Sites and products are rarely designed nor behave in a linear fashion anymore. Save for the popular long page format. There's no way to capture the dynamic nature of use cases with a static site map. Why create a typical tree of pages connected in a deceivingly orderly fashion, that when all the real connectivity between screens as added, would be an unreadable game of Pick-Up Sticks? What if site maps evolved into a new framework to help both builders and users? To inform practicality and boost usability?
Designers have long welcomed anonymity when their artifacts are released into the wild. A typical designer may flippantly make design decisions under the assumption that the reach and authority of the artifact is fleeting. This is not true. Jon Kolko and Weick et al. argue that a designer is in the position of authority to dictate action and influence far further than superficially thought. As designers acknowledge that they control the raw materials for persuasion, they must realize that design is deliberate and has consequences.
Less is more is a fallacy. A decreased visbile quantity of interactions directly in front of you can be perceptually flawed. As technology provides the means to cram more context into a smaller canvas, we are left with more instead of less.
More information waiting patiently behind linked text on the web. More functions beckoned by gestural actions. More hues to illustrate subtleties of visual communication.
Technology has allowed us to combine these layers of information into rich interactions. The real innovation is the user’s ability to modify the available layers into a dashboard of interest, yielding a simplified end result. Layered complexity is the new simplicity.
I started attending Austin Center for Design this week. I will learn Interaction Design and Social Entrepreneurship from quite the cadre of professionals in the field, with this quarter consisting of Jon Kolko on theory, Lauren Serota on research methods and Justin Petro on rapid prototyping. Part of the admission process consisted of my statement of purpose. Check it out: