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Tuesday, February 09, 2010

McCarthy & Wright's Threads of Experience

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While many critics argue M&W's pragmatic approach to experience design as too futuristic and ideal to be of any use today, their proposed four threads of experience can give us designers are framework to help capture experience from an inter-subjective perspective:

  • The Sensual Thread: Is concerned with our sensory engagement with a situation, which orients us to the concrete, palpable, and visceral character of the experience.
  • The Emotional Thread: Is concerned with an understanding or sense-making process (the sense or meaning ascribed to an object or person because of the values, goals, and desires we have).
  • The Compositional Thread: Is concerned with relationships between the parts and the whole of an experience.
  • The Spatio-Temporal Thread: Encompasses the spatio-temporal component of experience, particularly, how it is connected to our past and is related to our future, and, whether we experience life as emergent or as determined.
As we think of the experience technology as woven by threads, we can attempt to capture the multi-facetted, complex, and often interweaved nature of the human experience, which runs continually parallel in its constant, active interpretation.

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