A very simple approach - "Liberate"
The approach I use in the design and development of linear time-based and non-linear interactive media focuses primarily on understanding the context of the media's use, for example the proposed subject matter, desired outcomes and importantly the intended users and/or audience. I ignores, at least initially, all budgetary, physical and technological restrictions in consideration of the ideal solution, the ideal user experience. Only when the ideal solution is understood do I then rein in the dream and begin the process of negotiating compromises. The approach ensures the client articulates what they want rather than asking what can they can have.
At first reading such an approach seems an obvious one and in truth it is. However it is not commonly practiced. After all what kind of company would take the time to encourage its clients (to coin a lyrical phrase) 'dream the impossible dream' knowing it is probable that they would not be able to fulfil the requirements (wish list) that emerges from such a process.The approach is counterintuitive, and does not sit well with everyday business practices. But it is the only way to design highly effective innovative and above all attainable user experiences.
What can I have? - "Forget about it!"
Please, please, please where ever possible, fight the urge to ask the question "what is possible with digital media?" Now I would suggest that this is akin to asking "what can we do with a 10cm block of wood?" Bear with me here. Our block of wood could be carved into a sculpture; it could be cut into a door stop; heat our home - chopped up to make a fire. But it can also be used to enable us fly! - as in feet off the ground soaring through the air kind of flying. FANTASTIC! After all the wood could be fashioned into a component used in the construction of an aircraft. If you think about it, the list for our wood block really is endless. Some of the possibilities are obvious while others are less obvious but potentially life chanaging even liberating.
The possibilities afforded by digital media are endless. So if a "what is possible with digital media?"or a similar question ever comes to your mind, then in the inimitable words of Frank Vitale, I would suggest you "Forget about it!" (Mickey Blue Eyes 1999) and instead ask yourself "what do I need/want?" and not "what can I have?" A primary role of a good designer is to help their client truly understand their needs and desires.