Changing Tides in Interaction Design

Going into 2019 we invited several hundred Interaction Designers (and related disciplines) to give us input on the state of Design in San Francisco and the Bay Area. We heard their feedback, personal stories, broad and concrete asks, and an excitement to get involved in shaping the community. Three key areas of concern and opportunity emerged: Craft, Career, and Community. Some of the insights on Craft included the following:

Technology innovations are moving at a breakneck speed, and IxDs are challenged to continuously stay ahead of the curve. Many designers wonder how to design for AI. They want opportunities to learn new technologies hands-on, to understand the deeper workings of these new capabilities that they're designing for (and with), and move from a reactive stance into the driver's seat.

IxDs observe that the design process is moving away from a classical diamonds-based approach to a plunge into rapid experimentation. This brings new challenges and opportunities, which are as yet uncharted. Large-scale behavioral data has found its way into the IxD toolbox if experimentation is taken seriously, and Ix Researchers are merging this with qualitative insights to paint the rich picture that is needed to determine if a design experiment was a 'fast fail' (ie a learning opportunity), or had a desirable outcome.

Finally, Designers are conscious and conscientious about the impact their products have on people's lives, especially where Design Ethics are concerned. They want to do their part and also shoulder the responsibility for creating products that enrich and improve people's work and personal experiences with technology.

For more insights into our findings and also on participating organizations (from Google and Microsoft to the CCA and San Francisco start-ups), please see our full medium post here:

Changing Tides in Interaction Design

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