Sebastian Deterding

Sebastian Deterding is a user experience designer and researcher.

As a contemporary of past UX London speakers Stephen Anderson and Dan Lockton, we’ve been following Sebastian’s work for some time. In fact we’ve devoured every presentation he’s ever posted on his site and have rated every one of them highly. We finally got to see Sebastian speak in person at Playful 2010 and he did not disappoint. So we couldn’t wait to have him speak at one of our events.

If you’ve not come across Sebastian’s work before, he’s a UX designer who specialises in Persuasive and Gameful Design. However, unlike many who have jumped on the gamification bandwagon, Sebastian has taken an extremely considered and intellectual approach to the subject, dismissing the snake oil salesmen and focusing instead on the true value that gameful design can bring. Always an eloquent speaker, he’s one of those people who makes you feel smarter after spending an hour in his company. So we’re delighted to welcome him to the UX London stage.

Magic Pixie Wonder Dust 3000 (Enterprise Edition): Designing for Playful Experiences


What can user experience design really learn from games and play?

‘Gamification’ is: hot, hyped, oversold, misunderstood, unavoidable, a buzzword, a question mark, a quick fix, a huge unfulfilled potential. In the past two years, the notion of infusing products and services with elements from games and play to make them more engaging has been stirring up the digital industries. Multiple vendors have sprung up that sell gamification as a ‘turnkey solution’ to human motivation, and ‘gamification gurus’ are littering the online airwaves like ‘social media experts’ in days of yore.

In this talk, you will learn why ‘engagement’ is bullshit; why there are no architecturalisation gurus (and soon will be no gamification ones), but designing for motivation is here to stay; why the products and services we build are often way too game-like anyhow (and how to change that); and what we as user experience designers can really take from games and play.

Reasons to attend

  • 1Spend 3 whole days improving your UX skills
  • 2Meet your peers and share new ways of thinking
  • 3See world class speakers from the UX industry

"I came. I listened. I stayed. Great event, great crowd, great venue. Learn, network, enjoy."

Don Norman Speaker at UX London 2009