In one of the most highly-anticipated announcements in a while, Apple showed off its new Apple Watch today. It’s another in its list of must-have devices. But how long will we continue to flock to this kind of technology?
Brandon Schmittling thinks the death of our beloved devices is close at hand.
The dawn of paper-thin screens is approaching, so we must learn to design for them, he says. We must also learn to visualize what the future of such screens can and will be.
Brandon is a senior interaction designer at Huge. He’s responsible for leading projects in the user experience department at their Brooklyn office. He’s also a featured speaker at WebVisions Chicago next month, where he’ll explore a concept called ‘Device Disappearance’ in his session, “Death to All Devices.”
When devices disappear, people have conquered what is becoming a growing problem around the world: device dependence. Says Brandon, on his website, “Devices selectively limit experiences and much can be lost in translation.”
Devices, culture and community?
That’s not all. He argues that ‘device’ as a concept is too small. “The earliest devices were indiscernible from the world of their users and were tied to belief and world view,” he writes. “Devices are subservient to culture and long term we can’t keep pouring cultural meaning and resources into them and expect them to keep up.”
In Brandon’s session, he talks about the ‘fallacy of connection.’ While it seems it’s technology’s goal to connect everyone, he asks, if everyone had a device, would it really ensure the free flow of information? “It’s attractive to manage yourself and work smarter but we may not have a compelling reason for valuing connection overall.”
In the end, the point is this: we need new goals for future technology. New tech should promote connectedness between fields, Brandon says, not just between objects. And increasing the numbers of devices and their sharability among people means we’ll move beyond the limitations of “One Man One Device.”
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