Designing for the Future: Modern Interfaces & Emerging Technologies

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Course Dates


May 13, 2021

Course Duration


6 weeks, online
2–4 hours per week

Course Duration


As the user experience (UX) transforms and incorporates new technologies, we must rethink our interactions and infrastructure. These emerging technologies—such as Multi-touch, Virtual reality (VR), Augmented reality (AR) and Voice Interaction—are propelling us toward the next generation in human-computer interactions with no signs of slowing down.

With technologies going beyond the touchscreen, what are the implications for product and business development? How do we design digital products and user experiences that engage and immerse users in new ways? And how can we make smarter decisions about allocating the resources necessary for adopting, developing, and marketing new technologies?

Developed by NYU’s Tandon School of Engineering, this program will get you up to speed on the environment of emerging technologies as it applies to new interfaces and digital product development. Gain both historic and modern perspective on designing with emerging technologies, and a framework for how to identify opportunities, and apply human centered design approach to ideate and innovate with emerging technologies at your organization.


In 2019, 42.9 million people in the U.S. used a VR product, and 68.7 million people used an AR once monthly.

SOURCE: eMarketer


It’s estimated that 80% of emerging technologies will involve AI by 2021.

SOURCE: Gartner


By 2022, AR-based social media ads are projected to be pulling in roughly $13 billion dollars per year.

SOURCE: Tractica

Who Is This Program For?

This program was created to provide a solid understanding of the business considerations for modern interfaces and emerging technologies for product designers, product managers, creative directors and product directors in the areas of product development, product management and interactive design.

  • Product designers and design managers seeking to gain a better understanding of how product designs are evolving, stay current with the latest trends and technology related to emerging user interfaces, and learn principles and best practices around interface design and emerging technologies.
  • Creative/innovation/product/design directors looking to develop a strategy for implementing best practices related to interface design and product development with emerging technologies, better understand the impact of related privacy and security concerns, improve the user experience for their company’s products and services, and develop a mindset that drives innovation with digital tools.
  • Consultants seeking to understand the past and present landscape of digital interfaces as well as how to build good interface usability in design and develop a strategic roadmap for their clients.
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Program Highlights

  • UNDERSTAND the past and present landscape of digital interfaces
  • IDENTIFY patterns of good usability in design and apply Human Centered Design methodologies that scale with emerging technology
  • EXAMINE the emerging technologies environment relative to new interface and interaction design and product development, AR and VR, and the converging technologies and use cases driving movement in this space
  • DEVELOP a mindset that helps drive innovation with digital tools
  • CONSIDER the balance of ethics and profitability in this new era of human-computer interactions
  • DISCOVER the current environment of emerging technologies including VR, AR, Voice Interaction, Machine Learning and AI
  • SEE where emerging technologies are gaining traction in various industries through use cases that will apply to your industry and field of practice

Program Syllabus

  • Understand the past and present landscape of digital interfaces, current trends and how the evolution of interface design is important for modern and future industry innovation.

    • The history that led to today’s interfaces
    • The most important innovation
    • Design vs. science
    • How we made progress by hating our tools and their limitations
  • Identify the patterns of good usability in interface design and the human centered design approach that scales with new technology.

    • The patterns of good usability in interface design
    • Single-use tools vs. multivariate tools
    • Modern desktop computer as a super tool
    • The tragedy of skeuomorphism
    • The human centered design approach that scales with new technology
    • The business perspective on design and innovation
  • Discover the current environment of emerging technologies including musical interfaces, audio assistants, gestural interfaces, gaming systems and AR & VR.

    • Game controllers: What works and what doesn't?
    • Learn from The Failures: Apple Newton
    • Musical interfaces
    • Voice user interfaces
    • Gestural interfaces
    • Gaming (or entertainment?) systems
    • AR & VR: The business case, market trends, and moonshots
  • Learn the difference between the media then vs now, incremental steps vs moonshots and identifying tools as multivariate.

    • Just-in-time information
    • Media: then vs. now
    • Rise of the second screen
    • Incremental steps vs. moonshots
    • Thinking of tools as multivariate
  • Evaluate the balance between ethics and profitability for making new interfaces more inclusive.

    • How WIMP discriminates
    • Case Study: Tumblr and universal accessibility
    • Accessibility bias in tech products
    • The business case for making new interfaces more inclusive
    • OS security, privacy and ethics
    • Triumph of closed systems
    • Hate your tools: a second plea
    • Ethics vs. profitability
  • Understand how product designs are evolving, the impact of early AI efforts and how to use predictive technology to ascertain purchase decisions.

    • Vernor Vinge essay on singularity
    • Early AI efforts
    • AI recommendations
    • Predictive technology and purchasing decisions
    • Predictive algorithms
    • The post-humanist future
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Case Studies and Real-World Examples

Image of  a woman wearing sleek VR glasses to portray Moonshot: Google Glass

Moonshot: Google Glass

Consider two perspectives on Google’s controversial AR glasses. While initially a commercial flop, find out how this moonshot product broke new ground and continues to be a business driver.

Apple Ripple Effect

Apple Ripple Effect

Consider the incremental development of game-changing innovations like the iPod, iPhone and Siri and the influence of the Apple “ripple effect” on the market.

Image of Playstation controllers to portrayLegacy Innovation: Sony

Legacy Innovation: Sony

How has this multinational corporation created first-class products across so many product lines and categories (and decades)? Take a closer look at a company that has always prioritized innovation and teamwork between business leadership, designers and engineers.

Image of a child playing video game on screen to portrayMoonshot: The Nintendo Wii

Moonshot: The Nintendo Wii

After failing with GameCube, Nintendo needed a big win. Learn how they went all-in on gestural control and owned the game console market for a short time—and what lessons we should take from it.

Image of sparkling graphics on screen to portray Google Tilt Brush

Google Tilt Brush

Instructor Joshua Goldberg demos VR painting with Google’s Tilt Brush, a room-scale 3D-painting virtual-reality application.

Program Faculty

Joshua Goldberg

Adjunct Lecturer, NYU Tandon School of Engineering

Joshua Goldberg is a planner, developer, installer, and overseer of interactive and creative display projects and consumer applications for corporations, brands, museums, artists, and more. For nearly two decades, he has consulted with a variety of companies in the areas of show control programming.... More info

Adaora Udoji

Adjunct Professor, NYU Tisch School of the Arts: Interactive Telecommunications Program (ITP)

Adaora Udoji is an emerging technology strategist and maker. She has worked in artificial intelligence, virtual reality, augmented reality, and other new digital technologies. She is also an adjunct professor at NYU Tandon School of Engineering and the Interactive Telecommunications Program at the Tisch School of the Arts... More info



Upon successful completion of the program, participants will be awarded a verified digital certificate by NYU Tandon.

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