Designing Media, a New Book by Bill Moggridge, Explores New and Traditional Media

Release Date: 
Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Designing Media, a New Book by Bill Moggridge, Explores New and Traditional Media

Designing Media, written by the Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt Director Bill Moggridge and published by MIT Press Nov. 29, examines connections between old and new media. In his book, Moggridge describes the changing media landscape and the growth of new patterns of media consumption. The long-dominant forms—television, radio, newspapers, magazines and books—have had to respond to emergent digital media. Newspapers have interactive websites, television broadcasts over the Internet and books are published in both electronic and print editions.

“The convergence between new and traditional media is in turbulent flux, with the models for successful designs yet to be evolved,” said Moggridge. “I found it fascinating to learn from so many people who have a track record of innovation and design excellence.”

The book features interviews with 37 significant figures in traditional and new forms of mass communication, including Chad Hurley, co-founder of YouTube; Craig Newmark of Craigslist; Arthur Sulzberger Jr., publisher of The New York Times; Jimmy Wales, founder of Wikipedia; and Mark Zuckerberg, co-founder of Facebook.

“Bill’s book is an insightful and exciting look into the past and future of media and all the players involved,” said Wayne Clough, Secretary of the Smithsonian. “A legend in the world of design in his own right, Bill is breaking new ground as the director of the Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum.”

Moggridge writes about innovations in media that rely on contributions from a crowd or community: how the band OK Go built a following using YouTube, how real-time connections between dispatchers and couriers inspired Twitter, how a BusinessWeek blog became a quarterly printed supplement of the print magazine and how e-readers have evolved. In the book, Ira Glass compares the intimacy of radio to that of the Internet; the producer of PBS’s Frontline supports the program’s investigative journalism by putting documentation of its findings online and the developer of Google’s Trendalyzer software describes its beginnings as animations that accompanied lectures
about social and economic development in rural Africa. At the end of each chapter, Moggridge comments on the implications for the design of media.

Designing Media is illustrated with hundreds of color images and includes a DVD and website with excerpts from all of the interviews. Both pdfs of the chapters and QuickTimes of the interview segments can be viewed and downloaded at www.designing-media.com. Cooper-Hewitt is planning an educational panel and other public programs for the spring of 2011 and the book is currently available for sale at the Shop at Cooper-Hewitt.