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Keynote Thursday: Wellbeing, Experience and Interaction - Designing meaningful moments

About the Talk

September 24, 2015 2:00 PM

Madrid, Spain

Madrid, Spain

Designers have always been busy reinventing the world. While beloved and ridiculed visionaries of last century's modernism, such as Buckminster Fuller, focused on better houses, better transportation, better food, efficiency and practicality, we now focus on the social and emotional life of people – their psychological wellbeing. Face it: We yearn to make people happy through design. But what does that actually mean? Is a new Porsches the way to make someone happy through design? Of course, for some it is. I rather believe that the mundane should be rejuvenated with more happiness. Coffee making, TV watching, a family dinner, the daily commute – any everyday activity can be understood as a possibility to feel closer to your loved ones, to feel competent, autonomous, stimulated, popular, secure, and healthy. Things can be put in place to subtly shape activities and experiences – at the heart of all this is interaction. Thus, the careful consideration of the experiential consequences of any design, how design choices impact activities, reshape experiences, create or destroy meaning and happiness, must become a standard. Experience is not an extra. It can't just be turned off. It is the major outcome of any interaction with the world. At the same time the chance for more happiness lurks everywhere in our everyday lives. To realize this potential, however, we need to reconsider our understanding of what interaction and experience design actually is and what it is for.

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