The 20th century challenge was to design a world of useful new machines. Form Followed Function. The rise of consumer culture introduced empathy and user-centric design. Form Followed Emotion.

We are now entering an era of quantification and automation. Every person, place, and thing is being written about, annotated, digitised, and automated. Machines and services are designed to serve our new analog and digital composite selves: the “Meta Me.”

What does the Meta Me mean for the world of product and experience design?

Every brand will use machine intelligence to chase the digital breadcrumbs and understand your increasingly complex meta self. Chat bots will acquire AI to engage your meta self in more human-like ways. AI could also animate parts of your meta self, like your Facebook Messenger profile, to operate semi-autonomously on your behalf. Chat bots could then save you the trouble by talking to your meta self instead, robot-to-robot. In the fertile ground between AI and chatbots, UX design will encompass the arts of language and persuasion, as well as attributes like plasticity, creativity, and empathy.

In this talk Mark will discuss the impacts of ubiquitous computing, invisible interfaces, and machine intelligence on design, daily life, and business. Let’s explore where all this is headed. What happens when Form Follows Me?



Mark is a renowned designer with a 25-year career of creating for the world’s largest and most innovative companies.

An early pioneer of software user experience, Mark helped forge the disciplines around user interface design and mobile platforms. His focus on groundbreaking user experience continues today, as he addresses the modern challenge of design beyond the visible artifact – in the realm of behaviour, the interaction between human and machine, and other unseen elements.

Prior to founding argodesign, Mark served as Chief Creative Officer of frogdesign, founding the firm’s software business and guiding its transformation into a modern strategic design organisation. A veteran design leader, innovator and patent holder, Mark is an internationally recognised expert and valued advisor on software, experience design, emerging computing platforms, and mobile applications.

Mark serves on the advisory boards of Trusted Innovators and Cognitive Advisors, he is one of Fast Company’s Most Creative People, and he was nominated as Fast Company’s World’s Greatest Designer of 2014. He lives and breathes design, craftsmanship, and building useful and enjoyable experiences of all types.

Mark Rolston’s talk “Form Follow Me” at UX London 2017

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