Two words I often get mixed up are Aesthetic and Ascetic The funny thing is that the words mean almost the opposite.
Asthetics has to do with what is beautiful, where as Ascetic has to do with denying yourself pleasure!
I guess the guys at 37signals who deliberately produce software with fewer features might have found away to combine the two. Sometimes by choosing to prune things out of your life, a product or even a tree (I guess that is where the idiom comes from) you can end up with something more beautiful that it might otherwise have been...
1. The branch of philosophy that deals with the nature and expression of beauty, as in the fine arts.
2. (used with a sing. verb) The study of the psychological responses to beauty and artistic experiences.
3. (used with a sing. or pl. verb) A conception of what is artistically valid or beautiful: minimalist aesthetics.
4. (used with a sing. or pl. verb) An artistically beautiful or pleasing appearance: “They're looking for quality construction, not aesthetics” (Ron Schram).