Extended dumb fun

Jason Fried has a decent take on the new Apple personal party glasses, the Vision Pro, in terms of it being (so he reckons) about seeing things. It’s about the point of view (POV). You could see how a sculptor sculpts because you’re looking with him. From his point of view. This is okay. But Matt Webb has way better thinking, which is fart apps.

Way back when interaction design was a field of excitement and technology that still held a modicum of promise of fun, apps were everywhere. And because they were everywhere, there was tons of room to have really fun and dumb ones. Drinking a beer or farting noises. All apps on your phone. Dub sires for f’s sake. In your pocket ready at a moment’s notice. Beautiful. Dumb, frivolous and fun. Nobody was trying to change the world with any of this shit. I know I didn’t with AL:RM. It was opening of application to getting it in those three seconds. It was beautiful. Phones are easy and quick and don’t require being alone with a thing on your head. And this is the problem.

But then I saw this app which lets you see the Matrix which is good, dumb fun. Most importantly, it’s short. That’s it. But there needs to be thousands of these out already, and because you have to put the equivalent of the phone on your face with this, it has to work by yourself, which is less fun and gets less laughs. Maybe you and a friend do the FartVision app together? Then you have to schedule that? I suppose my problem is that the ergonomics of this thing do not lend itself to frivolous fun with friends. Its interaction model doesn’t lend itself to giggling with your coworker. It doesn’t, to my knowledge, do the Lord’s work, and enable pints after work.

Maybe it’s that whole twilight of my life dropping on me like a bag of hammers or something, but designers of devices in general need to not just think a lot about patience and time, which I’m not sure is happening here. But these dumb moments of freedom we grab back to our lives from all the bullshit we slog through everyday matter. It matters to just smile at something of no consequence except to have that moment when nothing really matters all that much.