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How 'Minority Report' has distorted our vision of interface design

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Minority Report iconic head shot
Minority Report iconic head shot

It's been more than a decade since Minority Report hit theaters, but its influence on product design doesn't seem to have waned — much to the dismay of designers like Christian Brown. In a recent piece for the Awl, Brown bemoans Steven Spielberg's disproportionate influence on interface design, arguing that Minority Report's futuristic vision has fueled misguided dreams of gesture-based and touchscreen interfaces that don't really add much to a product's function — "interfaces that look good, rather than... work well."

"Human hands and fingers are good at feeling texture and detail, and good at gripping things—neither of which touch interfaces take advantage of," Brown writes. "The real future of interfaces will take advantage of our natural abilities to tell the difference between textures, to use our hands to do things without looking at them."