Brief books for people who make websites


Dan Brown Practical Design Discovery

Discovery isn’t just the first step in successful design work—it’s the most essential one.
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Read a Sample Chapter

Design discovery is crucial to a project’s success—unite your team in an approach toward a common goal. Explore the role of discovery in product design, how to use and structure your favorite techniques for success, and how to synthesize and document what you learn. With Dan Brown’s flexible framework for planning and practicing discovery activities, you’ll set every design endeavor on the right path.


  1. Discovery Defined
  2. Frame the Problem
  3. Set the Direction
  4. Plan Your Approach
  5. Document the Outcome

Recommended with…

Design for Real Life

Start every project off right with practical design discovery and learn how to design experiences through a lens of kindness.

Buy both and save up to 15%

  • Paperbacks

    $37.50 + shipping
  • ebooks


    Supports Kindle, iBooks, Nook and most other readers and devices.

  • Paperbacks & ebooks


    Supports Kindle, iBooks, Nook and most other readers and devices.

    $57.00 + shipping

What People Are Saying

  • If Dan gives a talk, I listen to get fresh insights. If Dan writes a book, I buy it, knowing it will contain exactly what my students need to level up. His new book on discovery is no exception. It’s insightful, accessible, and wonderfully practical. The next generation of designers will be better than the last because of Practical Design Discovery.

  • Every day, product people get stuck in the trap of building instead of learning. In this book, Dan focuses on what really makes a great product: a discovery mindset. Along the way, he demystifies the process and provides a practical guide to start discovering your users’ real needs.

  • I have long been a practitioner and proponent of product discovery, and yet I learned a great deal from this book. It lays a good foundation for the approach, addresses some of discovery’s shortcomings I’ve experienced in the past, and gave me great new ideas to try in my projects, to boot. Above all, it made me excited about the power of discovery—I recommend Dan’s book without reservation.

About the Author

Dan Brown is a web designer and cofounder of EightShapes, LLC, a Washington, DC-based design firm he opened with Nathan Curtis in 2006. Dan’s portfolio includes work with Fortune 500 clients, nonprofits, industry associations, higher education, and the federal government. Prior to Practical Design Discovery, Dan wrote two books: Communicating Design (New Riders, 2011) explores how designers document their ideas and Designing Together (New Riders, 2013) promotes better collaboration. Teams all over the world have played his game Surviving Design Projects, to learn and practice conflict management skills. He tweets as @brownorama about design, management, board games, parenthood, and coffee.

Additional Info

  • ISBN: 978-1-937557-44-7
  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Published: Feb 14, 2017

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