|▲ Chief designer of Samsung Electronics, Kang Su-jin, demonstrates the UX excavation of opportunity costs by listing examples including the Q Drum. Photo provided by HOKMA College of General Education
HOKMA College of General Education held its first HOKMA Forum dealing with the creative fusion of humanities and scientific technologies on Oct. 30. The forum invited Kang Su-jin (’00, English Language and Literature), to talk about her experiences in User Experience (UX) design.
Kang previously worked as a designer and art director in multiple companies including advertising agency R/GA, Adobe, and Digitas. She also taught at the university’s School of Visual Arts as a professor in computer arts.
In her introduction, Kang explained the work routine of UX designers and discussed trends in digital interfaces. She also mentioned the anatomy of a UX Unicorn in which workers from different fields of study including psychology, math, and information architecture integrate and cooperate in order to finalize an innovative device.
This year, "reality" is the keyword and a variety of hyperimmersive experience designs have been considered when creating apparatuses for customers such as the diversification of Artificial Intelligence (AI) speakers. This type of design emphasizes the connected life that corresponds to a person’s experience. The focus on making people feel connected has been an important consideration when developing products in the last 15 years.
Kang further explained several case studies and the three main compenents of a successful production: UX inventive product, UX business revolution, and UX excavation of opportunity costs. UX inventive product deals with innovative commodities that attracts consumers in an unfamiliar way. A representative prototype is iTunes and iPods, which allowed users to easily receive access to readily available music.
UX business revolution entails the cycling process of experimenting and establishing a hypothesis in order to create a service that satisfies the consumer’s needs. For example, Uber, which provides peer-to-peer ridesharing, suggested a new platform for an extended range of transportation.
UX excavation of opportunity costs is about utilizing and coming up with suitable technology by changing one’s way of thinking. The Q Drum, a low-cost rollable water container for developing countries, is an example of this component. On the other hand, she mentioned some products she believed to have failed, including the Segway, a two-wheeled electric commuting vehicle. She said it did not regard the user’s needs in terms of context since it might be dangerous or embarrassing to operate in public.
Kang demonstrated some products to give a better understanding of UX design, revealing the process of completing Flip, an interactive display from Samsung Electronics. She mainly aimed to provide users with a mechanism for cooperation with their situational and societal contexts, especially during meetings in conference rooms.
When the lecture ended, students raised questions about the restraints of UX designers having to work solely on a particular task in corporations.
“There are separated fields for designated duties that are ordered by the company,” Kang answered. “However, since there are processes that involve the proposition of value and the need for a variety of perspectives, I believe that UX design is a boundary-crossing career in which cooperation between different divisions is essential to generate innovative and cost-efficient products for users.”