Adding By Leaving Out: The Power of the Pause

Presented by Liz Danzico

We tend to think of the pause as awkward. In speech, pauses connote uncomfortable silence, an issue at hand, and as communicators, we smooth over silence with fillers. We’re trained to deliver smooth speech, censoring “um” and “ah” out. As designers, as much as we value whitespace, we tend to fill it. This distaste for the pause — and the inverse seeking an always-on state — is a daily battle we face. We’re impatient with the pause, and as a result, we’re missing out on a great deal. What would happen if we become more comfortable with the pause? As it turns out, we can add by leaving out. From Edison to Underhill to web-based software, learn where the pause has power.

About Liz

Liz Danzico

Part designer, part educator, part editor — Liz currently resides in New York where she is the chairperson of the MFA in Interaction Design at the School of Visual Arts, works as an independent user experience consultant and muses on her blog, Bobulate.