Interaction Design: is it too late to start?

31 May 2011 - 8:38am
5 years ago
1 reply
1511 reads

Hi All 

I am a content and a media professional. Over the last ten years I have worked in varying roles across print, television, film and digital. I have been an editor for a magazine, (also conceptualised the brand position), Associate director for a tv show, feature films and a documentary, art director for ad and feature films, content, strategy and broadcast head for online brand communication. On the digital platform I have created online brand experiences for FMCG and films. This involved creating interactive campaigns on various digital platforms and exploring new technology for the same. Over the last couple of years I have gotten more interested at creating 360 degree interactive communication across platforms. More importantly I am looking to now for a leap in the digital content and interactive space thereby putting my skills to better potential. I think this can be by creating interactive experiences from offline to online, purely online as well. yet it is not advertising that I look forward too. I want to get into a space where I can conceptualise and execute interactive experiences and content for products. 

My skills are conceptualising on all media, research, brand positioning, creating relevant content and strategy, team management, producer, director, writer. I am thinking of learning interactive design as a way to better put my skills at work. 

I look for advice from all you guys out there to shed light and insight about learning interactive design. here are a few questions: 

1) To do what has been stated above do I need to learn interaction design? How will that leverage my skills in the job market? 

2) Does interaction design add value to creating content?

3) What do you think would be the best possible way of coalscing my skills to do the above? Or what else do I need to learn that will give me an edge? 

4) To work for companies like IDEO, COOPER, Frog Design in the field of interactive content will interaction design be a good edge along with my present skills? 

I request you all to please share your valuable and frank insights and help me find a direction in this sea. 

Thankyou all 



2 Jun 2011 - 6:59pm

Its never too late. This is simple.

1) To question 1, I would say yes. But I take a holistic approach to IXD and define it beyond the bounds that have traditionally be done. Some traditional approaches discount the graphics, typography, technologies, production, pipelines, etc. and focus narrowly on user-experience and physcology. Personally, I see that it all contributes to some degree and the more knowledgable you are in related areas, the more compelling and intelligent your final user-experience will be. After all, think about the depth of cognitive response and physcology within the few items I mentioned (graphics, typography, technologies...). Especially since you have listed "Content Strategy" and "digital content and interactive space". 

2) Yes - How will the user interact with or receive this content? And the processes and experience?

3) Follow sites like this that address contemporary issues in IXD, attend trade shows, workshops and lectures at local universities and IXD chapters. Consider furthering your education (it's never too late with this as well :-), personal research (Web, books, etc. Norman, Cooper, Buxton, etc.)

4) Nothing can substitute for great work in the portfolio and experience in the area you are applying for. Schooling and degrees can help, but talent rises to the top, regardless of degrees.

I have followed IXDA closely for the last several years and I have witnessed the growth but have also noticed conflicting philosophies and ideas surround many of the topics. Some approaches are old school and narrow, some are insanely broad (i.e. my own), but making complex user experiences inviting and easy to use is an art, that in my opinion span many areas and disciplines, and extend beyond wireframe architecture - regardless of whether its a product, system, environment, game, Web app, print experience or all of the digital options that we have today.


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