“Innovation has nothing to do with how many R&D dollars you have. When Apple came up with the Mac, IBM was spending at least 100 times more on R&D. It's not about money. It's about the people you have, how you're led, and how much you get it.” - Steve Jobs

Pliability as an experiential quality: Exploring the aesthetics of interaction design

Finally! a GREAT!!!! example of a quality of interaction design aesthetics explained. In this case by Jonas Lwgren of Malm University’s School of Arts and Communication.

Jonas wrote the article a while back, but I finally got to it this past week with my new long commute. This is one of the first theoretical articles about the aesthetics of interaction design I have read in a long time that I feel I can put to practical use almost immediately.

The article requires a good read by itself, but Jonas is using the term pliability in a very interesting way. I do have to remove myself from the word a bit and just go with it. I kept saying if this was called “Foo” would it still make sense, and the answer is definitely YES!

But the gist of it is that “pliability” in my best interpretation means the direction level of connection between a user’s physical action (type, click, drag, scroll, etc.) and the systems virtual reaction to that action. That tightness of this event can correlate to the positive affect with the system as a whole.

How does this translate to direct practicality?

For me as someone who is teaching design of Rich Internet Applications (RIAs) I see directly how this quality interaction can directly help you determine what types of RIA design patterns you might want to employ, or even how/why these patterns improve the design of an application at all.

I’m going to delve deeper into this question soon, but right now, I’ll let people just catch up to me and read this really great article.

Thank you Jonas. It is great fodder for even more thinking on the qualities of interaction design aesthetics.

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