So you’re designing a media UI — the one, multi-platform content solution that finally solves the living room, forever. It’ll be thoughtful, coherent, social and beautful to behold. It will succeed where Netflix, AppleTV, Google and Amazon have failed.

Here’s the problem: media delivery is a mud pit filled with razor blades, and the obstacles that can shred the most artful design aren’t obvious until it’s too late. In the breadth of its user base and the thorniness of its business considerations, the entertainment industry is unique, and demands a unique approach. Many familiar best practices, like identifying user targets and getting designers a seat at the decision-making table, are just as true here as anywhere else. But many more are not.

Our interaction design teams have spent five years and thousands of design hours working on media UI projects for a wide range of technology and entertainment clients. In that time, we’ve been surprised by research findings, interaction and recommendation patterns, development issues, and the strange legal and business considerations of Hollywood, and we’ve seen a few patterns emerge. This presentation, by the creative director and interaction designer most enmeshed in Ziba’s media interface projects, gets beneath the surface to unearth the real considerations that will make or break anything media related.

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