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Interaction design

Interaction design defines the structure and content of communication between two or more interactive “beings” to understand each other. (source: Wikipedia)

From interactables to architectonic interaction

Architecture and interaction. And where is information?

“The fields of interaction design (IxD) and architecture are increasingly intertwined [1]. Architecture is to a large extent produced through the use of digital tools, and digital technologies are increasingly integrated with our built environment. However, these integrations themselves certainly have transformative effects. For example, as the drawing of buildings is primarily done with CAD technologies, the practice of sketching and drawing is also changed. The same can be said about computer-enhanced buildings. Through the integration of digital technologies into our built environment, one physical space can be designed to allow for easy reconfigurations of that space so as to serve many different purposes and activities. As such, digital technologies challenge a core idea in architecture—that the physical environment is hard to reconfigure—and further, that since the physical space both allows for and restricts the social space, it is important that architecture consider the design of the physical environment in relation to the social activity it is intended to support.”

Mikael Wiberg a.k.a. /mikael-wiberg ~ ACM Interactions XXXIV.2

The interaction-attention continuum: Considering various levels of human attention in interaction design

Attention, the 21st century human currency.

“The article discusses the need to develop interaction designs that are usable at various levels of attention, providing a continuum to facilitate designer-researcher in applying this notion. This continuum and the design considerations we derive from case studies are relevant when designing interactive systems for everyday routines.”

Saskia Bakker and Karin Niemantsverdriet ~ International Journal of Design 10.2

Why is sketching (still) important (to design)?

First visual contours of the design, a sketch.

“(…) if we think of design as a sequence of iterative phases that progress towards final production, we are then able to identify an open or fuzzy phase of design. In this we contrast a divergent conceptual design ideation with a more convergent, specific and detailed design phase. We do this as much to contrast the different aims of design at these different phases of the process, as to highlight the kinds of design work involved or tools used at any given stage.”

James Self ~ Core77

NewsFlash no. 7,000: On the significance of making in interaction design research

Great to have found this newsflash after almost 20 years.

“The notion of making seems to be gaining some traction lately. When I talk to people outside academia about interaction design and new media, making often comes up, with references to physical computing, 3D printing, and Maker Faires, and overtones of grassroots activism and yet another this-changes-everything movement. I note a corresponding increase in the interaction design research discourse—but here, the word is used slightly more broadly to include construction, programming, and other craft-like activities forming part of the core of traditional design practice. That is also the sense in which I will be using the word here.”

Jonas Löwgren a.k.a. /jonaslowgren ~ ACM Interactions Magazine

OOUX: A foundation for interaction design

Where’s The Gang of Four?

“That’s what Object Oriented UX is all about—thinking in terms of objects before actions. In my previous article, we learned how to define objects and design a framework based on those objects. This time, we’re exploring how to smoothly transition from big-picture OOUX to interaction design by using a very simple tool: the CTA (‘Call-To-Action’) Inventory.”

Sophia Voychehovski a.k.a. /sophiav | @sophiavux ~ A List Apart

Temporal form in interaction design

Or how to integrate computation into interaction design.

“In this paper, we show the power of working explicitly with temporal form in designing computational things. We give a nuanced account of what temporal form is in interaction design, and we look at related work synthesizing what we already know of the temporal concerns in interaction design and HCI. In the second part we present a design experiment through which we explore the experiential qualities of a set of 11 simple temporal forms by letting a series of expert designers reflect upon them. We borrow a framework from Boorstin’s film theory in which he distinguishes between the voyeuristic, the vicarious, and the visceral experience. We show how to use rhythms, complexity, gentle or forceful behavior, etc., to create experiences of ‘being alive’, being entertained, or being something that we empathize with. We end the paper by arguing how the temporal form in computational things enables richer experiences than static objects do.”

Anna Vallgårda, Morten Winther, Nina Mørch, and Edit E. Vizer ~ International Journal of Design Vol. 9(3) Dec. 2015

Micro-moments: Are you designing for them?

Moment-of-truth, the tiny versions.

“Mobile devices have changed our lives in many more ways than we can realize. They are just part of us now, and we have lost sight of how we behaved before. As user experience designers, we also have to play the part of anthropologists: well, a little. We need to understand our target users’ culture. In these fast-paced times, it can be hard to get time to stop, stand back, and look at what’s going on in the big picture. However, that’s the point: given that smartphones alone have changed life so much, it might take some effort to stop peering into their screens and see what’s happened to us as a species!”

Muriel Garreta Domingo a.k.a. /murielgd ~ Interaction Design Foundation

Scripted interaction

It seems hard to design for interaction when technology is evolving very rapidly. Unless you approach the problem in a more abstract fashion.

“Interaction design is a label for a field of research and for a practice. When we design interactive tools and gadgets we do interaction design. But what is it that we’re designing? And is this practice changing? Let me reflect on this a little bit.”

