I am currently involved in a number of projects involving blockchain-based applications, and for those of you that know a little bit about them, the platform or algorithms used are designed in a way so that all transactions are open and publicly available to access, as well as being handled by a distributed network on an agreed process.

I think one of the implication is that there will be a lot more information that will be visible, and this is where I believe big data and business intelligence will really come into its own in terms of user interfaces specifically designed for this purpose.

I believe that the two trends expected to become more important for blockchain-based applications are:

  • interface design to handle with big data, especially in terms of volume and variety of data
  • interface design to handle identity and exchange of information online leading to new interaction patterns

What other potential changes to interface design do you think is relevant to the new digital economy and applications that will follow?


The use of conversational UI as a way to sort and filter large amounts of data could help. Also predictive UI in terms of showing people what they need to see at the right time. It's a very excting time for Blockchain technology and it has the potential to disrupt current UI patterns and conventions significantly.

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  • How does conversational UI in sorting/filtering large data sets related to blockchain technology design pattern changes? I understand that there is a need to process more data (which is related to big data in general), and predictive UI requiring improvements in AI (which is related to machine learning in general) will also be important. How does a decentralized system like blockchain affect interface design in your opinion? – Michael Lai Dec 23 '17 at 1:56

Here are some of technologies that will completely disrupt UI and UX making a big part (if not all) of screen interaction obsolete.

  • Natural Language Processing
  • Pattern Recognition
  • Augmented Reality
  • Brain–computer Interface (Neural-control Interface?)
  • Some interactions will be replaced by AIs (Feature Synthesis)

Big Data and Block-chain by themselves will not bring fundamental changes to UI.

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  • I think big data does bring fundamental changes to UI design because new ideas and techniques for the display and presentation of large volumes of real-time data will become important. I also think blockchain technology that reduces the level of uncertainty and distrust, and which promotes open and transparent transactions on the web will remove the need for trusted agents so direct and peer-to-peer interface designs will become important. – Michael Lai Dec 23 '17 at 1:54
  • "Big Data" is not like a giant spreadsheet. Imagine 10 million medical records, the only way to make sense of it, is to use machine learning algorithms to analyse it and visualise the data. But "Augmented reality" is adding a hole lot of new technologies, 360 View, layers (from 2D to 3D), real time data, procedural graphics, use of NLP ... a brief description of new things UX architects have to learn :) – Garik Dec 25 '17 at 1:41

A distributed system doesn't have to blockchain-based. The right word in here is: decentralized. In a truly decentralized system a peer is disconnected from the entire world (no central servers). The designer must design for a setting when the app goes offline. http://offlinefirst.org/ is a nice starting point.

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One article written recently talks about four different aspects relating to designing for the blockchain:

  1. Know your user As blockchain apps and platforms reach mass adoption, designers need to consider their shifting user base from technical/power users to everyday people.

  2. “Design for trust” “The user should always know what is happening, what just happened, and what will happen next.”

  3. Account for processing time Because transactions on blockchain take dramatically longer than in a centralized network — it currently takes about ten minutes to confirm a bitcoin transaction — users need information on their status and progress during this time.

  4. Call attention to one-way doors Blockchain transactions are irreversible once they’ve been validated by the network — there’s no tolerance for typos — so designers need to create points of friction for users before they pass through one-way doors.

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