Like a lamb to the AI slaughter

I have a hunch the AI revolution will be akin to the product design revolution in the early 2010s.

In the twenty-teens, traditional graphic designers were unwilling (for better & worse) to embrace product design. When the pendulum swung heavily to digital later in the decade, they struggled to catch up.

I spoke at HOW Conference several times during those formative years of graphic designers switching to product design, and the audience was full of traditional graphic designers perplexed about their future. Two themes emerged from my convos with audience members:

✣ "I really don't want to embrace it but I see the writing on the wall."
✣ "My employer sent me here to learn product design."

Today the tables have turned. Product designers are facing an ever-increasing future driven by AI across all phases of design. For many the question looming in the back of their minds is identical to that of traditional graphic designers years ago:

"Is this really how I want to evolve as a designer?"

Look, it's too early to tell precisely how enormous AI's impact will be — after all it wasn't long ago that we all thought NFTs were the overlords of our future — but it's fair to assume AI's impact could be significant and career-changing for many.

Best advice I can offer? Maintain caution and skepticism about AI's future, but don't wait sheepishly until the train has left the station to start somewhere.