[LAD] Experience driven design and Linux Audio

Paul Davis paul at linuxaudiosystems.com
Tue Sep 30 14:56:06 UTC 2014

On Tue, Sep 30, 2014 at 9:58 AM, Harry van Haaren <harryhaaren at gmail.com>

> Hi Linux Audio Developers,
> TL;DR; Discussing experience driven design for linux audio.
> I'd like to discuss the "age of experiences". Allow me 10 minutes of
> your time, to watch a video by Aral Balkan talk about development of
> technology, FLOSS, design, and the future.

<las> HarryHaaren: interesting talk
<las> HarryHaaren: i want to agree with him except for one major issue (for
<las> HarryHaaren: i'm not interested in making "consumer tools"
<HarryHaaren> las, I came across Aral's work recently, and its been very
interesting for me anyway.
<las> HarryHaaren: and if i'm not making consumer tools, then my model is
not apple but tools for cabinetry
<HarryHaaren> sure, valid point: I agree.
<las> HarryHaaren: and everything he says would be total bullshit and
totally inappropriate there
<HarryHaaren> but I don't feel that's the case for the whole Linux-Audio
<las> HarryHaaren: indeed
<las> HarryHaaren: but basically, the bit that is missing is easily
summarized: Live and plugins
<las> HarryHaaren: these are where his "experience driven" stuff matters
<las> HarryHaaren: and yes, i agree that it does matter
<HarryHaaren> agreed: that happens to be just what i'm particularly
interested in :D
<las> HarryHaaren: he even uses the term "tools"
<las> HarryHaaren: i think this is a serious abuse of the word, but he's
not the one who started this
<las> HarryHaaren: when my wife uses a computer, she really doesn't want
tools, she wants his experience thing
<las> HarryHaaren: tools are things people use to gain leverage over the
world, so in some sense, it seems appropriate
<HarryHaaren> I'd quite like some more of the experience thing - in the
right places. And the power of "under-the-hood" available when/if required,
agreed again
<las> HarryHaaren: but they are also things that for centuries, people have
expected to have to learn, to master
<las> HarryHaaren: when i look at the design of iOS what i see is a huge
effort to remove learning from the whole user experience
<las> HarryHaaren: to make everything absolutely obvious (once you've
learned a few basic ideas about the UI)
<HarryHaaren> sure: not something i'm fond of for all situations: too much
"generic" is bad in the arts / creative sectors IMO
<las> HarryHaaren: when the *task* is simple, this seems appropriate
<las> HarryHaaren: but when the *task* is not simple, i think its
<las> HarryHaaren: if you look at a table saw or a crosscut saw or a
router, they fail almost every possible test of "user experience"
<las> HarryHaaren: they are dangerous, loud and more or less completely
opaque as far as how to use them to get a particular result
<las> HarryHaaren: and yet ....
<HarryHaaren> sure: but learn to use it and its no problem. I appreciate
that, and i see how it applies to certain software too
<las> HarryHaaren: yes, and the learning about the tool leads to learning
about the task also
<las> HarryHaaren: do you know how easy it would be to make a plugin called
MakeItSoundBetter that just had 3 buttons?
<las> HarryHaaren: "change it", "that was better", "that was worse"
<las> HarryHaaren: people would love this "tool". and by using it, they
would learn absolutely *nothing* about what they were doing
<las> HarryHaaren: i don't want to help create that sort of world
<las> HarryHaaren: on the other hand, i don't do much auto maintainance, so
... what does that say? :)
<HarryHaaren> fair enough. I probably would. But let people click the
"advanced" button, see the algorithms, and learn about the tool & the task
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