John Maeda TED Video Response

September 27, 2009

I found John Maeda’s lecture on design and computers to be interesting. His viewpoint, coming from a seemingly un-design-related field, was both refreshing and different from my view at the same time.

Maeda’s take on computers and design was valuable to see, since he started with the purely technological side back before any sort of artistic concepts had arrived. I liked seeing the videos of his experiments, showing how he was a pioneer in transforming the technical world of computers and programs into something which could be used for art, such as with his Adobe Illustrator-like prototype program. When he described how his left-brain professors found his program useless and illogical, that showed me that he was truly determined to change things.

And yet, when he said he used technology but didn’t like it, I couldn’t help but disagree in some ways. I do agree that the more we use technology, the more disconnected we get from the humane side of ourselves, but I also try to find more of a balance and enjoy the technology for what it is and what it can do for us. When I am working in my 3D programs such as Maya or ZBrush, I marvel at the feat of technical engineering which goes on in the background of the program and genuinely appreciate these technological outlets for my creativity. They become a part of me, integrated into the balance of technology and design which I, like Mr. Maeda, always strive to perfect.

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