Method Podcast, Episode 9

UX designer Josh Lovejoy talks about designing Google Clips, and the future of AI-powered products

In this episode, Aidan Simpson interviews UX Designer Josh Lovejoy on the design process behind the Google Clips camera, building user trust in ‘magical’ products, and using UX to help people feel more in the moment. The duo also discuss the important role of designers in creating AI products based in human-centered thinking, and how failure can be used to demonstrate a new technology's capabilities. Learn more about the journeys and creative decisions of designers at Google by subscribing to the Method podcast on Google PlayiTunesRSS, or Spotify.

A few highlights:

On the human needs that this smart camera addresses,5:20 “We wanted to build intentionally toward answering the question: What is memorable? And how can we use technology to help people feel more in the moment?"

On why Google Clips still has a photo-capture button and how it instills trust, 6:35 “We hemmed and hawed and ultimately decided the initial version wouldn't have a button. But then as we iterated over time, we found [a button helped build] that bonding relationship between the user and a new technology.”

On the importance of imperfection, 8:26 “When we tried to get perfect, it was actually really problematic. An important breakthrough was understanding even when we hit that sweet spot—when all the moments were 'good'—users believed we must've missed something. [Showing more images so that users could delete them] made a huge difference in confidence-level because they got to have the final say.”

On the potential of human-centered, AI-powered products,10:22 “If we can get over some of these myths about technology, its omniscience or its neutrality, or its magic, and instead really think deeply about who we want to be—I think we're capable of unlocking a renaissance of personal expression and human connection.”

The Google Clips camera, attached to the handle of a toy held by a young child. "There's a core fleetingness about our experience—life passing you by quickly—that gets dialed up to 11 when you become a parent," says Lovejoy.

Josh Lovejoy is a Seattle-based User Experience Designer in Google’s Experimental Design Group, where he works at the intersection of product design, ethics, and artificial intelligence. Josh also leads UX for People + AI Research (PAIR), a Google initiative to conduct fundamental research, invent new technology, and create frameworks for design in order to drive a humanistic approach to artificial intelligence.