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Chris R Becker
Interaction Design Paradigms inspired by

Whether you are a seasoned Designer (have webmaster in your CV) or new to the world of digital software product design (UXD, UXR, UI, IxD, IA, CX, LX, VD, FE, SO, PO, ML, AI, etc) the universe in which you can apply your craft and skills are continuing to grow. Let’s review the paradigms that construct how we think about, design for, develop in, and deploy software for people all around the globe.

Human interactions options

Illustration of a Police officer and the variety of camera technology in their environment, Body camera, surveillance camera, car cameras, phone recordings, etc.
Camera Technology

I was reading an article about the role of body cameras in policing. See here

As I was getting into the article, I was paused by this quote:

“Technology is inherently neutral; it’s how you use it that decides whether it’s a net positive or negative,”

— Scott Greenwood, a prominent constitutional rights attorney.

I said to my wife out loud. “Technology is not neutral?! Technology is designed by humans and therefore is incapable of being neutral! Right?” She agreed with a shrug which is her way of telling me, maybe go write about it. So here we are. …

As 10 x 10 illustration
10x10 Illustration

In graduate school (2009–2010) at the Art Center College of Design for Media Design Practices, I was given a 10x10 list of things I should know before starting my first day. Think of it as a prep list for what we should know coming into graduate school. Now that I have been out a practicing UX Designer for 10 yrs. Here is my 10 x 10 list for being a Designer. (UX/IxD/UI/Visual Design/CX/LX).

This list is Books to read, thinkers to follow, people to learn from, as well as design projects worth paying attention to.

How a tool can go from useful to useless and nearly kill you in between

Dear Reader,
Our world is full of tools…

Building Tools

and I’m not talking about human “Tools” but we all know there are too many of them as well…

Jersey Shore “tool”

As human beings, we have been catapulted to the top of the food chain with our ability to use tools.

“… What is important is that you have faith in people, that they’re basically good and smart, and if you give them tools, they’ll do wonderful things with them.“

— Steve Jobs


An image of a miro whiteboard canvas from a collaborative mind mapping activity. Shows students collaborating on articulating the conditions for making collaboration successful.
A Collaborative Group Mindmap sample from a Workshop on Collaborative Design 07/20/2021

At the risk of sounding like “Captain obvious” collaboration is essential to Design. You might be thinking “yeah of course!” But let’s dive into ways Design is synonymous with collaboration.

(I will be using. “Big D” Design to refer to the vast number of roles from Product/CX/UX/UI/IxD/Visual Design and beyond)

Collaboration review

The action of working with someone to produce or create something.

A Illustration of a hammer as a patent diagram and a nail
Hammer + Nail

“I suppose it is tempting, if the only tool you have is a hammer, to treat everything as if it were a nail.”

Abraham Maslow — 1966

Abraham Maslow, the father of human psychology developed an idea known as Maslow’s hammer, also called the law of instruments, it is a cognitive bias concept that involves the over-reliance on a familiar tool.

As a refresher, Cognitive bias is a systematic error in thinking that occurs when people are processing and interpreting information in the world around them and affects the decisions and judgments that they make.

Tools in UX and beyond

Technology tools, business tools…

An illustration of a man being a Raconteur storyteller
Design Raconteur

Raconteur — a person who tells anecdotes in a skillful and amusing way.

Pssst… Storytelling is your job! As Designers, whatever your ilk Product/UX/UI/IxD/CX/LX/Graphic/Strategy/Education/Writing/etc., your role is storytelling. (From this point onward, I will be using “Designer” to discuss the various roles in design as it applies to the topic.)

The Panofsky Method + Le Corbusier’s Building Model

If you are unfamiliar with the Panofsky method it comes from Erwin Panofsky, a German art historian who in 1932 looked into the study of iconography and believed that for us to fully understand the meaning behind any particular piece of art/design, cultural context needs to be applied.

Panofsky applied his method to iconography (religious symbols) in art and wrote multiple books including Meaning in the Visual Arts.

Illustration of Flexible Psychology — Olivia Newton-John Physical on the brain
Build Flexible Psychology — Olivia Newton-John — Physical

I recently came across the description of a personality trait and thought “this is a UX designer!”

The British Psychological Society’s Research Digest blog explains:

A psychologically flexible person is characterized by a set of attitudes and skills: they are generally open to and accepting of experiences, whether they are good or bad; they try to be mindfully aware of the present moment; they experience difficult thoughts without ruminating on them; they seek to maintain a broader perspective when faced with a challenge; they continue to pursue important goals despite setbacks; and they maintain contact with “deeper values,” no matter…

Getting Struck in the face Log Cutting Failure

Successful problem-solving involves failing. Failing comes in many forms and can be called many things. We have called failure things like “getting stuck”, “I’m blocked”, “I’ve gotten derailed”, “I’m sidetracked”, “I have made a misstep”, “I got defeated” or “I’m uninspired” when solving problems one of these “Failures” is enviable. The question:

Bob Dylan — Subterranean Homesick Blues

What do you do when you “fail”?

There are many types of failure but let’s discuss the two main occurrences where failure looms large.

  1. Failure to start
  2. Failure in execution

1. Failure to Start

At art school, I studied painting and learned the concept known as…

Chris R Becker

Sr. UX Designer / Educator / Author of Learn HCI. Former Lead Curriculum Architect @ 2U. Parent, surfer, tinkerer.

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