Presentation on IxD in 21st Century Work

My talk at the MWUX Conference, Pittsburgh, October 2015 was an opportunity to present a proposal with rationale for the “literacies” that are required by IxD practitioners:

  • Systems Literacy
  • Collaboration Literacy
  • Internet of Things Literacy
  • Coding Literacy
  • Frameworks for Interaction & Conversation Literacy

Also mentioned were the importance of understanding social equality and how value is created in the 21st-century economy. I touched on ethics and the responsibility of designers, a topic which catalyzed the most interest in both the Q&A and follow-up in 1-on-1 conversations after the talk.

Interaction Design Practice and 21st Century Work

The world of startups and the speed of technology change creates new challenges for practitioners of interaction design. The shift of value creation “from atoms to bits” in our networked economy seems to make it more difficult to predict success; so many startups fail. Developing genuinely new ideas requires peer-to-peer collaboration across disparate domains of expertise. Teams morph quickly across the phases of development as well as the phases of maturity of an enterprise, as it evolves from startup to market entrant to major player. The rapid evolution of technology pressures designers as well as makers to constantly update their tactical skills. As a result, interaction designers must gain these pragmatic skills, which are the focus of this talk:

  • principles for assembling diverse expertise into a team that can be immediately productive
  • explicitly designing the collaboration process for efficiency and creativity
  • establishing a shared model of the intentions of the product and the system that will deliver it
  • sharply defining the benefits and value created to ensure a successful business outcome.