Understanding Interaction Design Practices
There is an undesirable gap between HCI research aimed at influencing interaction design practice and the practitioners in question. To close this gap, we advocate a theoretical and methodological focus on the day-to-day, lived experience of designers. To date, this type of theory-generative, experientially oriented research has focused on the users of technologies, not the designers. In contrast, we propose that HCI researchers turn their attention to producing theories of interaction design practice that resonate with practitioners themselves. In part one of this paper, we describe the mismatch between HCI research and interaction design practices. Then we present vignettes from an observational study of commercial design practice to illustrate the issues at hand. In part two, we discuss methodological and theoretical changes in research practice that might support the goal of integrating HCI research with interaction design practices. We then discuss current research methods and theories to identify changes that might enlarge our view on practice. In part three, we elaborate on our theoretically minded agenda and a kind of ideal-type theory.