IxD definition WAS Interaction Design for ESLTextbooks?

12 Sep 2007 - 9:54pm
6 years ago
23 replies
688 reads
Jack L. Moffett
2005

On Sep 12, 2007, at 9:54 PM, Jeff White wrote:

> But really the skills needed to redesign things like how the
> postal service interacts with it's customers, being more human
> centered, etc
> could be totally exclusive from the skills needed by an interaction
> designer.

Sure, it could be. But I can't believe that the end result would have
been as effective as the solution that the team at CMU arrived at.
It's more than just UCD—there are methods, tools, artifacts, ways of
thinking, etc. that make it a Design activity, rather than just a
business, planning, customer relations, or other activity.

The proof is in the pudding. Last semester, my students designed an
event for high school students. The college had put on events with
similar goals many times before. Our event was many times more
successful than any event they have had in the past 20 - 30 years. It
was the process we followed that resulted in success. It was the
process we followed that made it Service Design rather than event
planning. One of my students had the honor of presenting a poster
about the project at the Emergence conference this past weekend.
http://www.design.cmu.edu/emergence/2007/program/

Jack

Jack L. Moffett
Interaction Designer
inmedius
412.459.0310 x219
http://www.inmedius.com

Charles Eames was asked the question,
"What are the boundaries of design?"

He answered,

"What are the boundaries of problems?"

- Charles Eames

Comments

13 Sep 2007 - 2:24pm
Mark Schraad
2006

This is an interesting thought... and it brings to mind the difference between a purposed definition (one that brings 'you' value) and a less subjective (or what the feild of philosophy might call a 'god's eye' view), and which is ultimately more accurate. I am all for the shaping of a profession for optimization of return... not so much in favor of manipulating the definition of a discipline for gain. I pose these as extremes, Jeff, not as a representation of what you are calling for.

Mark

On Thursday, September 13, 2007, at 02:15PM, "Jeff White" <jwhite31 at gmail.com> wrote:

>IxD *can* or *could* be just about anything, and that level of vagueness is
>what makes this train of thought kind of meaningless in my opinion. I think
>the real question is what *should* it - and not just from a touchy feely,
>blue sky, idealistic point of view. I need something realistic that delivers
>value to me *now*. I like the digital product focus of the about face
>2.0definition of IxD.

14 Sep 2007 - 12:01am
Jack L. Moffett
2005

On Sep 13, 2007, at 10:25 PM, Jeff White wrote:

> Cool. Sorry for killing the conversation. I would like for more to
> come out
> of it

So you wouldn't mind, then, if I pull it back where it started? ;)

I do believe there are distinctions between Information Design,
Graphic Design, Interaction Design, and so forth. I'm not claiming
that the event my students hosted was an Interaction Design project.
It was Service Design, although there were IxD contributions.

I'd like to go back to the textbook. In the interest of trying to
focus the discussion somewhat, I'll make a proposal, and then you all
can shoot it full of holes. (Maybe it will draw fire away from Jeff
H. for a few minutes. ;)

Textbook as Graphic Design Project
A Graphic Designer is hired by a publisher to design the new version
of a textbook. The designer begins by researching existing textbooks.
He collects examples of particularly effective information
visualizations and makes notes about how information is organized. At
the same time, he is receiving content from his client and learning
about the book's subject. He works with his client to determine the
chapters, sections, etc. He may even attend a class to observe how
the book is to be used or talk to students who are using the previous
version. Once he has the content and the structure, he begins
organizing the content into spreads, sketching layouts and diagrams,
and selecting photography and illustrations. He decides on locations
and sizes for page numbering, section headings, footnotes, etc. He
creates a mock-up of the book and works with the customer to revise
it. He may show it to students or teachers to gauge acceptance.
Finally, the book is approved by the client and goes to press.

Textbook as Interaction Design Project
An Interaction Designer is hired by a publisher to design the new
version of a textbook. She begins by researching the course. She
learns about the students—their motives for taking the course, level
of interest in the subject, level of prior knowledge, what they
intend to do with new knowledge, what makes the subject easy or
difficult, enjoyable or onerous. She learns about the teachers—their
motives for teaching the course, their goals for the students, their
prior experience teaching, things they find helpful, and problems
they have.

