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As per my previous post here, I was trying to make my own approach to the facts behind the most confusing perspectives (Reactive, Responsive, and Interactive) ..

I’ve been led to a point where Interaction and Interactive terms are quite different yet related, and as I said it is a literate issue from my point of view ..

Interaction – noun.
Interaction Design is referring design to interactivity (designing the interactivity).

Interactive – adjective.
Interactive Design is referring interactivity to design (interacting the design).

I think I need to explain more ..
If we agree with my definition to the term “Interactive” to be a two-way flow of information (communication channel) between objects and users, in other words, how information flows from objects to users and how users respond to it.
On the other hand, if we define the term “Design” to some sort of specification to an object.
Then we can say:

Interaction Design is referring to the specification of interactive objects (objects responsive to users).

Interactive Design is referring to the information flows in response to the object’s specification.

For an instance, a cell phone is in fact is an interactive object, which means it responds to user’s actions ..
Specifying how users can interact like how many buttons, shape, size, color, .. ,etc.
I call that Interaction Design.
Controlling how information flows to users based on those specifications like visual interface, sounds, vibration, animation, .. ,etc.
I call that Interactive Design.

The way I see it, when we talk about designs in which the user can interact like Architectural Design, Industrial Design, and Graphic User Interfaces, then we are in fact designing the interactive objects (Interaction Design).
And when we talk about use cases and scenarios to control the user response to certain designs like Visualizations, Animations, Sounds, and Movements, then we are in fact interacting the designed objects (Interactive Design), in other words, Moods, Expectations, and Know-how.

There is a thin line between both perspectives, but the obvious part is “Interactivity”, it is necessary for both terms (Interaction and Interactive), if the user can not interact with objects then there is no place for neither Interaction Design nor Interactive Design.




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