The good people at Chi Netherlands just posted video of my talk “Playing Well With Others: Interaction Design and Social Design for Augmented Reality” at the Web and Beyond 2010 here in Amsterdam in June. It’s couched as a collection of design principles for the oncoming category of social augmented interactions made possible by the new medium of augmented reality. But this talk is also a call to action for all makers of experiences for the emerging engagement space of everyware to focus on the human and the humane perspectives as we explore the new interactions made possible.
The outline of the talk is roughly:
Overview of augmented reality
Social interaction perspective on current AR experiences
Definition of ‘social augmented experiences’
Common interaction design patterns for AR
Social ‘anti-patterns’ limiting design of augmented experiences
Design principles for social augmented experiences
(The audio quality is quite good, and the cameraman captured most of the slides nicely — so this is a recording worth watching.)
This year’s TWAB featured several talks on augmented reality, ubiquitous computing and related topics; you’ll find recordings of these on the Chi Nederland Vimeo channel: http://vimeo.com/chinederland
Many thanks to the organizers and volunteers for putting on such a well-run event!
Thanks to all who came to the Muziekgebouw on a lovely early summer day to talk about the emerging engagement space of social augmented experiences for the third edition of The Web And Beyond conference in Amsterdam.
For reference, here’s the session description from the official program:
Augmented reality blends the real world and the Internet in real time, making many new kinds of proximity, context, and location based experiences possible for individuals and groups. Despite these many possibilities, we know from history that the long term value and impact of augmented reality for most people will depend on how well these experiences integrate with ordinary social settings, and support everyday interactions. Yet the interaction patterns and behavior we see in current AR experiences seem almost ‘anti-social’ by design. This is an important gap that design must close in order to create successful AR offerings. In other words, much like children going to school for the first time, AR must to learn to ‘play well with others’ to be valuable and successful. This presentation reviews the interaction design patterns common to augmented reality, suggests tools to help understand and improve the ’social maturity’ of AR products and applications, and shares design principles for creating genuinely social augmented experiences that integrate well with human social settings and interactions.
I’ve posted my slides for the Where 2.0 panel “The Next Wave of AR: Social Augmented Experiences” organized by Tish Shute. After a review of the current state of augmented reality experiences in terms of the social interactions supported (using the metric of ‘social maturity’), it shares 9 principles for creating social AR experiences that people will enjoy and value.
Special points to those who spot the embedded April Fool’s joke…
Radio Johnny (brought to you by the good people of Johnny Holland magazine) just published an interview Jeff Parks recorded with me shortly before the New Year, discussing augmented reality, why it’s of interest for Experience Design, and some of the areas of likely development we’ll see in AR in the near future.
Hubris alert: I admit to having grandiose schemes to influence the evolution of an emerging medium, by consistently hectoring the world on the importance of tools for simple content creation…
2009 was a big year for augmented reality, and there are many predictions that 2010 will be even bigger; with accomplishments coming in the form of new technologies, devices, business models, and ways of having fun. But even as we go about building this emerging medium, we’re still relying largely on old-media style centralized understandings of the production models, form, and content of the augmented world. What happens when we grasp the new social and interaction possibilities of augmented reality?
In the spirit of co-created social augmented experiences, we’re asking for audience contributions: in the form of simple scenarios that describe the future of social AR. What will it feel like? Who will you interact with? How will these experiences change everyday life?
Panel Summary (full description on the Where 2.0 site)
This panel will discuss shared augmented realities, considering some of the essential possibilities and challenges inherent in this new class of social augmented experiences. The format is presentation of a small set of scenarios (defined in advance, with audience input) describing likely future forms of shared augmented realities at differing scales of social engagement for discussion by a panel of leading practitioners in technology, experience design, networked urbanism, interface design, game design, and augmented reality.
Current augmented reality experiences put who you are, where you are, what you are doing, and what is around you at center stage. But we can already look beyond the first stage of interactions assuming a single user seeing simple arrows and tags indicating POIs, and begin to explore shared (multiuser/multisource) augmented realities.