Mikael Wiberg a.k.a. /mikael-wiberg ~ ACM Interactions

From wayfinding to interaction design

Allways thought wayfinding had more in common with navigation and information architecture. Features (a.k.a. code) and data (a.k.a. content) perspectives differ.

“Wayfinding is the process of planning and making journeys through spaces; wayfinding design companies develop systems to help make this planning and journey-making easier. These systems come in all shapes and sizes, and can cover area naming, signage design, cartography, defining route networks and installing new landmarks to give an area more character.”

(Matt Cooper-Wright ak.a. @matt_speaks ~ Medium)

Sketch in Enterprise UX

As a matter of exception, a tool item in an interesting context.

“There is an old adage that says ‘Use the right tool for the job’. However, with technology and User Experience Design, knowing which tools to use can be a bit nuanced. Often there are many tools for the job, all of which have their strengths and weakness. I’ve been thinking about a recently popular tool, Sketch, and where it fits into our practice of Enterprise UX Design.”

(Jaron Frasier a.k.a. @frason ~ Designmap) courtesy of @BaardAard

How words are the foundation of interaction design

From words to stories, even in interactions.

“The words you choose, and how you put them together, will greatly influence your product’s overall message – and we’ll explain how using some words of our own. Below we’ll show you why words are the base of interaction design and how to know the context of the copy.”

(Jerry Cao a.k.a. @jerrycao_uxpin ~ Sitepoint)

Interaction design meets architectural thinking

Beside design thinking, we now have architectural thinking as well.

“Architecture is the classic, established approach to the design of our built environment. For hundreds of years, architects have focused on the design of our physical surroundings to define the frames for our lives. In doing so, architecture has established itself as the tradition of working with the material and artificial aspects of our physical surroundings to support the social and cultural aspects of our lives. With this as its primary focus, architecture as a discipline and a practice shares several characteristics with interaction design. Architecture is people-centered yet design-oriented; it deals with the intersection of human factors and artificial matters—that is, the material, designed aspects of our everyday lives.”

(Mikael Wiberg ~ ACM Interaction Magazine March/April 2015)

What is an interaction designer?

Nifty examples of digital behavior and user interaction.

“These two little words are being used a lot in the design sphere these days. But what truly is interaction design? And what makes you an interaction designer? Here, we’ll answer both of those questions and offer a showcase of some great interaction design work. (…) Users expect interactive experiences on modern websites. There is no way around it. In order to keep current and keep users coming back, having such interaction is necessary. Having someone on your team who is responsible for managing, creating and monitoring these interactions is equally important. You will need an interaction designer.”

(Carrie Cousins a.k.a. @carriecousins ~ Designmodo)

Making and breaking UX best practices

Re-usable components, elements and patterns, the Holy Grail on UX Design.

“Imagine a website with a beautiful, enticing, full-screen image, where a transparent button leads to pages of well constructed, adaptive content. The navigation functions perfectly across devices, switching from a horizontal to a mobile menu at just the right times. Unfortunately a large portion of the potential audience lives in Africa, and won’t have the bandwidth to use it. Does that mean our best practices failed us? No, it means that an experience is made up of more than the sum of its parts.”

(Brendon Cornwell a.k.a. @bcornwell ~ The UX Booth)

Undesigning interaction

A really good start of any article: “This article has no pictures. I don’t want to disappoint readers who are expecting glossy images, straightforward examples, or prescriptive methods. I’m not going to give any.”

“The point of this article is to motivate ‘undesign thinking’ and rethink the familiar forms of interaction design. I want to recast with positive connotations the words we have for articulating what is objectively negative. Doing so will hopefully allow us to speak and write more openly and productively about designing to inhibit, displace, erase, or foreclose. But beyond speaking and writing about design, I want to suggest practical design action. Not just the type of practical action we typically think of as interaction design, but forms of design that may seem too different or else too trivial to fall within the scope of interaction design. Indeed, thinking in negative terms about design may require us to broaden our understanding of practical action. Is replacing a digital technology with a non-digital technology interaction design? Is replacing a high-tech digital display with a paper display interaction design? Is removing Wi-Fi interaction design? (…) At the very least, such intentions, actions, and outcomes suggest both opportunities and responsibilities for interaction design—regardless of whether we call them undesign, design, or something else altogether.”

(James Pierce ~ ACM Interactions Magazine July + August 2014)

Interaction design for the internet of things

And all the other UX disciplines for the IoT as well.

“While the technological development around this area is indeed fascinating, it is from my perspective even more interesting to see where this will take interaction design over the next few years. From an interaction design perspective, it is always interesting to explore what this digital material can do for us in terms of enabling new user experiences and the development of new digital services.”

(Mikael Wiberg ~ ACM Interactions Magazine)