The designer may then generate personas representing teachers and
students (users). She will work with the client and users to explore
new ideas for how the course could be improved, including use of the
textbook, and possibly other materials as well. She will likely write
scenarios showing how the new course concepts compare to the current
course. In conjunction with the scenarios, she may create flowcharts
illustrating paths through the topics covered by the course. She will
create a sample chapter or two based on the new design with a
corresponding class plan and supporting materials (a prototype). Then
she sets up a user test in which actual teachers and students run
through the sample lesson. Based on the observations and feedback
generated, she proceeds to design the rest of the book and other
course materials. After Course 2.0 is deployed, she gathers feedback
to validate the design.

In summary, I would say that the first case, while possibly including
some degree of UCD, is not Interaction Design. The second case is
Interaction Design, but not simply because it is user centered.

Alright, have at it!

Jack

Jack L. Moffett
Interaction Designer
inmedius
412.459.0310 x219
http://www.inmedius.com

When I am working on a problem,
I never think about beauty.
I think only of how to solve the problem.

But when I have finished,
if the solution is not beautiful,
I know it is wrong.

- R. Buckminster Fuller

14 Sep 2007 - 8:47am
White, Jeff
2007

"So you wouldn't mind, then, if I pull it back where it started? ;)"

Absolutely not. :-)

I'm missing what exactly in the second example is IxD. Can you clarify? It's
clearly UCD. My basic understanding of IxD is that a human does something to
something (they interact) and that something has a response. I still don't
see how a book responds to a person w/o getting super theoretical.

On 9/14/07, Jack Moffett <jmoffett at inmedius.com> wrote:
>
>
> On Sep 13, 2007, at 10:25 PM, Jeff White wrote:
>
> > Cool. Sorry for killing the conversation. I would like for more to
> > come out
> > of it
>
> So you wouldn't mind, then, if I pull it back where it started? ;)
>
>
> I do believe there are distinctions between Information Design,
> Graphic Design, Interaction Design, and so forth. I'm not claiming
> that the event my students hosted was an Interaction Design project.
> It was Service Design, although there were IxD contributions.
>
> I'd like to go back to the textbook. In the interest of trying to
> focus the discussion somewhat, I'll make a proposal, and then you all
> can shoot it full of holes. (Maybe it will draw fire away from Jeff
> H. for a few minutes. ;)
>
>
> Textbook as Graphic Design Project
> A Graphic Designer is hired by a publisher to design the new version
> of a textbook. The designer begins by researching existing textbooks.
> He collects examples of particularly effective information
> visualizations and makes notes about how information is organized. At
> the same time, he is receiving content from his client and learning
> about the book's subject. He works with his client to determine the
> chapters, sections, etc. He may even attend a class to observe how
> the book is to be used or talk to students who are using the previous
> version. Once he has the content and the structure, he begins
> organizing the content into spreads, sketching layouts and diagrams,
> and selecting photography and illustrations. He decides on locations
> and sizes for page numbering, section headings, footnotes, etc. He
> creates a mock-up of the book and works with the customer to revise
> it. He may show it to students or teachers to gauge acceptance.
> Finally, the book is approved by the client and goes to press.
>
>
> Textbook as Interaction Design Project
> An Interaction Designer is hired by a publisher to design the new
> version of a textbook. She begins by researching the course. She
> learns about the students—their motives for taking the course, level
> of interest in the subject, level of prior knowledge, what they
> intend to do with new knowledge, what makes the subject easy or
> difficult, enjoyable or onerous. She learns about the teachers—their
> motives for teaching the course, their goals for the students, their
> prior experience teaching, things they find helpful, and problems
> they have.
>
> The designer may then generate personas representing teachers and
> students (users). She will work with the client and users to explore
> new ideas for how the course could be improved, including use of the
> textbook, and possibly other materials as well. She will likely write
> scenarios showing how the new course concepts compare to the current
> course. In conjunction with the scenarios, she may create flowcharts
> illustrating paths through the topics covered by the course. She will
> create a sample chapter or two based on the new design with a
> corresponding class plan and supporting materials (a prototype). Then
> she sets up a user test in which actual teachers and students run
> through the sample lesson. Based on the observations and feedback
> generated, she proceeds to design the rest of the book and other
> course materials. After Course 2.0 is deployed, she gathers feedback
> to validate the design.
>
>
> In summary, I would say that the first case, while possibly including
> some degree of UCD, is not Interaction Design. The second case is
> Interaction Design, but not simply because it is user centered.
>
> Alright, have at it!
>
> Jack
>
> Jack L. Moffett
> Interaction Designer
> inmedius
> 412.459.0310 x219
> http://www.inmedius.com
>
>
> When I am working on a problem,
> I never think about beauty.
> I think only of how to solve the problem.
>
> But when I have finished,
> if the solution is not beautiful,
> I know it is wrong.
>
> - R. Buckminster Fuller
>
>
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> List Guidelines ............ http://beta.ixda.org/guidelines
> List Help .................. http://beta.ixda.org/help
> Unsubscribe ................ http://beta.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> Questions .................. list at ixda.org
> Home ....................... http://beta.ixda.org
>

