Year 2

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Embrace the web browser

The practice of graphic design is rapidly changing through immediate developments in technology. Thus the conventional equation between the designer and content as well as the position of author in respect to both of them. Having said that, the substantial key point is in the meaning of the design work being interpreted. Today the web has faced designers with a new paradigm in which the prior reader has become the user —the person who experiences the web content; produces content as well as consumes it.

What used to be a one-way static medium has evolved into a very rich and interactive experience through web browsers, mobile applications, cloud services and etc. The complexity of designing, such interactivity has left a small part for graphic design (in its conventional notion) to be effective in what the design will communicate. Therefore the user experiences and intentionality has transcended more than ever meaning the graphic designer has to become the future innovator in order to affect the message.

“As a culture, we seem to be staring at screens for longer periods of time with every new product release cycle. User interface design evolves with our literacy of the hand, eye and mind to become more and more seamless, intuitive, natural, invisible. We each move, navigate and think in such different ways that personalization has become key to realizing the internet as the infinite fountain of knowledge its prophets purported it to be…” — Volume, Archis 2015 #3

Considering the new paradigm in our learning curve and information sharing, web browsers has become not only a container for web content but a medium which observe and store all our daily activities, data, digital behaviors and etc on the web. Your web browser might know more about you than yourself. It learns from us and our data but how much do we know about it?

This semester theme is FRONT END HACKING. This theme is designed in order to study and practice different aspects of UI/UX manipulation through WEB-BROWSERs as our medium. We will observe how we experience the web by scratching the surface of web-pages to have more insightful look at the skeleton. We will learn how this technologies work and will learn how to create and develop our own tools. We will learn how to embrace WEB-BROWSERs.


Major topics and skills which will be introduced/covered:'

UI/UX design
Browser automation
Bypassing APIs (data scraping)
Browser extensions
Headless browsing
UI/UX design

Mediums and languages

Google Chrome, Firefox
Javascript, ES6

Planning and Structure

There will be 14 sessions in first semester. Which will be divided into parts; the first part which is about exploration and second part in which we will get our hands dirty and practice what we've learned. Doing so first part consists of small assignments and the second round is about one assignment. 
First part (7 weeks: Aug 29th, 2017 — Oct 10th, 2017 ) workshop sessions + short assignments
First part (7 weeks: Aug 29th, 2017 — Oct 10th, 2017 ) practice sessions + long assignment

All the sessions before autumn break will have same pattern as in each session consists of two parts:

  1. presentation time : short group presentation of last week assignment.
  2. workshop time: short lecture about the topic by Amir and then we continue with practicing the topic.

Each week detail

week #1, Aug 29, 2017: Introduction
week #2, Sep 5, 2017: UI manipulation
week #3, Sep 12, 2017: UX encode and decode
week #4, Sep 19, 2017: WEE-GAY-ing #1
Week 5 | week #5, Sep 26, 2017 ?
Week 6 | week #6, Oct 3, 2017 ?
Week 7 | week #7, Oct 10, 2017 ?
week#8 autumn break