Saturday, April 4, 2015 at 7:30pm
The morning after experience design

155 Freeman Street, Brooklyn

A lecture by Olia Lialina

Pioneering internet artist and web folklorist Olia Lialina recently delivered a comprehensive critique of User Experience Design (UX), the practice widely regarded as a remedy for hard to use computers, in her essay "Rich User Experience, UX and Desktopization of War."

At Light Industry, in her talk "The morning after experience design," she will illustrate the development of ideologies behind computer interfaces: from applying metaphors like files and folders in the 1970s to making computers totally invisible with today's apps. What started as a quest to give the largest amount of people access to computing power has turned into making everyone use computers without giving them any power.

The vocabulary of HCI, Human Computer Interaction design, which had previously been growing rapidly since its inception, has begun shrinking over the past two years. Forget input and output, virtual and augmented, focus and context, front-end and back-end, forms, menus, and icons.

The role of UX is to narrate satisfaction. UX covers holes in Moore's Law; when computers are still bigger than expected, it can help shrink them in your head. UX fills awkward moments when AI fails. It brings "user illusion" to a level where users have to believe that there is no computer, no algorithm, no input. But every victory of experience design—a new product "telling the story," or an interface meeting the "exact needs of the customer, without fuss or bother"—widens the gap between a person and a personal computer. The morning after "experience design" will be interface-less, disposable hardware, personal hard disc shredders, primitive customization via mechanical means.

Users are on their way out of the narration of digital culture, since even the word "user" itself is becoming a taboo among UX design professionals.

Tickets - Pay-what-you-wish ($7 suggested donation), available at door.

Please note: seating is limited. First-come, first-served. Box office opens at 7pm.

Above image: Rich User Experience, Olia Lialina & Dragan Espenschied, from the series With Elements of Web 2.0, 2006