Mastering The Mobile Magic Of A Mighty Big Medium
Mobile devices are the magical wand in our hands — bringing smarts to dumb and immobile objects alike. How will the magical bridge between the physical and digital worlds unfold? Interaction designer and author Josh Clark shares his big vision.
He may have shared his three words of Russian with Mikhail Gorbachev, strolled around Ronald Reagan Ranch with Nancy and written trivia questions for a primetime game show, but these days entrepreneur Josh Clark is all about mobile. Josh is a designer specializing in multi-device design, strategy, and user experience. He’s author of four books, including the recently released Designing for Touch (A Book Apart, 2015). As he says on his agency’s website “the internet is a mighty big medium. And it’s getting bigger, spreading not only across platforms and screens but into the physical world. As everyday objects become connected, the entire world becomes a digital interface. Anything can be a UI.” That’s a mighty big, rather exciting (and slightly frightening) new digital world.
When he’s not in Brooklyn thinking about the how and many ways mobile is transforming our lives, Josh seems to be on a plane flying somewhere to share his vision of the magical possibilities of truly connected world. I caught up with this very mobile entrepreneur on a recent layover.
We’re not just reading information on mobile, we’re dragging, flicking, swiping and stretching it. What behaviors on mobile intrigue and inspire you?
Designing a touch interface goes way beyond making buttons bigger for fat fingers. You’re literally holding information in your hands, and that introduces new ergonomic considerations to digital design. In the same way that real-world objects disappoint when they are physically awkward, touchscreen interfaces fail if they’re uncomfortable in the hand. This interplay of digits with digital is the crux of designing for touch: it’s not just how your pixels look, it’s about how they feel…
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