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Putting People First

Daily insights on user experience, experience design and people-centred innovation
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February 2006
14 February 2006

Developing Leaders for Innovation

Iit_prototyping
Developing Leaders for Innovation is the name of a new minisite of the Chicago-based Institute of Design, with many examples of their work.

The site is particularly interesting because it describes some user experience design tools and processes, such as user observation, early prototyping, behavioural prototyping and interdisciplinary collaboration.

Also of note is IIT’s upcoming Design Strategy conference (featured, as all events, in our shared experience design calendar), and the website with the proceedings of the 2005 Design Strategy conference.

13 February 2006

Torino 2008 World Design Capital

Torino_2008
The Olympics have barely started, but Torino is already looking ahead to its next venture: in 2008 it will become the first World Design Capital.

At a prestigious and well-attended press conference today, an illustrous panel, consisting of Sergio Chiamparino, mayor of the City of Torino, Peter Zec, president of ICSID, Andrea Pininfarina, ceo of Pininfarina and vice-president of the Confindustria industry confederation, and Giorgetto Giugiaro, president of Italdesign Giugiaro, presented the project to the international press.

During the XXIV General Assembly of ICSID (International Council of Societies of Industrial Design) in Copenhagen on September 30, 2005, the City of Torino was nominated “World Design Capital” (WDC) for the year 2008. The actual agreement between the City and ICSID was signed today.

This nomination and the signing today came at the end of a long process that began in May 2003, when Torino participated in the competition held by ICSID and Icograda and became a candidate to host the joint secretariat (a competition which was finally won by Montreal, Canada).

Right from this early phase, Torino proved it was a city of projects, research and experimentation. The city’s historical roots are closely tied to industry and over the past ten years a project has been grafted onto those roots to redesign the city’s identity, receiving further impetus from the Olympics.

Torino’s charm and competence made an impression, and this interest and discovery convinced ICSID to assign the first World Design Capital award to Torino.

The World Design Capital Award

Starting in 2008, the new World Design Capital project will pinpoint cities in recognition of their excellence in the field of design and promote them to an international level as areas that focus on design as a driving force for economic, social and cultural development.

From the point of view of the cities that are selected, this nomination can help increase their visibility as a creative city, attract economic and professional resources, and strengthen their process of economic development. In short, it can put them on the world map of design and position them within an international network.

The Pilot Project

The nomination fo the cities will take place through a selection process conducted by a worldwide Bid. Nevertheless, the first mandate for the year 2008 — a true Pilot Project — was directly assigned to Torino because it has the right characteristics for becoming a partner of ICSID through this award.

The experiences of the pilot project city will help draw up the rules and guidelines for the promotion and management of the event, which future winners will have to apply for.

The choice of Torino

Many factors convinced ICSID that Torino is able to carry out the first WDC mandate. First of all, the city’s tradition in the fields of design and engineering. Then, the many research centres, style centres, and model and prototype laboratories.

Another factor was the ongoing mission of internationalisation, which has lead to the city being awarded the XX Olympic Winter Games in 2006 (IOC), the World Book Capital in 2006 (UNESCO), the Winter Universiade in 2007, and the headquarters of the World Congress of Architects in 2008 (UIA).

The event

For the entire duration of 2008, Torino will be a national and international showcase of design. Besides proposing the local excellences of Piemonte, Torino 2008 will also be a vehicle for illustrating Italian design, involving other cities and companies.

The city will also be a pole of reference for international design, encouraging exchanges and relations with other world capitals.

The organisational secretariat and the headquarters of the Steering Committee are located at the Torino Internazionale association.

12 February 2006

Interaction design in a glocal context

Hongkong_diagram
The Hong Kong School of Design MDes programme positions product and interaction design education between cultural identity, local relevance and global competitiveness.

“The aim of the Master of Design programme is to equip students with knowledge in design at a level that facilitates the integration of design, technology and business. This knowledge is obtained through a flexible curriculum focused on the development and management of products and services in the business and cultural contexts of an evolving knowledge-based economy.”

12 February 2006

Interview with Marc Rettig on designing for interaction

Rettig
Dan Saffer, an interaction designer at Adaptive Path and the author of the upcoming book “Designing for interaction” just published an interview with Marc Rettig.

