Design 16th - Apr - 2019

Interaction Design and its significance

by terralogic_design

In today’s rapid-paced world, almost everyone relies on smart devices and applications for digital accomplishments day-in-day-out. Since the designs are crafted only for potential users to accommodate and facilitate, Business now keeps a keen eye on the interface/design of their digital products.

As a design agency/a digital designer, it’s very important to make the design decisions at the earliest possible stage of the design approach. This is vital in order to make the product/application the best interacting experience.

     Owing to the situation, let’s talk about the pivotal role of interaction design which is one of the many fields that make up the larger practice of User Experience or UX design.

     The term “Interaction Design” (IxD) defines the structure and behavior of interactive systems. It is the practice of designing interactive products, environments, systems, and services.

A good Interaction Designs builds a meaningful relationship between people and the products and their services that they use, from computers to mobile devices to appliances and beyond.” defines it as, the design of the interaction between people and products. It’s all about shaping the experience of using a product for a particular user.

The term interaction design was created by Bill Moggridge and Bill Verplank for software design in the mid-1980s. It emerged from user interface design, industrial design, and software development.

Gillian Crampton Smith established the first program in interaction design at the Royal College of Art in London in 1989, and she said;

“Interaction design is not just about making us more efficient at work. We use our devices in all aspects of everyday life, including play and entertainment. It’s not just about the visual appearance of an interface. Interaction design is about designing for the behavior of people and the products they use.”

Bob Baxley in 2002 in a 12-part series that defined interaction design for web applications said the following-

Human-Machine communication – Effective communications and translation of the conversation between technology and the user.

Action-Reaction – How the designers should understand and anticipate interactions that unfold over time in the order of user interactions.

State – Ensure user-understanding of the current state of an application to predict how differently the users might interact with the system. Also, to be well informed about the kind of operations that are possible at any given time.

Workflow – Providing a complete solution to fulfill ease of access and seamlessness to multitask at the same time as browsing, selecting, and purchasing an item, etc.

Malfunction – Ensuring that both the user and the system can easily recover from errors or mistakes that are bound to happen at any specific point of time.


Five dimensions of interaction design according to Wikipedia

The concept of dimensions of interaction design were introduced in Moggridge book Designing Interactions. Crampton Smith wrote that interaction design draws on four existing design languages, 1D, 2D, 3D, 4D. Silver later proposed a fifth dimension, behavior.

Words – This dimension defines interactions words are the element that users interact with.
Visual representations – Visual representations are the elements of an interface that the user perceives; these may include but are not limited to “typography, diagrams, icons, and other graphics”.
Physical objects or space – This dimension defines the objects or space “with which or within which users interact”.
Time – The time during which the user interacts with the interface. An example of this               includes “content that changes over time such as sound, video or animation”.
Behavior – Behavior defines and how user respond to the interface.


Interaction designers:

These are the designers in charge of the websites/apps, electronic smart devices, appliances, etc.

Creating engaging and interactive interfaces with perceptive behaviors and actions of cool animations/moving elements providing engaging user interaction.

They collaborate closely throughout the design process- right from creating user flows and wire-frames to building user interface mock-ups and prototypes with other designers, researchers, content strategists, product managers, software engineers, developers, and others.

At each stage, they are to anticipate and predict what the users need, how they are expected to interact with products and services. In such a case, where each interaction is quick and pleasurable, ensures the final product’s appropriateness.

Interaction designers are employed to tackle complex tasks and transform them into intuitive, accessible and easy-to-use designs for billions of people around the world-from the first-time user to the sophisticated expert.

So in an oversimplified and user-friendly nutshell-

    UX Design is how a user feels about the apps.

    UI Design is what, where and how elements work on the apps.

    Information Architecture is how an app is organized.

    Interaction Design is how the user and app act and react to each other.

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