14 Sep 2007 - 8:55am
Phillip Hunter
2006

> She learns about the students-their motives for taking the course, level
> of interest in the subject, level of prior knowledge, what they
> intend to do with new knowledge, what makes the subject easy or
> difficult, enjoyable or onerous.

Maybe the Interaction Designer also talks to former students of the class to
find out how the old textbook worked and didn't work for them and what they
wish would have been different.

ph

14 Sep 2007 - 9:00am
White, Jeff
2007

Seems like this is UCD or just familiarizing yourself with the subject
matter before you start thinking about interaction. It's not IxD, IMO.

On 9/14/07, Phillip Hunter <phillip at speechcycle.com> wrote:
>
> > She learns about the students-their motives for taking the course, level
> > of interest in the subject, level of prior knowledge, what they
> > intend to do with new knowledge, what makes the subject easy or
> > difficult, enjoyable or onerous.
>
> Maybe the Interaction Designer also talks to former students of the class
> to
> find out how the old textbook worked and didn't work for them and what
> they
> wish would have been different.
>
> ph
>
>

14 Sep 2007 - 9:21am
Patrick G
2006

I think someone alluded to this earlier in the thread, but what about
designing/structuring the interactions between the people in the
class through some "inert interface" such as a book or game or
brainstorming exercise? Would you consider this interaction design?

Putting aside the example of the book, would you consider (non-
digital) game design a form of interaction design? If I create pieces
with different values and rules about how the players can utilize
them towards accomplishing some end, is that not a form of
interaction design? Sure, the game itself is not responding to my
moves, the other player is. But the game provides the the physical
context and the logical interface for our interaction.

On Sep 14, 2007, at 9:47 AM, Jeff White wrote:

