Cliff Kuang on Disney’s subtle, secretive effort to redesign the Disney World experience for visitors:
This represents a new frontier for design. Over the past 30 years, as every facet of our lives, from shopping to schooling, has migrated on to computer screens, designers have focused on perfecting user interfaces — placing a button in just the right place for a camera trigger or collapsing the entire payment process into a series of swipes and taps. But in the coming era of ubiquitous sensors and miniaturised mobile computing, our digital interactions won’t take place simply on screens. As the new Disney World suggests, they will happen all around us, constantly, as we go about our day. Designers will be creating not products or interfaces but experiences, a million invisible transactions.
Design is, after all, how something works. And:
In the wrong hands, this is a dystopian prospect — technology’s unwanted intrusion into our every waking moment. But without the proper design, without considering how new products and services fit into people’s day-to-day lives, any new technology can be terrifying. That’s where the challenge comes in. The task of making this new world can’t be left up to engineers and technologists alone - otherwise we will find ourselves overrun with amazing capabilities that people refuse to take advantage of.
It’s an interesting notion, that all technology without the proper, humanizing design would be terrifying.