Interface Art & Discourse

johannes p osterhoff - Interface Art & Discourse

My great first students at Berliner Technische Kunsthochschule had to render their most striking experiences with interfaces into concrete projects.

The gap between visual interfaces, the equivalents and correlations they use and what the computer actually is doing is widening. Nowadays the How of a task the computer has to fulfill tends to be reflected upon only on the layer of the graphical user interface. What You See Is What You get!

But what if What You See Is… not true anymore?

And what if these transparent interfaces tend to lack a necessary reflection on themselves? Or as Jay Bolter puts it in Windows and Mirrors: “The mistake [often made], is to assume that the single goal of all design is to make the interface transparent, when in fact the goal is to establish an appropriate rhythm between being transparent and being reflective. This is a common error in Interface design and Human-Computer-Interaction today.”

In the research of this seminar students should investigate the gap between interface and program logic and question the graphical user interface—what would happen if we trusted these replies of the machine entirely, and what if we couldn’t trust them at all? Which strange occurrences have struck us when using our computers lately?

The aim of the seminar was to question existing analogies and metaphors and to offer the students a verbal toolbox for reflection upon current developments in interface design.

Have a look at the wiki of the seminar (in German).