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Mariusz Cieśla gave many useful guidelines for proactive design, including pitfalls to avoid and cations around privacy. He emphasized solving problems for people as they appear not before or after, as relevant experiences are the most magical. He urged designers to solve user problems first, and sell stuff second, warning that many companies now are overly focused on how beacon technology and proactive design can exploit users for commerce, which risks turning users away from these experiences altogether. Indoor positioning is going to be a major key in the future of proactive design.

Mariusz emphasized the need to create dialog and value choice in proactive services because wrong assumptions are the bane of design. Don’t forget to let users tell you what they want or prefer. Mariusz recommended that everyone in your company should spend some time working in customer service, to be in intimate contact with the users.

Make sure that your proactive service is friendly, but not overly-intrusive. Your proactive design should not feel like an overly-attached creepy stalker. He warned against the pitfalls of “smart” defaults and generally being smarter than the user. Mariusz highlighted the need for one person to own the entire development process so that the back ends and front ends have the same goals.

Companies mentioned

Lifetramp (Mariusz's company)
Buddy media
Google Now
Delta Airlines
Bodymedia (part of Jawbone)
apple store iOS app
google glass

People quoted
Tony Costa, people expect proactive design.
Paul Graham, Live in the future and build what’s missing.


Adaptive design is a new paradigm which has already begun to tremendously affect how we build services and applications. As the world has filled with sensors (and will continue to do so), technology has become capable of building a much greater understanding of context. Our understanding of context has expanded beyond time, place, and situation to include human emotional state and individual personality. Our understanding of what can be used as a "sensor" to gather data about this context is expanding from GPS and accelerometers to email accounts interlinked to social networks and credit card data.

Some of the Twittering attendees of the conference were irritated that the focus of the talk was not privacy. In fact, Avi made a statement at the beginning of the talk that privacy is a big issue in relation to this topic, but that he was not going to touch upon it today. The tension between convenience and privacy right now seems to be won by convenience most of the time. I'd like to think that this could change, but I don't see any evidence of it.

Apps Mentioned

Google Now
Daily Dress

Estimote beacons
Broadcom indoor positioning chip
Sensegon Persona-based advertising

People Quoted

Mark Weiser—ubiquitous computing
Yoram M Kalman--HCI Markers, Use observation of user behavior to diagnose illness or special needs.

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