Marc Rettig is a designer, educator, and researcher, as well as founder and principal of Fit Associates. He has taught at Carnegie Mellon’s Graduate School of Design (where he held the 2003 Nierenberg Distinguished Chair of Design) and the Institute of Design, IIT, in Chicago. Marc served as chief experience officer of the user experience consultancy HannaHodge, and was a director of user experience at Cambridge Technology Partners.

Read interview

12 February 2006

Aging at home: a user-centred approach to caring for the elderly [The New York Times]

Care_elderly
Beacon Hill Village is an innovative nonprofit organisation created by and for local residents determined to grow old in familiar surroundings, and to make that possible for others.

Community-based models for aging in place designed by the people who use them are the wave of the future, experts say, an alternative to nursing homes and assisted living centers run by large service providers.

“I don’t want a so-called expert determining how I should be treated or what should be available to me,” said 72-year-old Susan McWhinney-Morse, one of the founders. “The thing I most cherish here is that it’s we, the older people, who are creating our own universe.”

Read full story

12 February 2006

Interactive user experiences with mobiles

Locamoda
LocaModa is a company that creates proprietary interactive networks that extend the power of the web to the steet helping consumers to opt-in and connect to brands. The have launched two services: StreetSurfer and StreetMessenger.

StreetSurfer is a mobile-enabled interactive marketing application for retail, real estate and travel and tourism industries. StreetSurfer enables users with mobile phones to ‘remote-control’ Internet connected screens in retail and real estate storefront windows, hotel lobbies or city streets.

StreetMessenger is a mobile-enabled social and advocacy platform for in-location messaging, social networking, blogging and entertainment applications. It’s ideal for partners and/or sponsors ranging from entertainment (such as bars, clubs and restaurants) to cause/issue advocacy related non-profit groups seeking community aggregation.

(via CustomerWorld)

10 February 2006

Future scenarios for the $100 laptop

Laptopfront
In a thoughtful article in the New York Times, Hal R. Varian, professor of business, economics and information management at the University of California, Berkeley, explores the potential business models that could be built around cheap laptops in developing countries.

Starting from historic examples — the sewing machine, the cash register, the telegraph and the telephone — Varian sees opportunities for financial transactions, the management of contracts and legal titles, education, and the struggle against illiteracy.

Read full story

9 February 2006

Zollverein School of Management and Design

Zollverein
International professional development and training for professionals working in management and design.

The Zollverein School of Management and Design is the only research and educational institute of its kind in Europe. The school was founded in 2004 and its first international MBA degree course in Business Design got underway in February 2005. The course’s interdisciplinary programme seeks to teach students both management and design skills in an innovative way. All courses offered by the Zollverein School focus on the practical rather than on the theoretical.

The school has its own blog (which just featured Putting People First). It is run by Ralf Beuker of the Vol. 2: Design Management blog.

9 February 2006

Design for emerging technologies

Emerging_technology_main
In a long story on the Design Council website, Peter Davies, chief executive of Pera International, reflects on the implications of emerging technologies and the pace of technological change for design and design professionals.

“By tracking and understanding today’s emerging technologies we can predict what new design freedoms they will give us in the future. Informed anticipation is essential to leading-edge design.”

“Designers need to be early on the scene to ensure that people-centred solutions are delivered rather than technological nightmares.”

“The design community does not have to be merely reactive to emerging technologies. It can itself choose to proactively influence the research community to address topics that will have maximum beneficial impact on product and service features in the future.”

Read full story

9 February 2006

Creativity and innovation for public authorities

Public_interest
The UK Design Council provides some interesting case studies of what creativity and innovation can do to public procurement and regional and local authorities.

Borough of Tower Hamlets – Idea Store
Libraries in the London borough of Tower Hamlets were unused and unloved until the Idea Store trebled usage with seven-day opening, a cafe and more.

Lambeth Borough Council – Council Tax Bill
A redesign of its Council Tax bill has triggered a huge increase in payments for the London borough of Lambeth.

National Savings and Investments
When National Savings and Investments re-lauched themselves using design consultancy Lloyd Northover, the results of the website re-design far exceeded expectations.

NHS Clean Your Hands campaign
The UK National Health Service Patient Safety Agency is trying to reduce the so-called Healthcare Associated Infection (HCAI), which leads to 5000 deaths a year and costs the NHS £1billion.

