Honestly I am absolutely stunned by how much contents about interactivity Chris Crawford can come up with. But regardless of the amaze that I have (since I am really an amateur), Crawford’s interesting yet reasonable definition on interactivity really convinced me with the solid stand point of the “three-step chain”, it is really something lucid and clear about the topic and I believe I can never go wrong with interactive design as long as I stick with the “three-step chain” rule. Therefore rather than coming up with my own definition of interaction, I would just follow Crawford’s opinion, and when come cross whether a good physical interaction, it is really about how to maintain each steps in high quality so that the entire chain will be strong and smooth.
Instead of pulling out some good examples this time, I really do want to talk about one thing that Crawford mentioned, which is the “intense reaction”. It caught me since I sometimes behave insane when dealing with certain piece of garments as a relatively crazy fashion enthusiast, just like what those reader do to the books. Take indigo-dye garments as an example, like a good pair of selvedge Japanese Vegetable indigo-dye raw denim, the process of wearing it and it fades to the beautiful unique patterns of you wearing it seems like a legit interactive process for me before I hit Crawford’s book, and now I am glad that I have realized such kind of process is just an exaggerate reaction I have towards the garment. The denim does not process my wearing, so the step 2 is broken and I am the only one who is emotional.
Bret Victor kindly warned us when we are ready to build something “interactive”, it is like a caution note on the floor before people are entering a watery and slippery area. It is always good have some voices like that before it is too late, since the technology develops rapidly and we really don’t want to see something not interactive but defined as interactive. Lastly, technology is just a tool.