Richard Banks

Principal Design Manager at Microsoft Research Cambridge (MSR)

Principal Design Manager, Microsoft Research Cambridge

Richard Banks is Principal Design Manager in Microsoft Research’s Cambridge lab. Working as part of the Human Experience & Design group, he collaborate with social scientists and computer scientists in the lab, on a broad range of projects that span device development, community engagements, gestural interaction and more.

He is author of “The Future of Looking Back”, a book which focuses on new digital legacies and the impact they’ll have on how we reminisce about our lives. He is an honorary professor of design for the University of Dundee, a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and external examiner for Edinburgh University’s Design Informatics course.

Richard's current work focuses on the design of new user experiences for people’s everyday lives. Life is complex, often frantic and nuanced, and traditional software and technology solutions don’t usually fit smoothly into it. Richard's team is looking at ways in which technology can fit into the complexities of life, rather then insisting on the reverse.

Richard is very interested in thinking about the long-term impact of technology in our lives, and particularly about living with our digital things for 30 or 40 years, potentially passing them down through the generations, as we do with physical things. He calls this topic "Technology Heirlooms", and he has written extensively about it in his book.