CHI 2007 Advance Program: Session Details

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Opening Plenary: Reaching for the Intuitive (Opening Plenary)

8.30 AM - 10:00 AM


Bill Moggridge

Perhaps the mind is like an iceberg, with just a small proportion of the overall amount protruding above the water into consciousness, but the vast bulk of the subconscious submerged and out of sight. If we operate above the water line, we only have a small volume to use, but if we allow ourselves to use the whole submerged mass, we have a lot more to work with.

Bill will attempt to show how design thinking can harnesses intuitive mental processes, leveraging tacit knowledge as well as the explicit knowledge of logically expressed thoughts. He will give examples of how designers and design teams learn by doing, allowing the subconscious mind to inform intuitions that guide actions. Some of the examples will come from his experience as Cofounder of IDEO, and others will be taken from his recent book Designing Interactions (, in which he interviews forty influential designers who have shaped our interaction with digital technology.

Cofounder of IDEO, a firm that helps companies innovate through the design of products, services, environments and digital experiences.

Bill founded his design firm in London in 1969, adding a second office in 1979 in Palo Alto, at the heart of California's Silicon Valley. He designed the first laptop computer, the GRiD Compass, and pioneered Interaction Design as a discipline. In 1991 he merged his company with David Kelley and Mike Nuttall to form IDEO, which now has offices in Palo Alto, San Francisco, Chicago, Boston, London, Munich and Shanghai. Bill has been active in design education throughout his career, notably as Visiting Professor in Interaction design at the Royal College of Art in London, and Associate Professor in the Design program at Stanford University. He is most interested in what people want, who they are, and how they interact with other people, things and places. His book Designing Interactions is available from The MIT Press.