TOPIC: After this class’ discussion and exercise, and reading Chris Crawford’s definition(The Art of Interactive Design, chapters 1 and 2) and Bret Victor’s rant(“A Brief Rant on the Future of Interaction Design” ), how would you define physical interaction? What makes for good physical interaction? Are there works from others that you would say are good examples of digital technology that are not interactive?
I think physical interaction is a tangible communication between you and the designer or artist. The artist choose to use a more active and physical media form to embrace his/her audience. The audience, on the other hand, could immerse themselves into the project and experience all the blood and flesh and soul of it. It also makes people feel excited because is a new and renovative area and full of adventures. Because in the process of speaking hearing and thinking, people are communicate with each other and communications help you broaden your vision.
In terms of good physical interaction, I think those designs which integrate forms with functions are great. Because it is hard to be both inside and outside unified. It has to come all the way from the soul and idea of the artist to the expression form and details of the project. If one of the process has gone wrong, it might fail to conduct a coherent experience of interaction. Besides a good physical interaction might also let you do at least a loop of conversation between you and the project. This means you and the project should both talk your ideas out and exchange thoughts during interaction process. Because this is like a truly interaction. You act and you gain some new thoughts and ideas from others.
One of the work of an Indian artist Nalini Malni called Gamepieces is a good example of digital technology but not interactive. It is a installation with images projected on four big cylinders. The cylinders are motorised and rotating. It counts for digital technology because it drives by digital motor and projector. But it is not interactive because it moves as it was settled. The audiences` actions do not get a specific respond from it. In this term, there is not a loop of conversation going on. Though this project might give you new thoughts and inspirations by its art forms, but those do not come from interaction.
The other examples are the washer and dryer. It works as you give them certain kinds of orders and they start to do their job automatically. But it does not matter what status of you giving them orders, whether you are dancing to give them orders or you are crying, they will do the same job. Because they have got a fixed programme. Same things happen in automatic trash bins, refrigerator and so on.