> "So you wouldn't mind, then, if I pull it back where it started? ;)"
>
> Absolutely not. :-)
>
> I'm missing what exactly in the second example is IxD. Can you
> clarify? It's
> clearly UCD. My basic understanding of IxD is that a human does
> something to
> something (they interact) and that something has a response. I
> still don't
> see how a book responds to a person w/o getting super theoretical.
>
> On 9/14/07, Jack Moffett <jmoffett at inmedius.com> wrote:
>>
>>
>> On Sep 13, 2007, at 10:25 PM, Jeff White wrote:
>>
>>> Cool. Sorry for killing the conversation. I would like for more to
>>> come out
>>> of it
>>
>> So you wouldn't mind, then, if I pull it back where it started? ;)
>>
>>
>> I do believe there are distinctions between Information Design,
>> Graphic Design, Interaction Design, and so forth. I'm not claiming
>> that the event my students hosted was an Interaction Design project.
>> It was Service Design, although there were IxD contributions.
>>
>> I'd like to go back to the textbook. In the interest of trying to
>> focus the discussion somewhat, I'll make a proposal, and then you all
>> can shoot it full of holes. (Maybe it will draw fire away from Jeff
>> H. for a few minutes. ;)
>>
>>
>> Textbook as Graphic Design Project
>> A Graphic Designer is hired by a publisher to design the new version
>> of a textbook. The designer begins by researching existing textbooks.
>> He collects examples of particularly effective information
>> visualizations and makes notes about how information is organized. At
>> the same time, he is receiving content from his client and learning
>> about the book's subject. He works with his client to determine the
>> chapters, sections, etc. He may even attend a class to observe how
>> the book is to be used or talk to students who are using the previous
>> version. Once he has the content and the structure, he begins
>> organizing the content into spreads, sketching layouts and diagrams,
>> and selecting photography and illustrations. He decides on locations
>> and sizes for page numbering, section headings, footnotes, etc. He
>> creates a mock-up of the book and works with the customer to revise
>> it. He may show it to students or teachers to gauge acceptance.
>> Finally, the book is approved by the client and goes to press.
>>
>>
>> Textbook as Interaction Design Project
>> An Interaction Designer is hired by a publisher to design the new
>> version of a textbook. She begins by researching the course. She
>> learns about the students—their motives for taking the course, level
>> of interest in the subject, level of prior knowledge, what they
>> intend to do with new knowledge, what makes the subject easy or
>> difficult, enjoyable or onerous. She learns about the teachers—their
>> motives for teaching the course, their goals for the students, their
>> prior experience teaching, things they find helpful, and problems
>> they have.
>>
>> The designer may then generate personas representing teachers and
>> students (users). She will work with the client and users to explore
>> new ideas for how the course could be improved, including use of the
>> textbook, and possibly other materials as well. She will likely write
>> scenarios showing how the new course concepts compare to the current
>> course. In conjunction with the scenarios, she may create flowcharts
>> illustrating paths through the topics covered by the course. She will
>> create a sample chapter or two based on the new design with a
>> corresponding class plan and supporting materials (a prototype). Then
>> she sets up a user test in which actual teachers and students run
>> through the sample lesson. Based on the observations and feedback
>> generated, she proceeds to design the rest of the book and other
>> course materials. After Course 2.0 is deployed, she gathers feedback
>> to validate the design.
>>
>>
>> In summary, I would say that the first case, while possibly including
>> some degree of UCD, is not Interaction Design. The second case is
>> Interaction Design, but not simply because it is user centered.
>>
>> Alright, have at it!
>>
>> Jack
>>
>> Jack L. Moffett
>> Interaction Designer
>> inmedius
>> 412.459.0310 x219
>> http://www.inmedius.com
>>
>>
>> When I am working on a problem,
>> I never think about beauty.
>> I think only of how to solve the problem.
>>
>> But when I have finished,
>> if the solution is not beautiful,
>> I know it is wrong.
>>
>> - R. Buckminster Fuller
>>
>>
>> ________________________________________________________________
>> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
>> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
>> List Guidelines ............ http://beta.ixda.org/guidelines
>> List Help .................. http://beta.ixda.org/help
>> Unsubscribe ................ http://beta.ixda.org/unsubscribe
>> Questions .................. list at ixda.org
>> Home ....................... http://beta.ixda.org
>>
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> List Guidelines ............ http://beta.ixda.org/guidelines
> List Help .................. http://beta.ixda.org/help
> Unsubscribe ................ http://beta.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> Questions .................. list at ixda.org
> Home ....................... http://beta.ixda.org

14 Sep 2007 - 9:27am
White, Jeff
2007

I don't know. I don't think so. This would be like two people discussing an
article they read in the new york times or something. They are interacting
with each other based on an inert interface (if I'm following your example
correctly) which in this case is the NYT article. Does that mean the
journalist is an interaction designer - because s/he put something out into
the world that could possibly lead to humans interacting with each other?

Again, I'm not sure. I may not be understanding your example.

On 9/14/07, Patrick Grizzard <gamutant at earthlink.net> wrote:
>
> I think someone alluded to this earlier in the thread, but what about
> designing/structuring the interactions between the people in the
> class through some "inert interface" such as a book or game or
> brainstorming exercise? Would you consider this interaction design?
>
> Putting aside the example of the book, would you consider (non-
> digital) game design a form of interaction design? If I create pieces
> with different values and rules about how the players can utilize
> them towards accomplishing some end, is that not a form of
> interaction design? Sure, the game itself is not responding to my
> moves, the other player is. But the game provides the the physical
> context and the logical interface for our interaction.
>
>

14 Sep 2007 - 9:30am
Phillip Hunter
2006

Hmm. I see what you're saying, but I don't think it's too super-theoretical
to be fairly sure that readers are forming expectations of what's to come in
a book as they progress through it. So meeting or varying from those
expectations, reacting to the meeting or the variance.is that the stuff of
interaction?

Also, while the reader can't *change* the overall content, but they can skip
sections, read the last page, etc. and change their experience. Which is
better than what's offered at many web sites. ;)

ph

_____

From: Jeff White [mailto:jwhite31 at gmail.com]
Sent: Friday, September 14, 2007 10:01 AM
To: phillip at speechcycle.com
Cc: Jack Moffett; IXDA list
Subject: Re: [IxDA Discuss] IxD definition WAS Interaction Design for
ESLTextbooks?

Seems like this is UCD or just familiarizing yourself with the subject
matter before you start thinking about interaction. It's not IxD, IMO.

