Behaviors, Interactions, and Frameworks

Phrases like “behavior design” and “interaction design” have come into vogue, and while those of us in the field know what they mean, they can be unintentionally deceptive to those who aren’t familiar with our work.

We don’t design behaviors — only the frameworks in which they take place.

We don’t design interactions — only the frameworks in which they take place.

It’s a purely semantic difference, but the work we do as UX and UI professionals is already so misunderstood, it’s better if we don’t convolute things further. We don’t design behaviors or interactions; we design systems and processes which encourage or facilitate them. Good design reduces the friction to those behaviors and interactions, encouraging what we want to encourage and discouraging what we want to discourage.