What is PSIxD?

PSIxD means Psychology applied to Interaction Design. It’s the evolution of digital interaction as a psychosocial space, that is able to create new variables and dynamics.

UX Researchers are expert of the cognitive level that is necessary to achieve a good experience and usability and at the same time Anthropologists bring fundamental competences in understanding ecosystems, cultural differences and real-world behaviors. PSIxD brings to the table another piece of the puzzle, helping designers to analyse and design the relevant motivational and psychosocial variables driving social network dynamics from the beginning to their maturity.

A Social UX Researcher is someone that has these kind of competences, it’s another step in this field and it’s even part of a the expression of a new alliance between Psychology and Design.

The practical advantage to integrate PSIxD in the research and design process is:

  1. Less errors due to more comprehensive and detailed valuation of past and potential projects.
  2. More understanding from a deeper knowledge and more data about users and network to make better analysis and more informed design choices.
  3. Higher probability to induce certain behaviors in users and groups.
  4. More criteria to manage the evolution of the community.

Donald Norman agrees!

I think that it’s time for a second new alliance between psychology and interaction design.

The evolution of the interaction as a social space needs new psychological points of view. The psychophysiologic, cognitive and behavioral points of view (part of the history of human computer interaction, from the beginning) are fundamental but not enough for the new variables, factors, dynamics and levels that emerge in social networks. The evolution of the mediated interaction as a social space is changing the user from just a behavioral and cognitive system in a more complex cognitive psychosocial and psychodynamic system.

During the event Meet the Media Guru in Milan, I asked Donald Norman an opinion about my point of view and this is his answer.

He agreed!

I think that these challenges and opportunities can’t be solved by anthropology that is too narrative as discipline. The alternative isn’t the reductionism but a balance between different psychological approaches.

The next day I talked with him about my PSIxD approach. Cross the fingers for me and stay tuned… ;)

Video by Roberto Bonzio (thanks)