In the talk by Roberto Casati I found myself rather disappointed with again not being able to define what design is. It seems to me that in the modern world, where a functional object can look nothing like we are used to seeing it, it is very easy to confuse what design really is. I guess I had a hope that Roberto Casati might give a clearer definition as the name of the talk sounded very promising – “The Norm of Design”, however, taking into account that he used to be a philosopher, a straight-forward definition might not be something to expect from a philosopher. Nevertheless, everything is not as gloomy as it seems. Even though according to Casati design cannot be clearly defined, it doesn’t mean that it cannot be found in different objects around us. The discussion that Roberto Casati led was whether or not there is design in those objects.
One example that Casati gave was whether soft covers for table corners can be considered as design. It is a common problem to see children bumping into those sharp corners of tables and banging their heads against them. One of the solutions for that are soft, silicone-like covers that you can stick on the sharp edges of a table. Even though according to Casati they could be considered design, in my opinion, it is taking the original product and altering its look, which changes its initial design.
At the end of the day I feel like design remains something that we all have our own definition for. There is really no universal definition for design, which means that there may be discussions about this question, however no correct answer.