(Form + Content + Context) / Time = Experience Design

A new discipline of design is emerging from the needs and forms of communication in the network economy. Experience design“ is a discipline created by the reality of communication today, when no point of contact has a simple beginning and end and all points of contact must have meaning embedded in them.

Once graphic design dealt with the form of communication; communication design became the discipline covering form and content. Now, experience design considers the form, content and context of communication occurring over time. It recognizes the imperatives of brand experience and the characteristics of the user's experience. When communication leaps across media at the speed of electrons, meaning is the only true currency.

Design does not add value in this economy—design creates value. Experience design is the purposeful creation of value in the network economy, often through creating the relationships within the e-commerce world.

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First published in Gain 1.0: AIGA Journal of Design for the Network Economy.

About the Author: Richard Grefé is the director emeritus of AIGA, the professional association for design, the oldest and largest professional association of designers in the United States representing the interests of 27,000 designers working in a variety of communication media and dimensions, ranging from type and book designers to new media and experience designers. AIGA, o ver twenty years under Ric’s aegis, has become a leading advocate for the value of designing, as a way of thinking and as a means of creating strategic value for business, the civic realm and social change. Currently he is teaching “Human-centered designn for social change” at Wesleyan University. Ric earned a BA from Dartmouth College in economics, worked in intelligence in Asia, reported from the Bronx County Courthouse for AP, wrote for Time magazine on business and the economy and then earned an MBA from Stanford Graduate School of Business. Following an early career in urban design and public policy consulting, Ric managed the association responsible for strategic planning and legislative advocacy for public television and led a think tank on the future of public television and radio in Washington.