‘From User Experiences to Human Experiences’ at UX week 2014
On September 12, Anna Pohlmeyer gave an invited main stage presentation at the international conference ‘UX week 2014’ in San Francisco.
Since 2003, UX week is a yearly conference that attracts design professionals from all over the world. This year, approximately 450 participants gathered in San Francisco for this occasion. The conference setup includes two days of invited, single-track presentations and two days of hands-on workshops. The event is organized by Adaptive Path and hosted by Jesse James Garrett.
In her talk ‘From User Experiences to Human Experiences’, Anna reflected on advancements and future directions in the field of UX. In particular, she discussed opportunities to design experiences that affect people’s long-term happiness.
Recent initiatives in the design field aspire to move from a focus on functionality and pleasure in a momentary use context to a focus on the well-being in people’s lives as a whole. This emphasis also implies a shift from seeing the user as a system operator to again – first and foremost – a human being. For instance, happiness is a universal human goal, yet, it has hardly been explicitly incorporated in design. Building on an extensive body of knowledge from Positive Psychology, i.e. the science of happiness, Positive Design investigates how design can contribute to the long-term happiness of people. The explicit design objective is to stimulate and/or enable human flourishing. In this endeavor, a focus on meaningful experiences is indispensable. Here, positive experiences are more than desirable attributes of a human-product interaction; they are the purpose of the interaction as such. Anna Pohlmeyer will share the overall vision of as well as viable approaches to Positive Design, illustrating how designing for meaningful experiences can be fulfilling for users and designers alike.
Image by Rick Threlfall