Talking odd interplay with information and ephemeral tech with Tea Uglow

As technology becomes more functional, does it become less human-centric?

Tea Uglow shares her thoughts on the direction that technology is taking on a global scale and how her role at Google’s Creative Labs has more to do with studying human nature than one might think. Before taking to the Design Indaba Conference stage, Uglow chatted about misconceptions folks have about the way technology is evolving and what propels her own creative thinking.

According to this creative director, designers ought to pay more attention to why they create something rather than what that something might be. Though humanity’s defining feature is unparalleled intelligence, Uglow reminds us that we are creatures of gesture and instinctive interaction. Thus, the best of our creations reflect it.

Uglow is interested in minimising the barrier of metal and silicon that sits between us and the information we seek through the devices that occupy our daily lives. Though smartphones and computers provide us with insightful news reports, hilarious memes and celebrity gossip with speed and convenience, the relationship formed between user and machine is still essentially linear and narrow. Uglow says this has a deminishing effect on how we ultimately interpret knowledge.

“We don’t really want that to be mediated by plastic and electricity. We want that to be as natural as possible. Eventually it becomes as natural as possible, because I think the most natural solution will win,” she says.

“I wish there was more of that happening, because as it’s happening, it makes the technology more human and less functional. When technology becomes more human, more funny, it becomes something we can understand and live with.”

Watch the Talk with TL Uglow