The Future Will Not Be Interactive

Bret Victor:

I look around, and see a generation of bright, inventive designers wasting their lives shoehorning obsolete interaction models onto crippled, impotent platforms. I see a generation of engineers wasting their lives mastering the carelessly-designed nuances of these dead-end platforms, and carelessly adding more. I see a generation of users wasting their lives pointing, clicking, dragging, typing, as gigahertz processors spin idly and gigabyte memories remember nothing. I see machines, machines, machines.

I expect that designers who cling to these models will appear to the next generation like classical physicists as the world turned quantum, like epicycle-plotters as Kepler drew ellipses, like Aristotelians as Galileo stood atop the tower at Pisa. No matter how hard they work or how much they invent, these designers will not be revered as pioneers. They are blazing trails through a parking lot.

April 15, 2013