Designing Architectural Interactive Design: Users’ Experiences versus Functions

By Omar M. N. Amireh.

Published by The International Journal of Architectonic, Spatial, and Environmental Design

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Fast growing, the building and architectural industry in Jordan has placed great pressure on the design industry, whether academic or professional. Besides opening student undergraduate acceptance to reach 150–210 each year in most of the 7 old schools, 8 new schools found their way to the Jordanian market. As the number of schools and students grow, shortages in academic resources grow, hence many schools reduced contact design studio hours to two thirds and devised a design students group, 3–4 on one project, which prevailed and in some schools became a normal academic practice. At the same time, schools find no time to develop their curriculums or design systems; they stick more and more to the old classical ways of design. However, change in one part and no change in another part aggravated the reliance on the old design (classical) teaching ways. Both tutors and students thought of and considered design as an exercise in solving problems where programs, solutions, and results are known from the beginning. Breaking through the long stagnant, old design process adopted in most Jordanian schools requires not only change in the ways designers handle the design problem requirements, programs, alternatives and solutions, but also the whole design course of action. Let’s not forget the stakeholder’s way of thinking as well, which includes: designers are to be involved in writing down the problem with the clients from the beginning; new concepts in design refer to architecture as a book which users can read, experience, and conceive; design concepts are devised from the users’ experiences, events, and activities and not from the space requirements, programs, and functions; and finally, designs which depend on designing successful and appropriate events, activities, and experiences are key to any successful interactive design.

Keywords: Interactive Design, Users Experience, Events, Activities

The International Journal of Architectonic, Spatial, and Environmental Design, Volume 6, Issue 2, pp.137-152. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 7.720MB).

Prof. Omar M. N. Amireh

President Consultant of Engineering Affairs, Ex-Dean, Associate Professor, Faculty of Architecture and Design, Consultations Office, Petra University, Amman, Jordan

I have been involved in architectural academia and practices since graduation in 1978 as a part-time architect and full-time teaching assistant at the University of Jordan. I worked on several design projects including: office buildings, a comprehensive school, a town growth centre, and housing estates in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. I was the technical design manager of the central Mosque, and one of two designers of the Justice Palace. Getting a scholarship from the University of Jordan, I finished my Ph.D. at the Mackintosh School of Architecture in Glasgow, Britain in 1990. As a tutor, I taught architectural theories, design, urban design, graphic, and computer aided design. In the Master program I taught several master courses, supervised 18 master theses, and was a jury member for about 25. In practice, I worked as a consultant for Zuhai Fayez Aramco Jeddah Saudi Arabia, Thuwal Sustainable Master Plan, designed a 120 bed hospital and about 25 vilas and offices in Amman, and also designed Ma’aan University Campus south of Jordan. I have attended 10 architectural conferences, published 10 papers, and participated in three international competitions, one of which was Beirut Central District Lebanon in which we reached group A out of 365 international entries.