Creative Mornings Hamburg: PRESERVE
Preserving our common computing and interaction design history does not mean to shelf the stuff into a museum’s archive and forget about it. Nor does it mean to put it onto a pedestal and worship the software and hardware artifacts of pe-digital-historic times. Knowing about our design roots simply provides an (un)fair advantage to learn from mistakes and failed attempts of generations of designers that preceded us. Sometimes it even turns out, that the original systems are far superior over the current gear and platforms. Understanding the pure vision, even if ahead of times, is key for innovation now.

Did you know for instance that the roots of graphical user interfaces, hypertext, tablet computing, augmented reality, groupware are more than 50 years old? Understanding the motivation is even more stunning. As Douglas Engelbart remembered his goals in 1960 [interview 2000]:

“[The world is] getting more complex than ever at a more rapid rate that these problems we’re facing have to be dealt with collectively. […] So if I could contribute as much as possible, so how – generally speaking – mankind can get more capable in dealing with complex urgent problems collectively, then that would be a terrific professional goal.”

Are we making progress – as a species on our blue planet? Are we tackling the right design problems to stay here for the next couple of generations? Let’s face the issues and approach solutions to fix Spaceship Earth.

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June 07, 2019