Joseph C Lawrence A designer and a philosopher, trying to help designers be better by understanding more about the mind.
  • An alternative to Personas Our understanding of psychology is growing and changing constantly. In universities and research centres, the fundamental concept of what a human mind is, and how it works, is evolving rapidly. The everyday world of work, and products and our daily lives lags behind in this understanding however, and as a result a lot of the […] 0 Comments 10 min read May 20, 2015
  • What Ayahuasca taught me about design A couple of months ago I found myself in the Sacred Valley of the Incas, in Peru. In fact I found myself lying on my back on a small mattress in the dark with 14 other people, waiting for an extremely powerful visionary and hallucinogenic medicine I had just drunk to take effect. The 6 […] 0 Comments 14 min read May 3, 2015
  • Genes, Silos & Gollum It’s just so much easier to imagine that we are all neat individuals, that have consistent personality traits, motivations and desires, isn’t it? It’s so much easier to pitch ideas to clients, and rationalise designs and solutions when we all buy into the illusion of the rock solid self inside all of us. Well, alas, being a […] 0 Comments 7 min read April 10, 2015
  • Two theories of us We consume a lot of information these days about psychology and neuroscience. Daily papers and popular magazines almost always include the results of some study or other, that give us further insights into the way humans are – what our motivations are, how we process information, the effects of our emotional states and so on. […] 0 Comments 6 min read April 4, 2015
  • The Extended Mind The term ‘Extended Mind’ was coined by Andy Clark and David Chalmers in 1998. As far as I’m concerned it’s perhaps the most fascinating area of Cognitive Science and Philosophy for designers and makers to know about. This is because it explains how things out there in the real world (a notebook, an iPhone, Google Glass…) […] 0 Comments 6 min read March 29, 2015
  • Minds People talk about ‘minds’ all the time. “It was on my mind”, “I changed my mind”, “mind-reading”, “the mind’s eye” – and it is incredibly important if you want to do good design, to understand what a (human) mind is and how it operates, but how well do we really understand this? The Great Oracle of Wikipedia’s […] 0 Comments 6 min read March 21, 2015
  • Embodied Cognition: A brief introduction Embodied cognition is a little difficult to define, so I’m going to do it mostly by way of examples. In short though it is the view that our bodies – the shapes they are in , the movements they make, the way we use our motor systems – contribute to and even form the basis […] 0 Comments 4 min read March 21, 2015
  • Humans evolved with tools, and now we can’t live without them University College London Anthropologist Matt Pope has some interesting and clearly true things to say about how tools have shaped our evolution. Our invention and use of technology is a defining characteristic of our species. Few other species use tools at all, and none with anywhere the complexity that humans do. The fact is though, […] 0 Comments 3 min read March 21, 2015
  • A lesson in consciouness Consciousness is the big kid in the playground. Something we all think we know about, but which has remained somewhat elusive to Science and Philosophy. I just want to share a quick lesson in consciousness now, which is more of a question provoker, than an answer to anything. I recently read ‘Consciousness Explained’ by Daniel […] 0 Comments 3 min read March 21, 2015
  • Remote Control Beetles 0 Comments 0 min read March 18, 2015
  • Microsoft Hololens The Microsoft Hololens looks very exciting. In a nutshell, it’s a headset that projects virtual objects and images into your visual field. So it’s kind of like virtual reality in that you are seeing things that seem real, but aren’t, in front of you, but you are also seeing what is really in front of […] 0 Comments 0 min read March 16, 2015
  • The human body as interface, and a new language of interaction As it stands, we have moved through a few core paradigms in terms of how we interact with computers and software. From the earliest days of physical levers and punchcards, through text (DOS etc.), onto the GUI and windows/Mac OS type interfaces, and recently now touch, gesture and voice. These last three have signalled a […] 0 Comments 4 min read April 16, 2013
  • Smart Contact Lenses Take a normal contact lens, and combine it with some advanced digital projection technology, and some communication capabilities and sensors, and you have smart contact lenses – a concept that feels like it is years away in the future, but is actually right here on the horizon. Smart contact lenses will be able to effectively […] 0 Comments 2 min read February 19, 2013
  • The Med Sensation Robotic Sensor Glove Here is a great example of how we are moving away from interfaces, as smart technology becomes more integrated with our natural senses and abilities. The ‘Med Sensation’ does two things – it augments our hands’ natural sensing abilities, and also quantifies the feedback that we would normally have to just intuit, by recording data […] 0 Comments 1 min read December 2, 2012
  • Minimum Viable Interface – The Beginnings I have been toying with this idea for a while now – an equivalent of the ‘Minimum Viable Product’ (MVP) concept for interface design. I’d therefore like to coin the phrase ‘Minimum Viable Interface’ (MVI) as the general umbrella term for my thoughts on how to go about the constant process of striving for perfect […] 0 Comments 2 min read November 30, 2012