Ok, I shifted the thread b/c we were getting all mixed up between the
architecture thread and this one.
It seems to me, and I'm just extrapolating, is that you believe that
design in the end is all about form? I wish this was a conversation so
that I can get a yes, no answer from you and then move in different
directions accordingly. For the purposes of this post I'm going to go
[I do think you believe in strategic design, but this doesn't seem to
be your main craft, or a main part of your argument about interface
vs. interaction design. Were you part of that group on Wikipedia
trying to squash the interaction design entry saying it was just
B/c of that you see that forms should dictate the disciplines of
design and ergo your concentration on interface instead of
interaction. What does this mean? It means from what I can tell is
that behavior is a loose by-product of what you consider to be the
primary effort which is the creation of the interface, the form from
which all behavior is communicated and or otherwise resides. Again, I
really hoped that I could get confirmation before moving on, but alas
I can't so I have to continue with possibly my false assumptions.
Now, reading lots of books that came out 07 on interaction design I
person find this really not to be the case. While software is
definitely a primary form container for interaction designer,
interaction design has to exist in many many many different form
containers. Now, as practice was interaction design used? Probably not
nearly as much as it should, but whenever there is an instrument that
can react in more than 1 way to human influence than there is
The layout of a physical keyboard on your mobile device.
The way a button feels, reacts, and responds to touch.
Whether or not to apply haptics.
Now you might say these are all industrial design problems and I have
the following responses:
1. Yea, like this is a primary part of their education? Heck no!
interaction is an after thought compared to ergonomics and at best
resides there if at all.
2. Even if it is part of the ID puzzle, I would say that it the
interaction design part of the ID puzzle the same way similar form
issues are put together to communicate interaction design within
software itself. They co-habitate the same space, THUS why and whereas
IxD is always going to be the "Jew" of design. It is a small part,
never with any real citizenship and relegated to the shtetl for one
off abuse. (Don't mean to offend, but IxD is all about metaphor, and
heck this is the best one that came to me and despite my Arab last
name I am a 100% Eastern European Ashkenazic Jew.)
My point being is that form and behavior while comingled are separatable.
Now here is the Andrei on my shoulder ... I hear a huge "So?!?" ...
"What does this have to do with the every day world of doing design?"
To me there are 4 facets or foundations that live outside of form that
are important for us to understand as interaction designers the same
way that line, shape, color, texture and negative space are for
graphic and industrial designers (volume, space are added for 3D
work). Dan Saffer in his book adds time motion and sound to the pieces
that are important as elements for interaction design, but again
besides time these are all form based.
The foundational elements I'd like to call out (and will in an
upcoming B&A article hopefully this week) are Time. None of the other
experience design disciplines besides maybe as a stretch animator.
Then there is metaphor which exists in communication design and
narrative, but in a very different way. Abstraction is another part of
interaction design that most closely correlates to what Jonas Lowgren
has been calling pliability, but for me is the more related to how far
physical action and virtual reaction are from each other. Think
mapquest vs. google maps when it comes to panning a map. Lastly is the
negative of all the above. Time is most obvious with pause or lack of
response, but there is negativity in all of this.
Gosh, so much of what I'm working on right now (which I can't talk
about) is really about the behavioral need/design first and then
figuring out the appropriate forms for the contexts I'm working in.
Sometimes this mean replacing software with hardware, sometimes this
means the opposite, and sometimes it means combining both.
I DO agree that interaction design to be really deep enough to bother
with the role of interaction designer does require software at some
level even if it is just the firmware built into a remote control for
a TV. I guess that is software in the literal sense, but NOT anything
to do with a GUI. There is a UI, and so interface design is part of
the equation, but so is interaction design as separate from it.