Knowing this, what would it mean to design for the in-between? For shapeshifting selves, for emergent alliances, for ambiguity, for contradiction? What would a social network look like that isn’t extractive, that would not appropriate but rather accommodate individuals and the not-quite-one, not-quite-two nature of actual interaction and identity? What’s the opposite of a trigger? How do you design for patience, for subtlety? Is it possible to build a system that’s as alive as we are?
in a time when everything we do, say, and are is at risk of being distilled into a single essence, what would an anti-essentialist design look like?
We can ask ourselves five questions as we design these interfaces:
How does the interface help us retrieve information?
Is it easy to decode the information that was retrieved?
Does the interface allow for easy and clear modification of information?
Does the interface assist in, and clearly declare when it is going to distribute information?
How will this interface redefine what it means to be human?
These days, I am more curious to see a tool that makes it easier to work asynchronously, a tool that lets us interface at our own leisure, rather than a tool that makes synchronous digital interaction more immersive.
Before we can take a meaningful step forward, we might have to take a step back and embrace that we simply can't virtualize our IRL (in real life) experiences and expect them to work out just as well.
As we considered in Design as Dance above, iteration is necessary so that we can figure out what works and what doesn't. By knowing the history of technology, information, design, and interfaces we can work toward a more purposeful and intentional future.