1 + 1 = 3

In design, adding a single line parallel to another single line, so you have two lines rather than one, doesnt double the complexity, it triples it.

This idea was first proposed by Edward Tufte when writting on the subject of information design.

You see, when theres one line theres just a one element: The line.

Single Line

When theres two lines, theres two lines and the white space in between.

Two Lines

The same principle holds with displaying features in a product. With a single feature on display theres one element. With two features on display theres two features plus the new task of having to know which feature to use. The choice adds extra complexity.


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