13 February 2009

Dubberly Design articles

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Dubberly Design Office
Hugh Dubberly is a forum editor at Interactions Magazine, which means that he writes, co-writes or edits articles for the magazine. The website of his company, Dubberly Design Office, contains all of these excellently written and very thoughtful articles.

Here is a short and personal selection:

What is interaction? Are there different types?
Written for Interactions magazine by Hugh Dubberly, Usman Haque and Paul Pangaro – 1 Jan 2009
When we discuss computer-human interaction and design for interaction, do we agree on the meaning of the term “interaction”? Has the subject been fully explored? Is the definition settled?

An evolving map of design practice and design research
Written for Interactions magazine by Liz Sanders. Edited by Hugh Dubberly – 1 November 2008
Design research is in a state of flux. The design research landscape has been the focus of a tremendous amount of exploration and growth over the past five to 10 years. It is currently a jumble of approaches that, while competing as well as complementary, nonetheless share a common goal: to drive, inspire, and inform the design development process.

Design in the age of biology: shifting from a mechanical-object ethos to an organic-systems ethos
Written for Interactions magazine by Hugh Dubberly – 1 September 2008
In the early twentieth century, our understanding of physics changed rapidly; now, our understanding of biology is undergoing a similar rapid change. […] Recent breakthroughs in biology are largely about information—understanding how organisms encode it, store, reproduce, transmit, and express it—mapping genomes, editing DNA sequences, mapping cell-signaling pathways. […[ Already we can see the process beginning. Where once we described computers as mechanical minds, increasingly we describe computer networks with more biological terms—bugs, viruses, attacks, communities, social capital, trust, identity.

The experience cycle
Written for Interactions magazine by Hugh Dubberly and Shelley Evenson – 1 May 2008
In this article, we contrast the “sales cycle” and related models with the “experience cycle” model. The sales cycle model is a traditional tool in business. The sales cycle frames the producer-customer relationship from the producer’s point of view and aims to funnel potential customers to a transaction. The experience cycle is a new tool, synthesizing and giving form to a broader, more holistic approach being taken by growing numbers of designers, brand experts, and marketers. The experience cycle frames the producer-customer relationship from the customer’s point of view and aims to move well beyond a single transaction to establish a relationship between producer and customer and foster an on-going conversation.

The analysis-synthesis bridge model
Written for Interactions magazine by Hugh Dubberly, Shelley Evenson, and Rick Robinson – 1 March 2008
The simplest way to describe the design process is to divide it into two phases: analysis and synthesis. Or preparation and inspiration. But those descriptions miss a crucial element—the connection between the two, the active move from one state to another, the transition or transformation that is at the heart of designing. How do designers move from analysis to synthesis? From problem to solution? From current situation to preferred future? From research to concept? From constituent needs to proposed response? From context to form?

Cybernetics and service-craft: language for behavior-focused design
Written for Kybernetes by Hugh Dubberly and Paul Pangaro – 19 January 2007
Argues [that] design practice has moved from hand-craft to service-craft and that service-craft exemplifies a growing focus on systems within design practice. Proposes cybernetics as a source for practical frameworks that enable understanding of dynamic systems, including specific interactions, larger systems of service, and the activity of design itself. Shows [that] development of first- and second-generation design methods parallels development of first- and second-generation cybernetics, particularly in placing design within the political realm and viewing definition of systems as constructed. Proposes cybernetics as a component of a broad design education.

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Why are microwave ovens all so difficult to use?
The first ‘science oven’, launched in 1967, was simple to use but then digital interfaces came along and made things worse. The real problem, according to Charles Arthur, is that microwave ovens live too long. …

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