Invisible design propogates the myth that technology will ‘disappear’ or ‘just get out of the way’ rather than addressing the qualities of interface technologies that can make them difficult or delightful.
Intentionally hiding the phenomena and materiality of interfaces, smoothing over the natural edges, seams and transitions that constitute all technical systems, entails a loss of understanding and agency for both designers and users of computing. Lack of understanding leads to uncertainty and folk-theories that hinder our ability to use technical systems, and clouds the critique of technological developments.
As systems increasingly record our personal activity and data, invisibility is exactly the wrong model.
Twitter could have been a new communications protocol. But now it’s a portal, like the rest.
Reminds me of the very last thing Alex Payne wrote about Twitter in 2010. So disappointing.
[T]o the Millennial generation, East Germany probably looks like a near-utopia. (You have a 90% chance of your phone conversations not being bugged, and the state will pay for your education, housing, and healthcare! What’s not to like?)
With Apple’s recent announcement of CarPlay I’ve taken a bit of an interest in user interfaces for cars. Two useful resources I’ve come across: Geoff Teehan recently collected state-of-the-art in-car dashboards and media centers and Min Seung Song shares an incredible collection of car cockpits.
I was shooting heroin and reading “The Fountainhead” in the front seat of my privately owned police cruiser when a call came in. I put a quarter in the radio to activate it. It was the chief.
It gets even better from there.
I’ve had that conversation.
I’ve been in that meeting.
Beautiful Apple TV concept renderings by Martin Hajek. I’m particularly fond of the touchscreen remote, even though it seems superfluous in times of ubiquitous smartphones in our pockets.