), practicality paired with new ways of thinking allows for maximal creativity in your pursuits.