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“Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.”

– Steve Jobs

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Interaction Designer. Educator.

USC Rossier School of Education

Object & Screen Speculations

Huntington Library

Recent Posts

Occasional thoughts on Interaction Design


The grain of the material in design

10th September 2014 By phil

Technology as the designer’s material

I would argue that the modern designer’s primary material is technology. And to effectively design and make digital things, you need to deeply understand technology’s affordances, characteristics, and limits – i.e. the grain of the material. Immerse yourself in serious making with technology, and you will become a better designer, able to invent new approaches and designs through your understanding of the material.

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Animism as a Metaphor for Interaction Design

22nd April 2013 By phil

SIGCHI 2013 paper

AniThings: Animism and Heterogeneous Multiplicity

Joshua McVeigh-Schultz and I presented our paper at SIGCHI 2013 in Paris. It presents ideas and a project on using animism as a metaphor for interaction design, something I’ve been exploring for the last few years.

Go here for a link to a free download of the paper.
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Dimensional Story Space

28th November 2011 By phil

I wrote this article on interactive story telling in 1992 for a group called Interactive Expression, a group of us in the Los Angeles area who worked at Philips and other early “multimedia” companies. We got together to discuss the new medium of Interactive Media.
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