Read full story

9 February 2006

Fins launch European network of Living Labs

Livinglabs
The Finnish EU Presidency will launch a European Network of Living Labs – Co-creation of innovation in public, private and civic partnership on November 21, 2006. This is the first step towards a New European Innovation System (EIS).

A European Network of Living Labs is a collaboration of Public Private Partnership (PPP) where firms, public authorities and people work together with creating, prototyping, validating and testing new services, businesses, markets and technologies in real-life contexts, such as cities, city regions, rural areas and collaborative virtual networks between public and private players.

The real-life and everyday life contexts will both stimulate and challenge research and development as public authorities and citizens will not only participate in, but also contribute to the whole innovation process.

There are already many existing real-life test beds in Europe that will serve as building blocks for a future Living Labs concept, e.g. Arabianranta, Forum Virium and Sparknet, Finland, Testbed Botnia, Sweden, Mobile City Bremen, Germany and Livingtomorrow, The Netherlands and Belgium.

The EU Commission (Information Society and Media Directorate, New Collaborative Working Environments unit) has allocated 40 Million Euros from the 5th call of the 6th Framework Programme for piloting a European Network of Living Labs.

Read full story

>>> UPDATED 3 April 2006

Sascha Haselmayer, Director of the Barcelona consultancy Interface commented:

“It may be worth adding to this article, that already today several Living Labs are in operation across Europe under the Living Labs Europe initiative. Mobile solutions for students, citizens, visitors and businesses are implemented across Living Labs Europe, with tangible results for European citizens and businesses.”

“Living Labs Europe focus on the end-user perspective and cities across Europe collaborate with highly dynamic groups of small, medium-sized, as well as multinational companies to pioneer new mobile solutions.”

“One example is the mStudent project, where a collaboration between Living Labs Catalunya and Living Labs Sweden was launched during the 3GSM World Congress in Barcelona.”

8 February 2006

Designing user experiences at Microsoft

Jenny_lam
Microsoft’s chief blogger Robert Scoble interviews his colleague Jenny Lam, creative lead of the MSX (Microsoft User Experience) design team, to talk about the user experience work her team is doing for Windows Vista.

At CES 2006 Jenny Lam also talked with Chris Pirillo about the Aero desktop experience, and the design of the latest fonts and interface in Windows Vista.

Video interview Scoble – Lam
Audio interview Pirillo – Lam

(via Ben Skelton)

7 February 2006

Design for Democracy: increasing participation in the civic experience

Designdemocracy
Design for Democracy increases civic participation by making the experience clearer, more understandable, easier to accomplish and more trustworthy.

Design and social research professionals collaborate to enable compelling, efficient and trust-building experiences between government and the governed.

On a nonprofit basis, Design for Democracy offers consultation services to federal, state and local government agencies by developing models and prototypes to address large and small civic communication or industrial design problems. We consult with groups who work with government agencies in order to institutionalize design standards.

Design for Democracy helps government agencies find either national or local professional designers and researchers within its membership, who, on a for-hire basis, will test and implement designs.

Design for Democracy is a strategic program of AIGA, the professional association for design, and UPA, the Usability Professionals’ Association.

Visit Design for Democracy website
Read story on UPA website

7 February 2006

An exponentially expanding future from exponentially shrinking technology

Kurzweil
Ray Kurzweill, author of The Singularity is Near: When Humans Transcend Biology and featured before in this blog (link and link), was recently a guest speaker at the Council on Foreign Relations, where he discussed how our lives might look like in forty years, given the ever accelerating rate of information technology.

The talk, entitled “An Exponentially Expanding Future From Exponentially Shrinking Technology”, was chaired by Richard N. Foster of Foster Health Partners, llc.

Read interview

Download audio

(via John Morales of the Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital at Stanford)

7 February 2006

IDEO on design processes in healthcare management

Rotman_healthcare
The Winter 2006 issue of the magazine of the Rotman School of Management is devoted to healthcare and features a four page article by IDEO’s Peter Coughlin and Ilya Prokopoff.

The article, entitled “Managing Change, By Design”, discusses three design tools for creating ‘futures’ based on the one thing that seems to remain relatively stable, even in times of great change: human behaviour.

