IxD in Open Source Software projects

17 Sep 2006 - 12:00pm
8 years ago
5 replies
986 reads
peter sikking
2006

David wrote:

> As someone with little to no experience with Open Source
> interaction design projects, I would be really interested to hear
> from those of you about your experiences on these projects.

After 13 years of working on the interaction of commercial software
and a couple of years being involved with open source, including
regular discussion on integration at the openUsability meetings
here in Berlin, I can tell you the following:

It never ceases to amaze me how 100% identical commercial and
open source development is. This covers the project management
structures, team sizes (4 agile developers grow into a 100-man
behemoth, and all the knowledge is still only in those 4 heads),
the scarceness of development time and resources, the whole
'selling' process we interaction specialist still have to do
to convert "we have to improve our UI" into "we structurally
have to integrate interaction architecture and usability into
our process." And so on and on.

The good thing about is that what you learn in open source
project can be directly used in commercial space. You can
go to openusability.org, select an open source project
that you find really cool (and whose commercial brothers
would never call you to get their interaction sorted out)
and see if you hit it off with the central people in the
project. If you do, you got yourself a dream job, and
can built up a great reference that can be fully disclosed
(no NDAs), to the minute detail.

Is adobe going to call me to sort out photoshop? Fat chance.
But I have started working on the GIMP and I know that it
going to be really cool.

<http://gimp.org/announcements/open-usability-gimp.html>

--ps

principal user interaction architect
man + machine interface works

http://mmiworks.net/blog : on interaction architecture

Comments

17 Sep 2006 - 12:13pm
Esteban Barahona
2006

2006/9/17, peter sikking <peter en mmiworks.net>:
>
> The good thing about is that what you learn in open source
> project can be directly used in commercial space. You can
> go to openusability.org, select an open source project
> that you find really cool (and whose commercial brothers
> would never call you to get their interaction sorted out)
> and see if you hit it off with the central people in the
> project. If you do, you got yourself a dream job, and
> can built up a great reference that can be fully disclosed
> (no NDAs), to the minute detail.
>
> Is adobe going to call me to sort out photoshop? Fat chance.
> But I have started working on the GIMP and I know that it
> going to be really cool.
>
> <http://gimp.org/announcements/open-usability-gimp.html>

Glad to hear that. I am starting a serious FOSS IxD project, but it will
take some time to develop and test. Those GIMP has open positions for IxD
developement? Are you goiung to colaborate?

At least if an Interaction Designer know Graphic D. it can work in web
design or print publishing, etc. IMO, FOSS is a great oportunity to work in
IxD (and the FOSS community needs lots of Interaction Designers).

18 Sep 2006 - 9:17am
Michael Micheletti
2006

Thank you Peter for volunteering on the GIMP. Just so you know, I tried it
for a while but gave up - too many involuntary twitches from Photoshop
reflexes. But one of the Java coders here loves it. It made me wonder what
sort of user the GIMP was really aimed at. Good luck with your good work,

Michael Micheletti

On 9/17/06, peter sikking <peter at mmiworks.net> wrote:
>
> [Please voluntarily trim replies to include only relevant quoted
> material.]
>
> Is adobe going to call me to sort out photoshop? Fat chance.
> But I have started working on the GIMP and I know that it
> going to be really cool.
>
> <http://gimp.org/announcements/open-usability-gimp.html>
>
>

18 Sep 2006 - 5:18pm
peter sikking
2006

Michael,

> Thank you Peter for volunteering on the GIMP. Just so you know, I
> tried it for a while but gave up - too many involuntary twitches
> from Photoshop reflexes. But one of the Java coders here loves it.
> It made me wonder what sort of user the GIMP was really aimed at.
> Good luck with your good work,

The first result I achieved with the GIMP was to sit down with
the whole team and to formulate a product vision with them.

we really had to answer the question there what the GIMP actually is
(I also have the feeling at adobe they are not quite sure what ps
is anymore).

the result is near the bottom of this page:
<http://developer.gimp.org/gimpcon/2006/index.html>

interesting is that is took only 30 seconds to reach consensus
that the GIMP is not a photoshop clone. There would be no point
in that. So we won't entertain any complaints about ps-GIMP
discrepancies anymore.

also we discussed whether the GIMP is for making UI and website
mock-ups. We rejected that because it would mean seriously
supporting this activity with a load of special functionality
and interaction that would fit ill with the core activity of
image editing.

As I put it: designing interaction is about structure,
a pixel oriented program is not suitable for that.

--ps

principal user interaction architect
man + machine interface works

http://mmiworks.net/blog : on interaction architecture

19 Sep 2006 - 9:43am
Michael Micheletti
2006

Hi Peter,

Thanks for the link. The "just what are we building and for who" discussion
is a hard one for dev teams to wrap brains around - nice going to get them
there. The combo of "we're not photoshop" and "don't say bad things about
photoshop" seems like exactly the right approach. Let the group know please
when there's a new GIMP release you'd like us to look at; I'm sure the
application will be a novel source of
amazement/confusion/empowerment/delight to many. All the best,

Michael

On 9/18/06, peter sikking <peter at mmiworks.net> wrote:
>
> [Please voluntarily trim replies to include only relevant quoted
> material.]
>
> The first result I achieved with the GIMP was to sit down with
> the whole team and to formulate a product vision with them.
>
> we really had to answer the question there what the GIMP actually is
> (I also have the feeling at adobe they are not quite sure what ps
> is anymore).
>
> the result is near the bottom of this page:
> <http://developer.gimp.org/gimpcon/2006/index.html>
>
> interesting is that is took only 30 seconds to reach consensus
> that the GIMP is not a photoshop clone. There would be no point
> in that. So we won't entertain any complaints about ps-GIMP
> discrepancies anymore.
>
>

22 Sep 2006 - 11:48am
peter sikking
2006

On 17 Sep 2006, at 20:00, I wrote:

> Is adobe going to call me to sort out photoshop? Fat chance.
> But I have started working on the GIMP and I know that it
> going to be really cool.
>
> <http://gimp.org/announcements/open-usability-gimp.html>

A bit more news from this front.

The nice thing about open source is that it is so, ehm, open.

So having finished the selection procedure for this project,
I thought I put my experience on paper and blog about "how does
one identify an up‐and‐coming interaction architect?"

teaser:

"Another vibe I look for in a CV is an absolute determination to make
it in interaction architecture. This is still absolutely necessary in
the software and web industry of today."

read more: http://mmiworks.net/blog

--ps

principal user interaction architect
man + machine interface works

http://mmiworks.net/blog : on interaction architecture

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