Chapter 14. Elements of Interactions

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Elements of Interactions

Most often, teams show each other interfaces. They point at sketches and wireframes and prototypes and describe what the user sees or does. For everything the user sees, they do something. The user interacts with the interface. See something. Do something.

An interaction model steps away from the interface to map what a user sees and does. Interaction models capture how a user interacts with an interface over time. Because interaction models show the user, what they see, and what they do over a period of time, interaction models answer three questions:

  • What are the different parts of the interaction?
  • How do the different parts affect each other?
  • How do we move the user from one part to another?

Interaction models freeze time, so you can examine individual scenes from any angle and understand how the user moves from scene to scene. Freezing time helps your team understand the full scope of the project. Interaction models also let you identify the highest-value areas of an experience and reveal conversion points that create maximum value.

In this chapter, we’ll tear apart interaction models and learn what they’re made of. Your team will use interaction models to build better experiences, and you’re going to help them.

Three Types of Interaction Models

Interaction models come in many flavors (Figure 14-1):

  • Scenarios
  • Use cases
  • User flows
  • Task flows
  • Screen flows
  • Storyboards
  • Prototypes
  • Service blueprints
  • User ...

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