The Future of UX & UI and the Importance of the Narrative Designer

March 28, 2017 by The GTech Operations Team

In the future, UX designers will see a shift in their careers, as Artificial Intelligence (AI) takes over their jobs. The two main reasons why AI will take over UX design are: the process of interaction design will reach perfection and personality responsive design will begin. AI is a phenomenon that will have many socio-economic consequences in the work of designers.

Retaining customers

As companies become more conscious, they will place a greater emphasis on serving rather than selling. When this is common practice, a company's experience with an individual will be its product (UX as a product). Brands that look beyond their core product to examine the holistic impact of their business on the lives of people, will retain more customers. 

The evolving role of the artist

In recent years, the role of designers in companies has changed from that of the artist to that of a tactical designer. What has emerged is a professional that combines the strategic and the creative. The future of UX and UI, and of all business for that matter, might reside in the work of a narrative designer. Narrative designers know that the best way to capture people's imaginations is through the use of a compelling story. Author Daniel Pink puts it this way, "The future belongs to a different kind of person with a different kind of mind: artists, inventors, storytellers and holistic ‘right-brain’ thinkers whose abilities mark the fault line between who gets ahead and who doesn't." 

Artificial intelligence and the narrative designer

Artificial Intelligence will provide a fluid experience for customers through personalization. By identifying the optimal interaction of a user with a given component of an interface, a computer will derive a pattern. Duplicating this pattern across an entire system or industry may solve or perfect the UX and UI aspect of a company's business. As computers become more intelligent and capable of self-learning,  computer programs will produce, not design, UX interfaces. Software libraries will house interactive components, and AI-enabled systems will take from these libraries to serve individuals. Once, AI takes over the UI and UX design aspect, designers will work more on the defining personality and story of a company or product. They will be in charge of managing its evolution too. In this manner, storytelling and character development, traditional elements of drama, will become the tools of tomorrow's designers. 

Securing U.S. Shores: Navy Minehunting Undersea Drone Passes Test

When most people hear about drone warfare in the news, they think of an airstrike. But recently, the Navy has made headlines with the success of its innovative new undersea drone technology: the Knifefish underwater mine hunting drone.

The Knifefish was designed for the Navy's Littoral Combat Ship, but is operational from any surface ship, providing the sailors on board the capability to search out and destroy undersea mines from a remote distance, increasing the safety of the military personnel during mine explosions. The 21-foot Unmanned Underwater Vehicle utilizes a low-frequency synthetic aperture sonar to perform its undersea mine hunt.

Kris Osborn, writing for Defense Systems explains that the sonar technology sends out a ping and the return data is used for immediate detection and destruction of the target. The data is also collected and stored for shipboard analysis, along with available environmental data that can be gathered, stored, and analyzed to provide intelligence support.

In recent offshore testing, Knifefish has proven its capacity to detect targets at various depths of submersion, as well as mines buried beneath the surface of the seafloor. The most recent test off the coast of Boston is at least the second test of the UUV that the Navy has conducted in its efforts to improve the software associated with the drone.

According to Capt. John Rucker, the Program Manager for the Navy's Unmanned Maritime Systems Program Office, Knifefish exceeds expectations when it comes to the accuracy of identifying and eliminating surrogate targets. This technology is still under development but is expected to be fully operational in 2017.

Using Open Standards to Consolidate Data Centers

The Defense Department's data consolidation initiative has hit a roadblock due to technological challenges and an effort to include smaller centers. Many data centers rely on proprietary legacy software. Installed years ago, these systems are not compatible with new tools. A data center that uses open standards, rather than proprietary solutions, can improve consolidation and lighten the burden of network management. Similarly, application programming interfaces (APIs) significantly reduce the cost of integration with other technology in modern data centers. It also makes work easier for managers because they can combine different infrastructures without the hassles of closed systems.

Flexibility can also be a tool against cyber attacks. Hackers are continuously improving their capacity, and data centers cannot remain static. They too must adapt to the cyber landscape. Open standards allow for the quick adjustment against cyber threats like viruses and known threats. 

Another advantage of open systems is that they allow for the government to work with more than one vendor. In the past this was not possible, because to ensure compatibility between systems, the government used the same vendor. But in embracing open standards, government IT will receive more freedom and eliminate vendor lock-in.

The federal government is not only interested in committing to open standards, it wants to incorporate disruptive networking technologies, such as software-defined networking (SDN) and network functions virtualization (NFV). These will help  manage massive networks after consolidation takes place. Through these changes, the government hopes to build a more flexible, agile and modern system of networks for the future.