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Sometime to Return

Keynote scheduled at 8:30-9:20 in Memorial Hall

As we look at the hype of AI, where did it come from, what does it have to do with UX design? Turns out, the two have a lot to do with each other, starting long before the web was a twinkle in Sir Tim Berners Lee’s eye. In this talk,
I’ll blow up the history of thrilling collaborations between architects, designers, and technologists since the 1950s, future visions of what it would be like to navigate and inhabit intelligent worlds—ideas that put in place the web and how we design for it. I’ll question where we’re from as web folk and where we’re going. (Or as Dave Pirner sings in the Soul Asylum single that served as the inspiration for this talk’s title, “The hourglass is draining fast/
It knows no future holds no past/And all this too will come to pass.”)

Presented By

Molly Wright Steenson

Photo: Molly Wright Steenson

Dr. Molly Wright Steenson is a designer, author, professor, and international speaker whose work focuses on the intersection of design, architecture, and artificial intelligence. She is the author of Architectural Intelligence: How Designers and Architects Created the Digital Landscape (MIT Press, 2017), which tells the radical history of AI’s impact on design and architecture and how it poured the foundation for contemporary digital design. She cut her teeth on the web in 1994 and has since worked with groundbreaking studios, consultancies, and corporations. Dr. Steenson is an associate professor at Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Design, with a courtesy appointment in the School of Architecture. Previously, she was an assistant professor in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, adjunct faculty at Art Center in Pasadena, CA, and an associate professor at the Interaction Design Institute Ivrea in Italy. She holds a PhD in architecture from Princeton University and a master’s in architectural history from Yale. St. Paul is her hometown.

Photo credit: Ross Mantle

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