As our everyday social and cultural experiences are increasingly mediated by electronic products—from "intelligent" toasters to iPods—it is the design of these products that shapes our experience of the "electrosphere" in which we live. Designers of electronic products, writes Anthony Dunne in Hertzian Tales, must begin to think more broadly about the aesthetic role of electronic products in everyday life.
Over almost three decades, the field of human-computer interaction (HCI) has produced a rich and varied literature. Although the focus of attention today is naturally on new work, older contributions that played a role in shaping the trajectory and character of the field have much to tell us. The contributors to HCI Remixed were asked to reflect on a single work at least ten years old that influenced their approach to HCI.
In Technology as Experience, John McCarthy and Peter Wright argue that any account of what is often called the user experience must take into consideration the emotional, intellectual, and sensual aspects of our interactions with technology. We don't just use technology, they point out; we live with it. They offer a new approach to understanding human-computer interaction through examining the felt experience of technology.
The computer's metaphorical desktop, with its onscreen windows and hierarchy of folders, is the only digital work environment most users and designers have ever known. Yet empirical studies show that the traditional desktop design does not provide sufficient support for today's real-life tasks involving collaboration, multitasking, multiple roles, and diverse technologies.
Interfaces that talk and listen are populating computers, cars, call centers, and even home appliances and toys, but voice interfaces invariably frustrate rather than help. In Wired for Speech, Clifford Nass and Scott Brave reveal how interactive voice technologies can readily and effectively tap into the automatic responses all speech—whether from human or machine—evokes. Wired for Speech demonstrates that people are "voice-activated": we respond to voice technologies as we respond to actual people and behave as we would in any social situation.
The authors of Thoughtful Interaction Design go beyond the usual technical concerns of usability and usefulness to consider interaction design from a design perspective. The shaping of digital artifacts is a design process that influences the form and functions of workplaces, schools, communication, and culture; the successful interaction designer must use both ethical and aesthetic judgment to create designs that are appropriate to a given environment.
The evolution of the concept of mind in cognitive science over the past 25 years creates new ways to think about the interaction of people and computers. New ideas about embodiment, metaphor as a fundamental cognitive process, and conceptual integration--a blending of older concepts that gives rise to new, emergent properties--have become increasingly important in software engineering (SE) and human-computer interaction (HCI).
Digital technology has changed the way we interact with everything from the games we play to the tools we use at work. Designers of digital technology products no longer regard their job as designing a physical object—beautiful or utilitarian—but as designing our interactions with it. In Designing Interactions, award-winning designer Bill Moggridge introduces us to forty influential designers who have shaped our interaction with technology.
The Japanese term for mobile phone, keitai (roughly translated as "something you carry with you"), evokes not technical capability or freedom of movement but intimacy and portability, defining a personal accessory that allows constant social connection. Japan's enthusiastic engagement with mobile technology has become -- along with anime, manga, and sushi -- part of its trendsetting popular culture.
Internet and computer users are often represented onscreen as active and empowered--as in AOL's striding yellow figure and the interface hand that appears to manipulate software and hypertext links. In The Body and the Screen Michele White suggests that users can more properly be understood as spectators rendered and regulated by technologies and representations, for whom looking and the mediation of the screen are significant aspects of engagement.