Table of Contents

VOLUME XVI.4 July + August 2009

    • Interactions

      Richard Anderson, Jon Kolko

      Over the past 10 issues, interactions has, with a great deal of conscious repetition, investigated themes of global influence, sustainability, temporal aesthetics, behavior change, and the design for culture. These issues are at the heart of the human condition—whether exploring, solving, or celebrating the relationships between people and society.…

  • Being green
    • SUSTAINABLY OURSInformation system design as catalyst

      Lisa Nathan, Batya Friedman, Dave Hendry

      As we enter the 21st century, no issue looms larger than how we stand in relation to the natural environment. Concern is growing over the vast amount of finite resources we consume to maintain our lives. Whether one views humanity as master, steward, or just a recalcitrant member of…

    • COVER STORYThe waste manifesto

      Victor Margolin

      Waste is part of life. Human and animal bodies produce natural waste, whereas societies produce synthetic waste. While we cannot control the level of natural waste as its production is an organic part of biological survival, we can drastically reduce the production of synthetic waste. Natural and synthetic waste…

    • FEATURE"At the End of the World, Plant a Tree”

      Adam Greenfield, Tish Shute

      Tish Shute: Legal scholar Eben Moglen has identified three elements of privacy: anonymity, secrecy, and most important, autonomy. How do you see Moglen's three elements in the context of a ubiquitously networked world? Are there ways we could design ubiquitous systems that might support personal autonomy? Adam Greenfield: If…

  • Designing for time
    • ON MODELINGWhat is conversation, and how can we design for it?

      Hugh Dubberly, Paul Pangaro

      Interaction describes a range of processes. A previous "On Modeling" article presented models of interaction based on the internal capacity of the systems doing the interacting [1]. At one extreme, there are simple reactive systems, such as a door that opens when you step on a mat or a…

    • FEATURE"Paper in screen” prototyping

      Davide Bolchini, Diego Pulido, Anthony Faiola

      Prototyping is widely recognized as an effective method for quickly generating cost-effective designs and efficiently gaining user feedback early in the product life cycle [1, 2]. Over the past decade, the method has also been adapted and extensively used for mobile interfaces and devices [3]. Because the design of…

    • FEATURETime, temporality, and interaction

      Sus Lundgren, Theo Hultberg

      Theo had just discovered the musician Robert Fripp, who is famous for recording himself while playing and then playing it back—in effect, playing along with himself [1]. Theo: "What if we do that in interaction design?" Me: "...?" Theo:"What if we use time as a kind of design material?"…

    • TIMELINESUnderstanding visual thinking

      Christine Valenza, Jan Adkins

      Graphic facilitation—facilitating a meeting by taking continual, visual notes on a large scale—demands both attention and suspension. It's the most intense work I know. Listening isn't enough; drawing isn't enough. It's a high-wire act that taxes nerves, and after a session my wits are fried. So when someone walks…

    • FEATUREStories that inspire action

      Gary Hirsch, Brad Robertson

      We hear stories all the time. We tell stories. We are stories. Think about your own name, for example. Why did your parents give you that name? Does your surname have special meaning? Do you have a nickname, and if so, how did you get it? We have asked…

  • The value of culture
    • LIFELONG INTERACTIONSSupporting healthy aging with new technologies

      Brian Jones, Claudia Winegarden, Wendy Rogers

      Information and communication technologies (ICTs) have the potential to enrich many aspects of our lives. The power of wireless computing and networks allow us to connect anytime, anywhere with everything and everyone. New applications and gadgets grow at such a phenomenal rate that technologies aid us in almost all…

    • UNDER DEVELOPMENTOne year of experiences with XO laptops in Uruguay

      Pablo Flores, Juan Hourcade

      Nicholas Negroponte launched the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) Foundation in 2005 with the goal of providing poor children with low-cost laptops designed to enhance the learning process. While much of the press about OLPC has focused on the cost of the laptops, their design incorporates many novel elements…

    • FEATUREThe incidental user

      Ohad Inbar, Noam Tractinsky

      Traditionally, the focus of HCI has been designing for people who actively use applications or interactive products. These individuals, commonly referred to as users, may be bank tellers operating a banking application, pilots setting parameters of an autopilot system, or customers using ATM machines. This viewpoint neglects a vast…

    • FEATUREAround the table

      Pedro Jorge

      "What's it like to do design work in Asia?" It's a question I'm often asked. Hong Kong is a rather small territory with 7 million inhabitants. The city and surrounding area have generally accepted technology as a way of life; in Hong Kong the words "design," "innovation," and "experience"…

  • At the foundation
    • THE WAY I SEE ITDesigning the infrastructure

      Donald Norman

      We live embedded within a supporting network of technology, much of it invisible but essential to our existence. Some of it is mundane, such as the structures that provide water, gas, and electricity and carry away waste as sewage or garbage. Some is more profound, such as the institutions…

    • Ps AND QsThe golden age of newsprint collides with the gilt age of internet news

      Elizabeth Churchill

      Sitting in an economy-class seat on a United Airlines flight, I ducked for the third time as the gentleman next to me struggled to turn the page of his newspaper. While he was perusing the day's events, I was contemplating the unfortunate juxtaposition of two iconic forms—the oversized broadsheet…

    • TRUE TALESShips in the night (part II)

      Steve Portigal

      In Part I ("Design Without Research?" interactions May + June, p. 68) we looked at some different approaches to design that do or do not succeed by omitting research. Here, we examine some of the limitations of doing research without design. A startup approached us just before it began…

  • Interactions Cafe
    • On hopelessness and hope

      Jon Kolko

      In culture, and particularly in the creative professions, a profound dichotomy of hope and hopelessness has permeated discussions of project engagement and project work. At conferences, in client meetings, and over a beer or two, designers frequently and increasingly describe the rich potential to effect massive change and empower…