Do you believe in Users?

userscrop1_ringvorlesung_4_smallcrop1_ringvorlesung_3_smallcrop1_ringvorlesung_1_smallcrop1_hackers_WebDo you believe in Users Flyer

Flyer für die Vortragsreihe “Do you believe in Users?“, kuratiert von Olia Lialina an der Merz Akademie Stuttgart. Poster von Janick Neundorf, Leon Thau und Mutti.

Do You Believe in Users? This question, asked in the legendary 1985 movie Tron, nowadays would have to be asked with a smile, as a nostalgic remark about the days when “apps” in neon costumes competed with each other and their users in racing games — but instead it is gaining earnest relevance.

Three years ago in the introduction to the Digital Folklore Reader we asked “Do you believe in Users?” to emphasize that the personal computer must be regarded as a medium with a cultural history shaped more by its users and less by its inventors.

In this lecture series we raise the question again, for the sole purpose of reminding that computer users do actually still exist, along with their right to understand how their computers, big and small, work. This is essential in times when interaction processes got way too smooth, pleasant and invisible, when designers and developers don’t even talk about interfaces, but about emotions people (not users) should feel by experiencing (not using) their products.

We’ve invited five speakers, whose academic, artistic, curatorial and archival work make personal computer and its user visible again.

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