Design often involves representing some signs by others, asking
What makes some representations better than others?
Thus: design as value-driven representation.
Semiotic morphisms are maps of semiotic spaces that preserve
In many real examples, not everything can or should be
- Semiotic systems are theories not models, so morphisms translate
theories, not concrete signs.
- Quality of representations is measured by how well features of
source space preserved.
- Representations can be combined; blending is special case.
E.g., book table of contents preserves structure & names of
parts, but not content.
Design is massaging source & target spaces, & morphism, to achieve
quality, subject to constraints, plus discovering and refining
values, all done iteratively.
Design principles (all with precise mathematical formulations):
Third is called Principle F/C; many special cases familiar to
- Important subsigns map to correspondingly important subsigns in
- Most important axioms also satisfied by their representations.
- Better to preserve form (i.e., structure) than content, if something
must be sacrificed.