Skeuomorphism is just a Buzzword for Familiarity

Friday, 26 April 2013

It is perhaps the ultimate triumph of accidental skeuomorphic design – when new objects or graphics ape the original functional image of what they are replicating. 

What Oliver Wainwright is describing is a skeuomorphic feature not exclusive to iOS. There are misconceptions that the term 'skeuomorphism' applies purely to aesthetics and not behaviour. Just as misconceptions about design were famously challenged, so it should for skeuomorphism. It's not about superfluous textures, shadows and gradients. But just one approach to design motivated by familiarity. Technology's increasing ubiquity, however, makes its effectiveness questionable.