Media Art, User Experience Design, and Interface Development

Technology for technology’s sake

Posted on 2013-05-22

There has never been as many technologists as there are now. Developers, engineers, digital artists and all other people that revolve around digital productions are legion. We are all praising this fact. So much so that we are pushing for everyone to recognize that coding is an essential skill to be taught to kids in today’s world. We are creating digital content at an increasing rate, we really have proven that the medium is the message. We have reached technology for technology’s sake.

So we build new programming languages, we design new interfaces, we build new gadgets and we showcase our prowesses. But do the masses really care? Not as often as we think, to be honest. Oh sure, they are impressed, for they oftentimes cannot build all that stuff themselves, but for the most part, if it doesn’t answer their needs, we are showing them how we masturbate.

By no means do I intend to be an alarmist. After all, the modern art philosophy was proud of creating art for art’s sake, and many great artists rose from that period.

But I am no fan of modern art.

Neither am I a fan of creating a technically impressive thing simply for the fact that it makes use of more CPUs, that it showcases the strength of the latest video card, that it displays more particles, or whatever other technical feat.

As technologist, we have the responsibility of educating ourselves first, and then our clients, that in order to create something interesting, a frail balance between content and container is essential. If we are building a utility, let’s focus on our users first. If we are creating an art piece, let’s think of our audience.

Let’s stop trying to appeal to people by numbers of features or strength of tech, let’s appeal to their emotions. Let our design meet their needs and curiosity.

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