There seems to be a growing dissatisfaction in some circles of the design world. Many people, especially those getting a little older, seem to want the community to move the focus from aesthetically pleasing baubles to solving real problems.

I couldn't agree more. If we could have a few more start ups focused on clean water, healthcare, or food shortages and a few less that are focused on helping us read everything or recommending movies to our friends, the rest of the world might join us in saying that technology and design can make a difference.

But solving real problems requires time. Downtime. Thinking time. And silence. I hope there are a whack of designers and developers out there — young and old — who are looking to break free from the cycle of social media updates so they can find inspiration and vision to solve bigger issues.

One such designer is Jason VanLue. He and Sean McCabe are writing a book that will tackle these issues. I think our industry should be thinking and reading about this subject. So go back this project.

Then spend 50 minutes in silence, thinking of a problem you'd like to see solved.