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by Don Norman
Welcome to the world of atoms. Remember when the mantra was that bits were more important than atoms? That we could dispense with physical things because information was all that mattered? Well, that was nonsense then and it is nonsense now.
The human body is part of the physical world. It savors touch and feeling, movement and action. How else to explain the popularity of physical devices, of games that require gestures, and full-body movement?
Want to develop for this new world? There are new rules for interacting with the world, new rules for the developers of systems. But the new rules still follow the old principles. Let’s not throw away the old lessons of interaction. In fact, these become even more important than ever before. And yes, there are some new things to learn as well, new technologies to master, new words to learn.
Today the need is for complex, rich, emotionally satisfying things. It is no longer just about function and service. Those are still important, but they are taken for granted. Today we must add convenience and comfort, fun and excitement, pleasure. We needed to develop applications that both delivered real value but also was high in emotional value, experience, and engagement.
by Kelly Goto
Addiction or devotion? The complexity of our relationships between connected experiences, devices and people is increasing. Stanley Kubrick once said a film “should be a progression of moods and feelings. The theme, what‛s behind the emotion, the meaning, all that comes later”.
Design ethnographer Kelly Goto presents underlying emotional indicators that reveal surprising attachments to brands, products, services and devices. Gain insight on designing user experiences that map to people‛s real needs and desires.
Design (or if you prefer—user experience) is at a crossroads. In our globalized, hyper-connected world, users no longer need to wait for us to create experiences for them. As we debate the value of design thinking, the usefulness of the next API, or strive to craft the ultimate cross-platform experience—users are sorting this out on their own, using whatever service or technology is “good enough” for them at the time.
What happens to your brand, your product, and your bottom line when users choose “good enough”, over your carefully crafted product or service? Is it a sign of failure, a missed opportunity, or a chance to dive head first towards a new reality?
by Craig Mod
We will always debate:
the quality of the paper, the pixel density of the display;
the cloth used on covers, the interface for highlighting;
location by page, location by paragraph.
This is not what matters. Surface is secondary.
What are the core systems comprising the future book? What are the tools that need to be built?
As designers we will need to provide the scaffolding for these systems. The interfaces for these tools. Not just as surface, but holistically—understanding the shifting of emotional space, the import of the artifact, the evocation of a souvenir, digitally.
How will we surface the myriad data just below the words of digital books in organic, clean and deliberately designed ways? How will we shape the future book?
The relationship between digital and physical products is larger than if it exists on a hard drive or a shelf. It’s the tension between access and ownership, searching and finding, sharing and collecting. It’s a dance between the visible and the invisible, and what happens when we’re forced to remember versus when we are allowed to forget. How does this affect us—not just as makers, but as consumers of these products? Does collecting things matter if we don’t revisit them? We may download, bookmark, tag, organize, and star, but what then?
A digital Zen master would say that if everything is starred, nothing is. We’ve optimized the system for getting things in, but how do we get something good out? How can we make meaningful connections between all of this stuff, and make constellations out of all these stars?
by Dan Hon
Forget transmedia. Forget alternate and augmented realities. Forget multimedia magazines, tablets, phones and puzzling QR codes. Our challenge lies in figuring out the full-stack of entertainment, designed from the bottom right to the very top: for phones, physical objects—part of the Internet of things or otherwise—tablets and conventional computing devices, where art, code and design mesh together perfectly with directorial vision.
These teams producing our next generation of entertainment are right at the heart of Steve Jobs’ placing of Apple at the intersection of liberal arts and technology. Where did they come from, how are they evolving entertainment and how are they making storytelling, play, code and technology sing?
by Kars Alfrink
When you think of a city, what is the first thing that comes to mind? Most likely it is the stuff that it is made up of: its streets and buildings, its parks and squares. But what sets a city apart, aside from its architecture, is how all that stuff is put to use. A city’s nightlife, a city’s cuisine, a city’s culture. In other words, what people make of the space they live in when they are at play.
Play isn’t limited to the ‘soft side’ of urbanism. In fact, it turns out a building isn’t some prefixed structure capable of doing one thing only. Adaptation and reuse continuously transform what a city’s architecture is for, often from the bottom up. In this way, a city’s people shape their homes as well, quite literally.
What is at work in this process of city transformation, is nothing less than play. In cities, just as in games, people and the space they inhabit shape each other. Thus, in our Western cities, where reuse is overtaking construction of new space, we are all becoming architects.
In this session Kars looks at how game culture and play shape the urban fabric, how we might design systems that improve people’s capacity to do so, and how you yourself, through play, can transform the city you call home.
I punch in a keycode and enter the office. Three steps through the door I swipe my travelcard against an old wooden box, which starts spitting out a radio station based on forty million people’s answer to the question ‘What songs would a Joy Division fan like?’ The sexyfuture arrived yesterday, and it colonised my pockets.
Even on the days you leave your phone at home, you carry enough hacked objects to unlock space and time, provided you find the right door. What should we be thinking about as we bring our products to life? What are we strapping to our keyrings? And what does all of this mean for a scale we’ve been familiar with for centuries?
Matthew will empty his pockets live at dConstruct to find out, revealing the five things he’s carrying around with him in Brighton and why.
by Kevin Slavin
Lately, Augmented Reality (AR) has come to stand for the highest and deepest form of synthesis between the digital and physical worlds. Slavin will outline an argument for rethinking what really augments reality and what the benefits are, as well as the costs.
Rather than considering AR as a technology, we will consider the goals we have for it, and how those are best addressed. Along the way, we’ll look at the history and future of seeing, with a series of stories, most of which are mostly true.
AR may be where all this goes. But how it gets there, and where there is, is up for debate. This is intended to serve to start or end that debate, or at a minimum, to bring the conference to a close by pointing at the future, perhaps in the wrong direction.
2nd September 2011