On 9/14/07, Phillip Hunter <phillip at speechcycle.com> wrote:

> She learns about the students-their motives for taking the course, level
> of interest in the subject, level of prior knowledge, what they
> intend to do with new knowledge, what makes the subject easy or
> difficult, enjoyable or onerous.

Maybe the Interaction Designer also talks to former students of the class to
find out how the old textbook worked and didn't work for them and what they
wish would have been different.

ph

14 Sep 2007 - 9:33am
Jack L. Moffett
2005

On Sep 14, 2007, at 9:47 AM, Jeff White wrote:

> My basic understanding of IxD is that a human does something to
> something (they interact) and that something has a response. I
> still don't see how a book responds to a person w/o getting super
> theoretical.

So then a door that simply pushes open is non-interactive, but one
that utilizes a push-bar, knob, or electronic release is interactive?
Therefore, if I design the first door, I'm not doing IxD, but if I
design the second door, I am?

I would say that the act of using a process to determine which type
of door-opening mechanism is needed is IxD, regardless of which type
of door I end up with.

Jack

Jack L. Moffett
Interaction Designer
inmedius
412.459.0310 x219
http://www.inmedius.com

When I am working on a problem,
I never think about beauty.
I think only of how to solve the problem.

But when I have finished,
if the solution is not beautiful,
I know it is wrong.

- R. Buckminster Fuller

14 Sep 2007 - 9:51am
Phillip Hunter
2006

To finish my thought, perhaps the IxD component is the accommodation of
those possible behaviors, rather than simply acknowledging yet not
addressing them in any way.

ph

_____

From: Phillip Hunter [mailto:phillip at speechcycle.com]
Sent: Friday, September 14, 2007 10:30 AM
To: 'Jeff White'
Cc: 'IXDA list'
Subject: RE: [IxDA Discuss] IxD definition WAS Interaction Design for
ESLTextbooks?

Hmm. I see what you're saying, but I don't think it's too super-theoretical
to be fairly sure that readers are forming expectations of what's to come in
a book as they progress through it. So meeting or varying from those
expectations, reacting to the meeting or the variance.is that the stuff of
interaction?

Also, while the reader can't *change* the overall content, but they can skip
sections, read the last page, etc. and change their experience. Which is
better than what's offered at many web sites. ;)

ph

_____

From: Jeff White [mailto:jwhite31 at gmail.com]
Sent: Friday, September 14, 2007 10:01 AM
To: phillip at speechcycle.com
Cc: Jack Moffett; IXDA list
Subject: Re: [IxDA Discuss] IxD definition WAS Interaction Design for
ESLTextbooks?

Seems like this is UCD or just familiarizing yourself with the subject
matter before you start thinking about interaction. It's not IxD, IMO.

14 Sep 2007 - 10:12am
White, Jeff
2007

"So then a door that simply pushes open is non-interactive, but one
that utilizes a push-bar, knob, or electronic release is interactive?"

Any type of door could be said to be interactive, whether it has a mechanism
or not. But you could say anything on the face of the planet is interactive
as well - simply because it exists and has physical properties. I think the
process you're talking about to get the best opening mechanism is certainly
a design process. But would this one be categorized as industrial design?

On 9/14/07, Jack Moffett <jmoffett at inmedius.com> wrote:
>
>
> On Sep 14, 2007, at 9:47 AM, Jeff White wrote:
>
> > My basic understanding of IxD is that a human does something to
> > something (they interact) and that something has a response. I
> > still don't see how a book responds to a person w/o getting super
> > theoretical.
>
> So then a door that simply pushes open is non-interactive, but one
> that utilizes a push-bar, knob, or electronic release is interactive?
> Therefore, if I design the first door, I'm not doing IxD, but if I
> design the second door, I am?
>
> I would say that the act of using a process to determine which type
> of door-opening mechanism is needed is IxD, regardless of which type
> of door I end up with.
>
> Jack
>
>
> Jack L. Moffett
> Interaction Designer
> inmedius
> 412.459.0310 x219
> http://www.inmedius.com
>
>
> When I am working on a problem,
> I never think about beauty.
> I think only of how to solve the problem.
>
> But when I have finished,
> if the solution is not beautiful,
> I know it is wrong.
>
> - R. Buckminster Fuller
>
>
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> List Guidelines ............ http://beta.ixda.org/guidelines
> List Help .................. http://beta.ixda.org/help
> Unsubscribe ................ http://beta.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> Questions .................. list at ixda.org
> Home ....................... http://beta.ixda.org
>

14 Sep 2007 - 10:16am
jamin
2007

"If IxD is really about designing any type of process, thing,
product, etc that involves any level or type of human interaction, I
want to know, because I have lots of reading to do, and lots of
waiting for subject matters to respond to me."

