6-8 September 2017, McGrath Centre, St. Catharine's College

Opening the door: an exploration of design for transcendent user experience

A 60 minute Workshop by:

Elizabeth Buie

Sigma Consulting Solutions Ltd

Alastair Somerville

Sensory UX

Slides from session

The slides used for this session are available to download from here.

About this Workshop

Experiences of wonder, awe and transcendence cannot easily be described in words; they cannot be planned or anticipated - only invited. Designing to support them, therefore, cannot use the direct approaches of classic UX methods but requires instead an oblique approach. We have to use new methods.

Elizabeth Buie and Alastair Somerville will offer participants in this workshop a fairly early look at some exciting new tools and techniques aimed at supporting this breathtaking new area of practice. Elizabeth developed these tools at Northumbria University’s School of Design, as part of her PhD research on design for transcendent user experience (TUX).

This collaborative workshop will give participants the opportunity to experience a preview of these emerging design tools and to help shape them for the future of interaction. It will provide the first look at these tools south of Manchester and east of San Francisco.

About the Speakers

Elizabeth Buie

A researcher and UX consultant based in the UK, Elizabeth has returned “home” to UX practice after having crossed the pond to do a PhD in design research. With three-plus decades in industry, Elizabeth has contributed to the UX of websites, social media applications, kiosks and air-traffic control systems, supporting audiences as broad as the worldwide public and as narrow as spacecraft controllers.

Recognised for her work on government system usability and on interactions between UX practice and academic research, Elizabeth is adapting academic techniques to UX practice. These range from direct approaches such as qualitative content analysis to oblique approaches such as design games and design fiction.

Elizabeth’s PhD explored design to facilitate transcendent experiences, for which she created a design game and four forms of design fiction. Her topic was ignited by an experience she had whilst using music technology to learn a piece of Renaissance sacred polyphony.


Alastair Somerville

Alastair Somerville provides specialist advice on cognition, which means making user-centered design for public organisations and companies who provide both physical and digital products.

He facilitates workshops on sensory and emotional design for corporations, including Google, and conferences, including South by Southwest (SxSW), Interaction17 and O'Reilly Design.


Tickets are available now


See the full programme