Pratt Institute School of Design

Computational Narratives: Language of the interface
Siona Balaji
The digital interface is a collection of words and phrases under the umbrella of User Experience Writing or Microcopy, which help users interact with their devices intuitively. By taking on an invisible character, this language structure emerges as a contemporary form of communication between people, technology, and communities. It is an evolving genre in the digital literature, wears empathy to disguise authoritativeness, uses generative tools, multiple authors, syndicated or ready-to-print copy, which is consequential in the discussion of authorship in the age of electronic literature. Deconstructing and critically examining this language to consider what forms it will take in the future is paramount.

Deciphering words on the Interface
How does the Language on the interface and Microcopy influence the way we tell stories and user behavior? In this exploration, the cultural probe switches microcopy from the digital space and places it in a human conversation, literal sentence, and spoken language. It examines literal, symbolic associations and connotations of these words.
The Autocompletionist
The Autocompletionist is a generative writing project exploring the characteristics of the interactive texts on the digital interface. These very-short narratives are created using the Apple iOs Predictive text, iOS Notes App, Grammarly App, Google search engine, and a physical dictionary.

Microcopy in Protests
Microcopy presents itself as an invisible guide appearing powerless while stimulating instant reactions. This design exploration is built by repurposing the words and phrases through a series of protest posters, allowing the technocratic instructional narrative to take on a role advocating social justice and equality.
Conversational User Interface: Starbucks barista
This observation compares computational texts to a script-like conversation with a Starbucks cashier – Microcopy attempting to embody Empathy and mimic human-like conversations and a dialog between two humans seeming predictable and generative.
Directive conversations
The video series juxtaposes two kinds of instructional copy - one that is current and evolving and another with a historical and a physical presence.

Invisible copy
Invisible copy is an archive of words and phrases used in the digital realm. The index carries literal, figurative, emotional, and associated meanings to Microcopy and Computational writing, taking the form of a digital dictionary with multi-media examples and creating a codified body of work while deconstructing the existing system. (