1 Speculative design, for me is all about an attitude of mind. It is driven by the desire to explore and question possible futures while having the self-awareness to consider the human at the centre of design.
I grew up in a generation that can remember men landing on the Moon, we listened to the music of Ziggy and dreamt about a future and things that did not yet exist. Whether it was because I was young, but that future seemed a long way ahead, it was both beguiling but somehow disconnected from everyday life. The futures that stuck with me were the ones about people; they may have been living in futuristic worlds and driving flying cars, but their hopes, motivations and desires were essentially the same as mine. These were the futures that spoke to me then and continue to do so now.
2 The real strength of speculative design lies in its ability to create narratives that challenge our preconceptions about products and services and their role in everyday life. By locating these visions in familiar, while at the same time slightly ambiguous settings, speculative design has the power to make us stop and think, it can present us with narratives that subvert and twist our expectations of the future and subsequently our understanding of the present.
We appear to live in a world where anything is already possible, at least from a technological perspective, so perhaps it is up to speculative design and the visions it creates, to restore our sense of wonder at what just might be possible.
3 One that helps us all to understand that the people we see and read about, who are facing exceptional challenges and hardships, are ordinary peoplethey have the same hopes and dreams as you and me and that design is just one way of demanding that better world for us all.