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LIVING SURFACES - ACD conference, Chicago, November 11-13, 2000

Networked media - map the new landscape of experience; highlites:

THURSDAY [Bob Dylan Don't Look Back sequence w/cards] Michael Schrage/MIT Media Lab -designers as editors, not creators. "how are you going to waste iterative capital" -transparency: customers will audit development [Christopher Alexander A Pattern Language]

FRIDAY MohanSawhney/Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern U. -we learn about things by drawing boundaries around them (but remember) the compass is not the landscape, the lens is not the eye, the scaffold is not the building -the purpose of black and white markers is to help us understand grayness. don't focus on end points BOUNDARIES: -QUESTION them (always ask why?) -BRIDGE them(make the connection) -TRANSCEND them (dive down to rise above) Christopher McCarthy/ 1) don't let the technology drive 2) track the culture 3) embrace & extend the will of the people 4) describe the future, then build it "orange is the new black" Tim Parsey/Motorola -"savored a door slam" -intimate interfaces -humanism/resonance "sweet spots" digital & physical -resonance libraries -non-arrogant design language Hugh Dubberly/AOL-Netscape -concept map: represent ideas - learning how to learn -models: -improve understanding of problem -increase communication w/team -provide record [Argument Clinic - Monty Python 1973] Lisa Strausfeld/InformationArt -information art - ambient (decorative) display of information in public or private space -QUOKKA - visualize motorsports -information as entertainment

SATURDAY Idit Harel/MaMaMedia -move toward greater control & participation in media experience. 1) Consume 2) Consume, Choose 3) Consume, Choose, Create kids value: -multitasking -control -looking for "hard fun" -learning all the time -diversity, individuality -want tools, not answers -want to customize Tom Hobbs/MetaDesign -Colors magazine online -Sony VAIOnet100 David Small -words on food: read, then eat -laser cut type on vegetables -read Talmud w/other person, back & forth, argue, eat, get crumbs in binding

SUNDAY Nick Durrant/Icon Medialab -telepresence - men's room -we live our lives through questions: -who am I? -what is my purpose? -what are my values? INFORMATION->COMMUNICATION->TRANSACTION-> ?? (INTEGRATION)the task of living is designing one's self scale/people: conversation=4; intimacy (when they die, your life will change)=12; understanding (class size?)=40; recognition (good size for company)=140; memory (headmaster remembers faces in school)=2,000; neighborhood (sense of belonging)=10,000 Natalia Ilyin/NICO -semiotics-sign transfer -meaning created thru images -the stories we tell -the myths of our culture -old myths: teach people how to live -our myths: teach people how to buy "wheel of fortune" = ups & downs of life Jeff Wert/Wert & Co. -epiphanies & visions [Bunny 1998] -spirituality = empathy?

These, more or less, are the notes I took during the American Center for Design's 2000 Living Surfaces conference. The event was tremendously energizing for me; while these notes may seem woefully brief for a 3-day event, these are ideas that really grabbed me. The trip itself was a part of it, too. I rode Amtrak's Lakeshore Limited from Cleveland to Chicago & back, gliding through the midwest landscape of fields, junkyards, backyards and highways. If you have the time (about 7 hrs.) you can't beat it as a way to travel. While in Chicago I rode Blue Line trains above and below more backyards, past brick warehouses being transformed into yuppie condos.
And, as may be apparent, this article is my first serious experimentation with CSS. Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) are the preferred approach to dealing with many issues in web design. They allow a much more fluid approach to design, which I took advantage of when creating this article. I used typographic variations to indicate the importance of the ideas I had jotted down.

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