Glossary » interaction design
the design of how a user communicates, or interacts, with a computer. Interaction designers focus on the flow of interaction, the dialog between person and computer, how input relates to output, stimulus-response compatibility, and feedback mechanisms.
This is in contrast to a visual designer, who may be trained in designing visualizations for static media but not necessarily in the dialog which is present in all interactive media. A “visual interaction designer” is a visual designer with interaction design skills. Interaction design is also in contrast to information architecture – an information architect looks at the organization of information to make the structure of a complex system easy to conceptualize and navigate, but is not usually focused, for instance, on low-level interactions. For example, an information architect may design the structure of an entire website, but not have as much interest in the design of individual pages and how users interact with forms and other controls.