Ixd is about designing for any interaction. Better start reading, or
perhaps, practicing.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Posted from the improved ixda.org
http://beta.ixda.org/discuss?post=20369

14 Sep 2007 - 10:31am
White, Jeff
2007

My opinion is that is way too broad to be meaningful. This more or less
means that interaction designers should take over the world and render every
other type of profession in existence meaningless. Everything is an
interaction. It's inherent in life and the nature of human beings. I think
we need more focus.

On Fri, 14 Sep 2007 08:16:23, Jamin Hegeman <jamin at cmu.edu> wrote:
>
> "If IxD is really about designing any type of process, thing,
> product, etc that involves any level or type of human interaction, I
> want to know, because I have lots of reading to do, and lots of
> waiting for subject matters to respond to me."
>
> Ixd is about designing for any interaction. Better start reading, or
> perhaps, practicing.
>
>
> . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
> Posted from the improved ixda.org
> http://beta.ixda.org/discuss?post=20369
>
>
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> List Guidelines ............ http://beta.ixda.org/guidelines
> List Help .................. http://beta.ixda.org/help
> Unsubscribe ................ http://beta.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> Questions .................. list at ixda.org
> Home ....................... http://beta.ixda.org
>

14 Sep 2007 - 10:57am
Jack L. Moffett
2005

On Sep 14, 2007, at 11:12 AM, Jeff White wrote:

> I think the process you're talking about to get the best opening
> mechanism is certainly a design process. But would this one be
> categorized as industrial design?

I think that the process used to design a specific door opening
mechanism to be the best door opening mechanism it can be is
industrial design. But, selecting which type of mechanism (push,
pull, turn, wave key fob, etc.) based on the activities surrounding
the use of that door (warehouse access by people carrying boxes vs.
photography darkrooom vs. a secure area) is an Interaction Design
activity. Could an industrial designer do it? Yes—they're smart
people. Could an architect do it? Yes. But, when an interaction
designer does it using IxD tools and processes, it is Interaction
Design.

Jack

Jack L. Moffett
Interaction Designer
inmedius
412.459.0310 x219
http://www.inmedius.com

In our society,
the scarce factor is not information,
it is time to attend to information.

- Herb Simon

14 Sep 2007 - 11:44am
jamin
2007

Saying IxD is designing for any interaction is not too broad. It may
feel too broad if that is not your mindset, or if you feel that, as
an interaction designer, you don't actually have the skills to apply
interaction design to any interaction.

Going back to photography, saying that photography encompasses taking
a photo of anything is not too broad to be meaningful. So why is
saying interaction design encompasses any interaction too broad to be
meaningful?

And I'm not sure how bringing an interaction design perspective to a
problem means interaction designers can run the world. Everything is
an interaction, which enables great potential for interaction design.
But this doesn't mean we will take over or even lead. Good
interaction design requires collaborating in multidisciplinary teams
because interaction design isn't everything. But everything can
benefit from good interaction design.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Posted from the improved ixda.org
http://beta.ixda.org/discuss?post=20369

14 Sep 2007 - 12:13pm
White, Jeff
2007

"Going back to photography, saying that photography encompasses taking
a photo of anything is not too broad to be meaningful. So why is
saying interaction design encompasses any interaction too broad to be
meaningful?"

Because photography is a very focused and well defined
practice/medium/whatever you want to call it. Everyone can agree that
photography is the act of taking a picture of something. That is way
different than saying that every possible human interaction is the province
of interaction designers.

"And I'm not sure how bringing an interaction design perspective to a
problem means interaction designers can run the world."

You said that IxD is the design of any interaction. That's a pretty big
statement, don't ya think? Considering the world is full of people and stuff
that they can interact with, including each other, and also that every
profession on the face of the earth somehow involves people interacting with
each other and "things", I made an assumption that you think you can do any
profession more effectively than whoever is doing it now, or help them make
it better. The latter is more acceptable to me for sure, but still both seem
very arrogant to me. And I could have made a bad assumption as well.

