Meta-Moments

Is it possible to design for thoughtfulness? Why might this be important?

In a fascinating article, Andrew Grimes questions whether we have ever had a moment on the internet when you’ve been forced to stop and think about what you’re doing? 

“Maybe you’ve been surprised. Maybe you’ve stumbled across something new. Maybe you’ve come to see things in a different light. I call such experiences meta-moments: tiny moments of reflection that prompt us to think consciously about what we’re experiencing”

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We have posted extensively here about how we individuals and companies have sought to encourage us to adopt more mindful practices. Meta-moments can provide us with space to interpret, understand, and add meaning to our experiences. A little friction in our flow is all we need. A roadblock must be overcome. A speed bump must be negotiated. A diversion must be navigated. Each of these cases involves our attention in a thoughtful way. Our level of engagement deepens. We have an experience we can remember. 

As Grimes argues, our design practices don’t encourage this, though. We distract our users more than we intrigue them. We provide the constant possibility of better options elsewhere, so that users never have to think: “Okay, what next?” Our attention is always directed outward, not inward. And it—not the technology itself, but how we design our interactions with it—makes us dumb.

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In the constant game of choice architecture design, in Grimes’s opinion “UXD strives toward frictionless flow: removing impediments to immediate action and looking to increase conversions at all costs. This approach delivers some great results, but it doesn’t always consider the wider story of how we can design and build things that sustain a lasting relationship. With all the focus on usability and conversions, we can forget to ask ourselves whether our online experiences are also enriching and fulfilling”

What do you think? A few more design roadblocks every once in a while could lead to deeper experiences?

(This post comes from our Designing Deeper blog
(Este post foi retirado do nosso blog Designing Deeper)