These social augmented experiences will allow not only mashups, & multisource data flows, but dynamic overlays (not limited to 3d), created by distributed groups of users, linked to location/place/time, and syndicated to people who wish to engage with the experience by viewing and co-creating elements for their own goals and benefit.
Share your scenarios for the Next Wave of AR in the comments or elsewhere (tag nextwaveAR socialAR), and come to Where 2.0 and see the panel!
UX Matters just published Anonymous Cowards, Avatars, and the Zeitgeist: Personal Identity in Flux. This is the latest installment of my column on ubiquitous computing and user experience, and it takes on the question of how personal identity is changing is a result of the rise of digital tools, services, and measurements for identity. Identity is a fundamental aspect of experience, so it’s critical that we understand what is happening to this universal element. ‘Anonymous Cowards’ is the first of two parts, focused on understanding how digital identities work, and are different from what we know. Here’s an excerpt:
Driven by dramatic shifts in technology, economics, and media, nothing less than a transformation in the makeup and behavior of our personal identity is at hand—what it is, where it comes from, how it works, who controls it, how people and organizations use and value it. As a direct result of this transformation, the experience people have of personal identity—both their own and the identities of others—is changing rapidly. As designers of the blended digital, social, and material experiences of everyware, we must understand the changing nature of personal identity. And now that humanity itself is within the design horizon, it is especially important for design to understand the shifting experience of digital identity.
The second part will look at the implications of these changes for our experience of identity. As I put together my predictions for what identity will be like in 10 years, I welcome input — what do you think?
AR is more of a perspective and class of experiences than an instance of new technology, so I wanted to approach the subject from the specific perspective of user experience and interaction design. Reactions from the augmented reality community are positive so far; Claire Boonstra of Layar, and no less than the inimitable Tish Shute of UgoTrade, have all been kind enough to recommend it. Thanks to them and to everyone who’s tweeted and posted this one.
As we explore the role augmented reality will play in our gigantic experiment with everyware, we should keep in mind that the map is not the territory. But there is no denying an effective map will surely help point the way as you try to find your way around a strange new country.
What happens when *everything* is designable? When the boundaries between humanity, technology, and the larger environment disappear? Designing Post-humanity: Everyware In the Far Future, the latest installment of my column on user experience and ubiquitous computing in UXmatters, takes a look at these questions. Post-humans, ubicomp, and science fiction may seem like strange territory for user experience professionals, but by considering these kinds of futures today, we make many important decisions about who we will [all!] be tomorrow.
Two quick updates on things happening other places.
First, the latest installment of Everyware: Designing the Ubiquitous Experience (my column for UXmatters) was published back in March. It explores the world of Vernor Vinge’s story Synthetic Serendipity from the experience design perspective. Vinge is justly reknowned as an SF author, but what makes Synthetic Serendipity worth reading closely is the dense collection of ideas it shares: augmented reality, wearable computing systems, a network-based co-creation economy open to all participation by people of all ages, the games vs. reality inversion, generational differences in adaptation to technological change, etc.
Mostly, I like Synthetic Serendipity as an entry point into the ubiquitous computing space because it presents a picture of the future from the viewpoint of an ordinary kid, who has ordinary concerns; go to school, play video games, stay out of trouble with friends.
In the companion piece in draft now, I look much further ahead, exploring scenarios that consider what happens when the boundaries separating humans from the environment blur and dissolve, and humanity itself becomes an object of design.
I’ve been focused on understanding future directions in the landscape of digital experiences recently (which nicely parallels some of the work I’ve been doing on design and futures in general), so I’m sharing a summary of the analysis that’s come out of this research.
This presentation shares an overview of all the major waves of change affecting digital experiences, some of the especially forward-looking insights around shifts in our identities, and the implications for those creating digital experiences.
The 8 waves discussed here (are there more? let me know!)