I think to accomplish what you're talking about, IxD'ers need to have
expertise in every single subject matter imanginable.

"What did you major in in school?"

"Everything. I make everything better."

"Really? That's great. Know any accountants? My company is hiring."

I know I'm taking this to a great extreme here, but I'm just trying to
illustrate my concern: we can't be everything. It's really disrespectful to
other humans (the ones we are trying to understand and design for) to try
and think we can.

On Fri, 14 Sep 2007 09:44:28, Jamin Hegeman <jamin at cmu.edu> wrote:
>
> Saying IxD is designing for any interaction is not too broad. It may
> feel too broad if that is not your mindset, or if you feel that, as
> an interaction designer, you don't actually have the skills to apply
> interaction design to any interaction.
>
> Going back to photography, saying that photography encompasses taking
> a photo of anything is not too broad to be meaningful. So why is
> saying interaction design encompasses any interaction too broad to be
> meaningful?
>
> And I'm not sure how bringing an interaction design perspective to a
> problem means interaction designers can run the world. Everything is
> an interaction, which enables great potential for interaction design.
> But this doesn't mean we will take over or even lead. Good
> interaction design requires collaborating in multidisciplinary teams
> because interaction design isn't everything. But everything can
> benefit from good interaction design.
>
>
> . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
> Posted from the improved ixda.org
> http://beta.ixda.org/discuss?post=20369
>
>
> ________________________________________________________________
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14 Sep 2007 - 12:43pm
Christian Crumlish
2006

On 9/14/07, Jeff White <jwhite31 at gmail.com> wrote:
> "So then a door that simply pushes open is non-interactive, but one
> that utilizes a push-bar, knob, or electronic release is interactive?"

Wait, I thought we already established on this list that "interaction"
is an awesome powerful expansive word but that "interactive" is a
nasty bit of marketing jargon?

-xian, elocution designer-

14 Sep 2007 - 12:45pm
Andrei Herasimchuk
2004

On Sep 14, 2007, at 9:44 AM, Jamin Hegeman wrote:

> Going back to photography, saying that photography encompasses taking
> a photo of anything is not too broad to be meaningful. So why is
> saying interaction design encompasses any interaction too broad to be
> meaningful?

Here's the rub: A photographer can show you their work by showing you
their pictures. And in showing you their pictures, sure, they can
take a photo of anything, but at the end of the day, they still have
a tangible result: the photo itself.

So the challenge for IxDers is to answer the question: What do you
show someone when they ask what it is that you do?

--
Andrei Herasimchuk

Principal, Involution Studios
innovating the digital world

e. andrei at involutionstudios.com
c. +1 408 306 6422

14 Sep 2007 - 1:34pm
Patrick G
2006

As you say, what the journalist creates "could possibly lead to
humans interacting with each other," but that is not its primary,
functional purpose, is it? It's primary purpose is to inform,
entertain, persuade a reader through the written word. Games are
designed solely with the intent of human interaction; without human
interaction, all you have are the physical materials, whatever they
may be - cards, dice, board, pieces in the case of traditional games,
but you could easily substitute class materials to create "learning
games" .

More importantly, though, the structure, format and content of the
news article have very little (if any) impact on the nature of the
interaction between two people discussing it. A journalist is simply
providing information. It may be written from a certain critical
perspective or foster a specific ideological stance, but it doesn't
create the rules or define the space within which a discussion about
it can take place, which is exactly what a game does.

I guess that what I am getting at is that, for me, structuring and
defining interactions between people is as much a part of what I do
as defining how those people interact with a digital artifact. In
many, if not most, cases, the artifact is there to enable the human
interaction. Much of what we do as IxDers is understanding tasks,
processes, activities, etc. in order to design applications that
enable these things to be accomplished faster, with less effort, more
enjoyably, etc. When I map out a "real-life" process, I inevitably
encounter inefficiencies, break-downs, and boredom, not all of which
can be remedied simply through the design of a new application. Or,
more accurately, in order to design the application optimally (that
is, in accordance with user goals), off-line processes need to be
changed.

I realize that this is not a purist definition of IxD, which is
something that I'm not interested in contesting. But, a definition
that acknowledges where and how IxD extends into and overlaps with
other disciplines could be useful for a variety of reasons, not least
of which being that it is from these liminal zones where new ideas
emerge.

