18 January 2008

Interactions Magazine – first impressions

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Interactions
This morning I received a print copy of Interactions Magazine with the mail.

Wow.

It looks, feels, and reads exactly like a magazine for our profession should be. Why did no one think of this before? It contains a lot of in-depth articles by people I respect or others I am curious about. It is the ideal magazine to take with you and read on the road or on a couch.

Another first impression is that Richard Anderson and Jon Kolko, the editors-in-chief, have gone out of their way to transcend an American perspective on the profession: from the British Elizabeth Churchill, to the Austrian Telecommunications Research Center, and from Stefana Broadbent and Valerie Bauwens of Swisscom Innovations, to South African Gary Marsden and the Beijing-based Gabriel White. I applaud this commitment very much, especially since many USA-based blogs and publications do not take this global view, or assume – wrongly – that the American view equals the global view.

So bravo to the two editors in chief for the direction taken, and bravo to ACM, the publishers, of providing them with this opportunity.

The ACM advertising department has a golden opportunity now: the new “Interactions” approach is out there, but the advertising hasn’t caught up. It’s still very much old style. Some fresh and creative approaches there could make Interactions Magazine a really sustainable publication.

Once I have finished reading the whole magazine, I will definitely write something more in-depth. Meanwhile, Richard and Jon, keep on going in this direction. I hope ACM will take the logical next step: making the articles available online. I am also curious to hear where ACM (an abbreviation which stands for Association for Computing Machinery, a rather awkward name in this day and age) as an organisation wants to go with this, and how it wants to position itself in the new UX landscape. The magazine is silent on that topic. Perhaps ACM’s executive editor or group publisher can be prodded for an article on this in the March-April edition or on the website.

In any case, I strongly suggest the readers of this blog to subscribe to the magazine, if you haven’t already done so. It’s only 50 USD.

PS. In Boston – Next week my partner Michele Visciola and I (Mark Vanderbeeken) will be in Boston for a client meeting. We will arrive on the 23rd and leave on the 27th. If readers of this blog are in Boston then, it would be nice to meet. Please contact us at info at experientia dot com.

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