In his keynotes, Hartmut Esslinger speaks to the importance of design. As a designer himself, Esslinger understands this point well. However, where he diverges from many of his colleagues is the approach he takes in his craft.
Esslinger is keen to point out that a designer, in order to be effective, must take into account concepts beyond just aesthetics. Good design should be an expression of wider society in some way. As becomes clear in his keynotes, Hartmut Esslinger regards this as a practical guiding principle more so than some abstract philosophy.
The maverick designer is the founder of Frog Design, which was commissioned by Apple Computer in 1982 for an exclusive one million dollar per year contract. Esslinger has also worked with such companies as NEC, Siemens, HP, Motorola, Olympus and General Electric.
Currently, Esslinger is a Professor of convergent industrial design at the University of Applied Arts in Vienna, Austria.