Thursday, July 14, 2005

Machines of loving grace

Check out Adam Greenfield's article All watched over by machines of loving grace: Some ethical guidelines for user experience in ubiquitous-computing settings over at Boxes and Arrows.

Selected quote:

Ubiquitous computing is coming. It is coming because there are too many too powerful institutions vested in its coming; it is coming because it is a “technically sweet” challenge; it is coming because it represents the eventual convergence of devices, tools and services that became inevitable the moment they each began to be expressed in ones and zeroes....

My sense is that the challenge of ubiquitous computing for user-experience professionals resides fundamentally in two places: in the regrettable quality of interaction typically manifested by complex digital products and services designed without some degree of qualified [user experience (UX)] intervention, and in the ease with which ubiquitous systems can overwhelm or render meaningless the prerogatives of privacy, self-determination and choice that have traditionally informed our understanding of civil liberty.

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