Professional Biography

by Vikram

It’s kind of difficult to describe what I do, but there are two main thrusts:

New Media: you can understand New Media as an innovative media that generates experiences using all the possible divergent media, expertise and emerging technologies; which in other words means I can create installations, exhibition spaces, multimedia, websites, virtual environments, and much more. Experiential participation and user delight is what it’s all about.Read more here.

Interaction Design: since New Media projects are hard to come by, Interaction design is my primary pursuit. It primarily deals with the facilitation of communication between any number of entities. This communication can be between humans, computer to human, computer to computer, etc. Interaction design also acts as a kind of gamekeeper in such communication deciding how the communication takes place, why should it take place, who can interrupt whom, when, etc. In other words, I specialize in the organization and sequencing of information, primarily on a computer screen, in response to user input. User Interface design and a pinch of programming/prototyping fall under this line of work.

The running theme in most of my work is – people. I tend to be draw towards projects that have the potential of social change and most of my work reflects that. I try to blend the artistic and technical side of my education in my projects. I had my undergrad education in Information Technology and currently I am in the final leg of my post-graduation in New Media design.My projects tend to involve both these aspects, though I plan/want to steer completely towards design (art) and systems thinking.

Prior to joining National Institute of Design, in 2003, for my design education I had my design firm “Mavericks” specializing in web design (yeah right) and multi-media. In fact I was about to become a career journalist when NID happened. However I try to use this experience and my journalistic zeal in the kind of projects that I do and want to do.

Further detailsI’m a New Media Designer. In other words, I am skilled in creating interactive environments & unique user experiences. Information Technology being the corner stone of New Media, I am also very good in making technology work for me – at least most of the time! In fact this is what I’ve been doing since 1989 when I first laid my hands on a “BBC Micro Computer” in school.

My educational background is slightly unusual in that I have a first class degree in computer sciences and for a while I steered towards Media and Journalism and finally settled for post graduation in New Media design.

There is an interesting story of how I got into the field of design. Prior to joining NID, I considered my self as a hard core system programmer totally incapable of any thing “arty”. My idea of design, like many, was drawing, sketching and fashion. However, in the final year of my graduation degree, in an attempt to do something different, I along with a friend made a multi-media CD-ROM to promote our batch for campus placements. Though I primarily acted as a Macromedia Director/lingo programmer it was some thing that really caught my fancy. From then on I started doing other such projects. So when that same friend got into NID and suggested that I join too, I just followed and I have never regretted it!

In the mean time I also prepared to join mass communication and journalism courses, thought NID happened first. While I was not in NID, I did several websites and multi-media projects for organizations like National Council for Promotion of Urdu language, National Technical Manpower Information System, Banarsidas Chandiwala Sewa Samarak Trust, Hamdard University, etc. While I was doing all this I was also reassessing my goals and realized the reason I got into computers at all was because I wanted to do new and exciting thing. This was not possible sitting in front of a computer all day doing corporate multi-media presentations, websites, etc. I needed to find my own voice, perhaps that’s why I wanted to change fields and join journalism. Good thing NID happened as I, pretty much, got to do what I wanted to.

On the hind sight I realize that I always wanted to be pro active and bring about positive change. In my graduation years besides doing wacko things like making hacking tools and playing weird computer games, I was the founding member of Hamdard University’s multimedia development cell, member of delegations, sent across county, to promote our university, etc.

My current focus is to do get into Interaction design and New Media projects head on (besides nurturing my latest passion – photography). I want to do projects that have a “sense of mission” and aim to make a difference. I would love to work with/for people who get that.

Vikram Singh
New Delhi, Friday, January 05, 2007

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