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Johnny Chung Lee’s Surprise Appearance

Ok, the maestro of Carnegie Mellon University didn’t make a real-live appearance at the conference this afternoon. However, the organizers showed a video of the interaction designer-cum-hacker’s much-praised presentation from this year’s TED. Check out this slideshow of Lee’s projects and this recent question-and-answer with him.

The short clip followed Bjorn Hartmann, a Stanford PhD candidate and editor in chief of Ambidextrous Magazine, on trial and error in experience design. Hartmann’s presentation included an interesting segment on a piece of design software dubbed, which facilitates rapid prototyping of both software and hardware products. A lot of the attendees I’ve talked to over the last day and a half are actively trying to do more of this even in small and medium design organizations.

Hartmann described the way a design team could create an interface and then see how it would function on five different cell phone models, for instance. Or, how subtle programming differences would change a piece of interactive software. If you’re a designer interested in using the software, you can check out Hartmann’s website for some more info.

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