Just the other day the web was treated to A Brief Rant on the Future of Interaction Design, in which Bret Victor examines recent videos about near-future interactive products. To put it bluntly, he finds their range of interactive possibilities wanting, and follows with an exploration of how much potential there is to explore.
This kind of stuff is inspiring: people share and re-share it with excitement. Those are great days, when a bit of the dust of the daily grind falls from our eyes. Look at what might be. We look at each other, nod knowingly and feel good.
Then we turn back to what we were doing just before. Work’s gotta get done; bills gotta get paid. Just minutes ago we were ready to start a revolution. Minutes later we’re back to wondering how to get that thing to do that thing. Cashflow, whispers some deep part of your brain. Hard to argue with that. Before long the future is forgotten again. And we’re back doing what we always do.
Obviously, nobody intends for things to go that way. Lately here we’ve been talking about this very thing: how to realize some of those really interesting, inspiring ideas, while keeping ourselves fed. We think forming habits around that goal is key, and have come up with a few that we’ll be working on:
- Make room for experiments. This is old advice, but it’s a lesson so often told that we’d be fools to ignore it.
- Give clients a wider, more daring range of possibilities. Let them surprise and challenge us.
- Think outside the screen on every project. Always ask how we can work with the physical world as well.
- Strive to connect and draw from other fields. Multidisciplinary is at the heart of how we want to work.
There are likely many ways to keep the day-to-day details from grinding down the excitement of new ideas. Are you striking that balance? How are you doing it? You can comment with a one-click tweet below.