On Sep 14, 2007, at 10:27 AM, Jeff White wrote:

> I don't know. I don't think so. This would be like two people
> discussing an article they read in the new york times or something.
> They are interacting with each other based on an inert interface
> (if I'm following your example correctly) which in this case is the
> NYT article. Does that mean the journalist is an interaction
> designer - because s/he put something out into the world that could
> possibly lead to humans interacting with each other?
>
> Again, I'm not sure. I may not be understanding your example.
>
> On 9/14/07, Patrick Grizzard <gamutant at earthlink.net > wrote:
> I think someone alluded to this earlier in the thread, but what about
> designing/structuring the interactions between the people in the
> class through some "inert interface" such as a book or game or
> brainstorming exercise? Would you consider this interaction design?
>
> Putting aside the example of the book, would you consider (non-
> digital) game design a form of interaction design? If I create pieces
> with different values and rules about how the players can utilize
> them towards accomplishing some end, is that not a form of
> interaction design? Sure, the game itself is not responding to my
> moves, the other player is. But the game provides the the physical
> context and the logical interface for our interaction.
>
>

14 Sep 2007 - 1:38pm
Mark Schraad
2006

To take that even a step further... nearly every method that we think is specific to interaction design, can be applied to nearly any other design discipline and make it better. Many interactions designers are those pushing the envelope in design - and specifically the design thinking crowd. Likewise, because of that overlap, most every design thinker in acedemia is paying close attention to, if not participating in interaction design. While these silos, names and divisions of design maybe helpful in some conversations thaey are in fact quite artificial. Design is design. Yes, I know, this is counter productive...

Mark

On Friday, September 14, 2007, at 01:55PM, "Jamin Hegeman" <jamin at cmu.edu> wrote:

>But I stand by my statement that any interaction can benefit from
>good interaction design. If that's a big statement, so be it. I
>don't think it is, because that's what I do: apply interaction
>design process and principles to every design project I encounter,
>whether it be a single control, an interface, or a healthcare system.
>

14 Sep 2007 - 1:53pm
Joseph Selbie
2007

>To take that even a step further... nearly every method that we think is
specific to interaction design, can be applied to nearly any other design
discipline and make it better.

To keep things in perspective, most of IX's methods and practices come from,
or are adapted from, other disciplines. I would be hard pressed to identify
the truly unique practices in IX. The practices we have are adapted to focus
on a rapidly growing need, but you will find very, very similar practices
put to use by professionals in a lot of disciplines considered to be
*design* of one kind or another...

Joseph Selbie
Founder, CEO Tristream
http://www.tristream.com

Many interactions designers are those pushing the envelope in design - and
specifically the design thinking crowd. Likewise, because of that overlap,
most every design thinker in acedemia is paying close attention to, if not
participating in interaction design. While these silos, names and divisions
of design maybe helpful in some conversations thaey are in fact quite
artificial. Design is design. Yes, I know, this is counter productive...

Mark

On Friday, September 14, 2007, at 01:55PM, "Jamin Hegeman" <jamin at cmu.edu>
wrote:

>But I stand by my statement that any interaction can benefit from
>good interaction design. If that's a big statement, so be it. I
>don't think it is, because that's what I do: apply interaction
>design process and principles to every design project I encounter,
>whether it be a single control, an interface, or a healthcare system.
>

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14 Sep 2007 - 2:36pm
Andrei Herasimchuk
2004

On Sep 14, 2007, at 11:38 AM, Mark Schraad wrote:

> Many interactions designers are those pushing the envelope in
> design - and specifically the design thinking crowd.

I have to disagree. All fields of design are pushing the envelope
these days. And I mean all of them. Are you watching what is
happening in automobile design? Fashion? Architecture? Industrial
design? Publishing? Filmmaking?

I'd watch out and not get a bubble mentality here. I know people like
to think what they are working on is the coolest thing ever (and it
is very cool stuff), but that's pretty much true across the board
with all designers in all disciplines.

--
Andrei Herasimchuk

Principal, Involution Studios
innovating the digital world

e. andrei at involutionstudios.com
c. +1 408 306 6422

14 Sep 2007 - 9:37pm
Eric Scheid
2006

On 14/9/07 5:24 AM, "Mark Schraad" <mschraad at mac.com> wrote:

> a less subjective (or what the feild of philosophy might call a 'god's eye'
> view), and which is ultimately more accurate

why would a less subjective definition of a concept that only exists within
our minds be more accurate?

e.

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