Definition | Interaction Design

Interaction Design

Interaction design is all about creating a coherent bond between man and machine to assist the daily lives of everyday people. It is about shaping digital tools for people’s use. The main focus when designing for interactive media are the questions as defined by Bill Verplank in his video. (from the lecture) These questions are ‘how do you do? how do you feel? how do you know?’. These are the basic platforms on which interaction has been designing. By asking these questions to either the target audience or yourself as the designer, it allows for the best possible design work for interaction. Interaction can come in many different forms such as reading a novel or a book, engaging in conversation, through the use of a mobile phone including apps, watching a movie etc. However, all these have varying degrees of interaction based on their interactivity and engagement with the audience.

An example of an interactive website is Mercedes Benz The Forgotten Road Trip –!/roadtrip. As you scroll down this website it includes pictures, videos, text, voice overs and music to give the story of The Forgotten Road Trip. The videos start automatically and will not let you progress down, until it has finished. You cannot pause the video or skip ahead, requiring the audience to watch and make a judgement on the video and the way it has been presented. There are also more interactive elements where the user is required to make the character complete an action by clicking and sliding along the line provided. This image is the home page which from here you scroll down to reveal the story. This image also moves.


Another example of an interactive website is Jonathan Yuen’s which can be viewed His website displays his work as a designer. It is extremely interactive by only responding by mouse overs to certain spots on the page. These dots have been coloured red with a + to signify that there is more content once it has been scrolled over. The only way to progress is to continue to scroll over the red dots. Included is a lot of animation done in Flash which move in different ways whenever something is scrolled over. This allows the audience to feel engaged.


The last example of a type of designed interaction is the mobile phone. Phones, especially the iPhone and related products have become the forefront of interactive design, relying solely on the user and the interaction with it. Only content that is wanted by the user is on there, including apps, music and more. Consumers are able to use their phone in any way they wish which is most likely a reason for their popularity.




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