They argue that coupling design-process experts with business-content experts creates a capacity to envision and realise futures that are both desirable for stakeholders and viable for organisations.

Last year’s winter issue of the same magazine was devoted to experiences, memorable events that engage customers in an inherently personal way.

Download Winter 2006 issue on healthcare (pdf, 7.1 mb, 116 pages)
Download Winter 2005 issue on experience (pdf, 10.4 mb, 100 pages)

(via John Morales of the Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital at Stanford)

6 February 2006

User research and co-creation in healthcare systems

Red_health
Chronic disease and conditions related to an unhealthy lifestyle have reached epidemic proportions and are rising still. This presents a momentous challenge for our current healthcare system.

Looking at the problem from a design perspective shows that there are many gaps in the way that current approaches relate to people’s daily lives and motivations. Designing from the individual’s point of view could provide the key to solutions that work.

Working with partners in Bolton and Kent counties, the UK Design Council explored ways to create new healthcare systems and prototyped innovative services for self-managing chronic conditions and maintaining healthier lifestyles.

A brand new website details the user research and co-design that went into developing prototypes of co-created healthcare systems in Kent – to encourage active ageing, and in Bolton to develop systems to help people live better with type 2 diabetes.

Together, they point towards a radical new model of healthcare organisation: Open Health.

6 February 2006

Calendar of experience design events worldwide

Eventful
I would like to remind the PPF readers that they can find a calendar dedicated to experience design conferences and events on the Eventful website, which currently contains thirty upcoming activities of interest to the community.

It is a shared calendar so everyone can add events, and also contains group listings for events with particular relevance to practitioners in Asia, Europe and North-America.

The calendar and the three groups come with their own rss feeds.

6 February 2006

Design Council publishes thirty “Design Cards”

About_design_postcards
The Design Council knowledge cards summarise a unique resource of online in-depth information compiled by expert authors on design topics and issues that matter.

The 30 cards in a pack provide an overview of our knowledge experts resources introducing each topic by explaining what it is, why it is important and how you might apply the subject. This information is expanded further in the website ‘about design‘ section.

Topics cover all design fields, including experience design, interaction design, service design and user-centred design, and related topics such as design research, innovation and sustainability.

4 February 2006

Design and usability for emerging telephony

Emerging_behaviours
During the recent O’Reilly Emerging Telephony Conference (January 24-26, San Francisco), Roberto Tagliabue, digital experience creative director of Nike TechLab , B.J. Fogg, a researcher at Stanford University and author of the book “Persuasive Technology: Using Computers to Change What We Think and Do” and Brian McConnell, founder of Open Communication System (aka RadioHandi), held a workshop on design and usability for emerging telephony, which is described as follows:

“Designing a product for the future is not a simple question of making two-way technology go faster, last longer, weigh less, or do more. It’s about understanding how devices tap into people’s lives, about how, when, and why we use technology in the ways we do. Design is a tool that helps to envisage our desires as consumers, our expectations as users, and our impulses as human beings. These deep emotional enablers are the ones that tell us how to bring together chips, screens, and microprocessors.”

“Designing the next telephone is no different than designing a table and its chairs. Both help two friends enjoy their conversation while having a good coffee (in two different part of the world).”

“Design, usability and emotional enablers”
by Roberto Tagliabue, digital experience creative director, Nike TechLab
Download presentation (pdf, 1.3 mb)

“Multimodal application design – or how to create a telephone user experience that doesn’t suck”
by Brian McConnell, founder, Open Communication System (aka RadioHandi)
Download presentation (ppt, 5.2 mb)

3 February 2006

Swisscom presents ICT usage vision for 2015

Swisscom_vision2015
Swisscom’s Vision 2015 highlights the most probable future with respect to developments and usage of ICT.

Taking into consideration both technological and societal trends, Swisscom developed a number of storylines covering different aspects of the every-day life in order to understand how these trends could affect the evolution of the ICT world in different domains (e.g. work, mobility, health care) and which new ICT applications could be commercialised and adopted by 2015.

The vision consists of six stories: the digital life, the perfect worker, the global tourist, the safest world, the virtual doctor and education on demand, as well as a trends report (pdf, 891 kb), a 100 years innovation trajectories overview (pdf, 352 kb) and a mini-revolutions map for 2015 (pdf, 477 kb).