DMA 104 - Design Futures / Spring 2014


Syllabus / Assignments


Desma 104 Spring 2014

Thursdays 2-4:50pm
Broad 2100A


Peter Lunenfeld

Design | Media Arts Department

Office: 4252 Broad Art Center
E-mail: lunenfeld +

Personal Website:

Office Hours: Thurs. 12:00-1:00


Peter Rand

Office Hours: Tues/Wed 3pm-4pm Untitled Cafe

John Brumley




  • Midterm Assignment

  • The Class:

    This course offers a critical examination of design practice and theory, incorporating historical as well as speculative methodologies. We will cover a multitude of disciplines, but maintain an emphasize on communication design. We will be doing cross-cultural and transmedia analyses concentrating on 20th century highlights of design and 21st century experiments and movements. We will be considering how various design practices and techniques related to each other across cultures and media.

    The class will be involved in “nowcasting,” a meteorological term that we will appropriate to think about design and society at the start of the 21st century. There are always more data points about the present than there are about the future, and that determining what is happening in the middle of a storm is orders of magnitude more computationally intense than forecasting what the next weather event might be. As we look at design our interest in nowcasting is less meteorological than it is metaphorical. We should be able to develop nowcasting as distinct from but related to everything from cool hunting to surveillance, and use the concept to open new spaces for critical analyses of technology and culture.