1. How would you describe
what you are doing in connection with design and programming?
I'm a project
manager in a small software company specializing in intranet, internet
application and web site design and programming (ui42).
2. Did you study this specialisation? If so, where? Did your school prepare
you for this specialisation or did you study on your own?
I've got master
degree in computer science in Faculty of Math and Physics of
Comenius University in Bratislava, Slovakia. My study was too theoretical,
but Internet was only starting at that time on the other side ;-)
3. I'm collecting examples of studios/ projects where programming is used
in cooperation with design. Examples: John Maeda @ Media Laboratory of
the MIT, his students, Letterror, Typerware, etc. Is anyone else dealing
with the issues that are important/influential for you? If so, why do
you admire them?
MK: You must include Donald Knuth www-cs-faculty.stanford.edu/~knuth/
in your list. He is an author of TeX - typesetting program known by most
of mathematicians, computer and other scientists. TeX was for my generation
of programmers the very first introduction to world of type. You definitely
must ready a story of why and how was TeX created. His books about programming,
typesetting and TeX are simply classic.
4. How did you start
with programming, and what was the main motivation to learn it? Which
language did you choose and why?
MK: Simple answer: in 1986, pure curiosity which
became an obsession and finally a profession. Language was BASIC, at that
time the only accessible for masses in Slovakia (ZX Spectrum, ATARI, PMD,
5. In your opinion
is it necessary to become a programmer if the concept of the project requires
writing a programme? What are your experiences?
MK: Hard to tell since I was a programmer, but in my opinion it is not
a must. Open, analytical mind and average computer skills should be enough.
6. How do you see
yourself, more a designer or programmer? As a designer, do you feel some
restrictions/limits of software you are using and can you give me some
examples? If you are a programmer, how do you collaborate with designers?
Does it influence your work in some specific way?
do not feel like an artist at all. I work with graphic designers quite
often (web sites design) but I feel like we are not having the common
language. I have respect for creativity of designers but I miss usability
in their concepts. Form is mostly more important for them than function.
They do not know very much about User Interface and Usability.
Self-made programs seem to bring a 'game' aspect to graphic design life?
How did you use programming knowledge in both 'for fun' and commissioned
projects? Are your projects published on the internet? If so, where? (URL)
What about the computer aesthetics? Do you attempt to reconcile the contrast
between the natural and technological looks of your results? How?
Are you attracted to exploit the programming in order to help the computer
become more 'human' or 'emotional' (to simulate our 5 senses)? What are
But I miss the proper interfaces to programs and computers. Starting from
simple navigation on web sites to speech recognition project, which is
- in Space Odyssey: 2001 HAL was able to speak - it was sci-fi at that
- in 1995 there was the first commercial speech recognition software on
the market in the UK,
- in 2001 I don't know personally anyone using any speech recognition.
10. Can everyone learn how to create a programme?
python.org gives the programming language and manuals for free for anyone
anyone, but the level of programming will be different for different people.
Not all languages are suitable for everyone.
Will you be developing your programming knowledge in your future practice?
Do you have any plans in relation to the 'D + P' issues?
at work (being a project manager), more at home (being a father and looking
for lego mindstorms).