What are you trying to do?

I was more fascinated with the studio environments of these thought leaders than the actual narrative, but I quickly had to snap out of drooling over this eye-candy in order to pay attention to the message of this almost 20 min video.

Given the rate at which our content is changing every day, minute, or second, digital products are now considered living systems. The advice given in this movie is to think more about patterns of desired outcomes based on the behaviours you’re trying to achieve.

Simply moving a user through one flow or experience is not going to address the shear scope of how we will be interacting with our future environments. Especially with the emergence of what’s referred to as the Internet of Things where everything around us could talk to the internet.

The best quote in my humble opinion was Blaise Agüera y Arcas’ comment to the effect of ‘It’s about What Are You Trying to Do?’ Hell’s ya and exactly! The video goes on to say that we’re probably in a phase right now where we don’t quite have the human/machine balance quite figured out yet.

Our fragmented attention split between people and devices is probably more disrupting than enabling our conversations. We may start to embrace a more natural and supportive interface that runs in the background and doesn’t nag so much or demand so much of our direct attention. As we grow tired of this inefficiency, we may start to appreciate things like the use of voice, removal of buttons or even more natural human gesturing like haptics which will give us tactile feedback upon touching a screen in the form of a subtle vibration on the finger tip.

Additional commentary that sings to our future is that it’s more about the content and less about the chrome. The ‘chrome’ being what now seems to be old-fashioned visual metaphors translated onto the screen. The chrome is just the signal for the metaphor being used, the content is what’s real.

A truly innovative design would evolve directly from the native digital world instead of importing the idea of turning a glossy magazine page via a time based animation to make it look like your turning a real page. The idea of translating traditional print and other analog metaphors into design is considered derivative and actually missing the point of our digital medium.