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Welcome to the UX Guide to Microinteraction
This guide is a motion design taxonomy system aimed at improving literacy in the functions of animated microinteractions. This system was created by Abhishek Shankar as part of a Master's Thesis in the School of Industrial Design at Georgia Tech.
Increased reliance on mobile computing devices has resulted in user expectations for improved interface clarity and performance of mobile applications. Fortunately, increased computing power and recent improvements in technology have enabled new opportunities for interface designers to improve and change the previously static dimensionality of applications. Designers can showcase more dynamic interface elements by including animated trigger feedback pairs called microinteractions (Saffer, 2013). A user action or an alteration in the system’s state triggers a narrowly targeted response. The response is then communicated through small, highly contextual visual changes in the user interface.
While microinteractions can significantly improve the user experience and add delight to the user interface, these animated interactions are a niche in the design space. Microinteractions are typically implemented only by specialized motion designers. User experience (UX) designers are generally not exposed to motion design principles and therefore exclude these elements from the design process. When designers do not consider microinteractions in the design process, a significant element of the product experience can be lost.
This system aims to improve microinteraction design literacy to facilitate the ability of UX designers to work alongside motion designers to integrate animation features into their application designs. This is accomplished by identifying and classifying various animated microinteractions currently employed in mobile device applications in order to enable the individual design disciplines to collaborate in producing applications that meet the heightened demands of the end user.