It is clear that
going to have a
impact on our world.
Designers have a
responsibility to enable
to bring the power
what we need, we can’t make
sense of it.
So what are human-centered
data? How should they be presented, stored, organized, visualized, so that they are relevant
for us, and not (just) for a computer? What does that mean for
such varied fields as car design,
mobile device software, or digital signage?
We will need new metaphors
that embody very human concepts such as preciousness,
moods, attraction, surprise, and
forgetting, and apply them to
data sets, data algorithms and
to the people, and to
provide them with
the tools to better
govern their lives and
and local/physical communities of sharing? To what extent
can digital/mobile communication tools help people in both
online and physical communities manage their sharing and
exchanging practices? What
would the rules, rituals, and
habits of this future world be?
I was recently involved in
net), a collaborative foresight
experiment that asked these
questions, and many more.
People like Bruce Sterling,
Regine Debatty, Nicolas Nova,
and Josh Klein did the first
groundwork on understanding
the future of money, sociality, and alternative currencies.
Later, many more thinkers and
professionals joined in on creating shared future scenarios.
At the time of this writing, the
results of the project were not
yet known, but should be available for you to view and reflect
upon by the time you read this.
the communities and
societies they live in.
The Data Avalanche and
People are not computers. We
forget. We cannot search our
mental databases. Our thinking
and memory are not disconnected from acting and sensing. The two are engrained and
Yet computers are increasingly driving our day-to-day
lives and pushing their paradigms into our human experience. We are rapidly moving
to a world where everything is
always stored—in many different locations—and everything
is always accessible.
Life would be easy for us if
we just thought like computers.
But we don’t. We feel bombard-
ed with data, but we can’t find
The Human Experience of
The world we currently live in
is far from sustainable across
all the core contexts of human
experience: economy, society,
environment, and spirituality.
Nathan Shedroff argues that
user-centered design or experience design in itself leads
to more sustainable product
development, and he certainly
has a point:
“More meaningful products
as well as ones that better meet
our needs don’t require us to
buy more and more things (in
order to fill those needs and
desires). Fewer, more meaningful, effective, and sustainable
products will be more fulfilling and more sustainable than
more and more less fulfilling,
effective, and meaningful
ones. In addition, devices that
adequately meet our needs,
especially technological ones,
often have the effect of not
only dematerializing competing
products but also products in
other categories (like the iPods
and iPhones are doing).” [ 2]