I'm starting to accept that design isn't all about the visual aspect of it. Everything is designed in some way or another. I think I'll come back to this concept of in more detail after I've had a while to ponder over it. It has never really hit me before, but I'm glad it has now.
I was speaking to my grandad who was a research chemist. If you are looking to design something new, you consult what was there before. In his case he would consult books. I think it was Plutonium he mentioned (I do listen but my memory fails me a lot...) was a not-so-new-but-new-enough man-made element (again design!)... he had very little to refer back to, no books had been written about it. So he would have had to rely on experimentation and what people around him had found out. That must have been exciting to work with something new but also tough as you wouldn't know how it reacted or anything.
These days there aren't things that are completely new, you can find out everything about everything if you look for it...
I'm not too sure where I am going with this and its getting late, so I'll leave it there and perhaps think a bit more :)