SIAT - Theses, Dissertations, and other Required Graduate Degree Essays

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sensate skins: unfolding an affective responsive aesthetics

Author: 
Date created: 
2007
Abstract: 

This thesis explores responsive aesthetics in art installations?how individuals, through their senses, engage in meaningful, affective exchanges with a responsive artwork that focuses on touch and the body as the critical loci of reciprocity. Concepts drawn from multidisciplinary writings assisted in developing this responsive aesthetics: approaches to the body, lived experience, reversibility and intercorporeity from existential phenomenology; the construction of the self and sexuality from psychoanalytical theory and gender studies; models of responsivity, the relationships between haptic, visual and multimodal perception from physiology, human perception and art criticism. The construction and exhibition of a prototype haptic responsive installation, sensate skins, provided a means of embodying and exploring the multiple folds of responsivity and gathering engagent impressions on their lived experience.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
School of Interactive Arts and Technology - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (M.A.)

Understanding 'open work' in interactive art

Author: 
Date created: 
2006
Abstract: 

This paper concerns Umberto Eco's 'open work' as a methodology for Interactive Art. I examine open work in its original social and cultural contexts, and probe its potential as a methodology. Eco's 'open work' is concerned with the process of making of art rather than with any finished artwork. He posits two components of open work: a multiplicity of meanings, and audience participation. In open work, artists create artwork in a way that allows ihe audience to construct multiple meanings. This is a contingent process, and the degree of openness is the measure of its contingency. lnteractive Art's digital technology makes open work a promising methodology, but this requires two lavers of openness: contemplative (Ec:os's concept) and structural (a specific quality of lnteractive Art). And finally, open work can use computing as a creative process and can enhance the artistic goals of community and play.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
School of Interactive Arts and Technology - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Project (M.A.Sc.)

Customer e-learning

Author: 
Date created: 
2006
Abstract: 

Customers in business to business relationships are increasingly being informed about products by company web sites rather than print materials. The first research question is whether design guidelines for business to business product informati~on web sites should be developed from learning theory and instructional design concepts. The second research question is whether creators and users of web sites have similar web site perceptions and preferences. A literature review was combined with the results of a study of web site creators and users to develop design pidelines for product information web sites. This research found that creators and users of product information web sites perceive web site users as motivated to learn but that their primary objective is quick reference. Suggestions for design include considerations of time sensitivity, the need for interactive sites that adapt to user needs, collaboration facilities and multimedia. Keywords: e-learning, communities of practice, corporate web site, B2B

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
School of Interactive Arts and Technology - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (M.A.)

The design, development and assessment of an educational sports-action video game: Implicitly changing player behaviour

Author: 
Date created: 
2006
Abstract: 

Concussion education and prevention for youth hockey players has been an issue of recent concern amongst sport medicine practitioners and hockey's administrative bodies. This thesis details the design, implementation and assessment of a sports-action hockey video game that aims to reduce the aggressive and negligent behaviours that can lead to concussions. The game, termed Heads Up Hockey, was designed to modify game playing behaviour by embedding an implicit teaching mechanism within the gameplay. Educational games often suffer from the problem of indirection, that is, the content the learner is intended to learn is indirectly related to the gameplay. With Heads Up Hockey, participants were expected to learn by simply playing to win, in contrast to playing to learn. The 21 participants in the experimental learning group significantly improved their mean score on a composite behaviour indicator (p = 0.0002) compared with no significant change amongst the 21 control group participants

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
School of Interactive Arts and Technology - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (M.Sc.)

Visualizing mutations of a virus sequence

Date created: 
2012-11-09
Abstract: 

This thesis addresses a synthetic health-dataset, introduced at the IEEE VAST Challenge 2010. My research team participated in this contest to evaluate the pre-designed tool, ”IMAS” using a benchmark dataset.Learning from this contest, I designed an Information Visualization InfoVis prototype, ”FilooT” to gain a better understanding of that dataset. Following the Nested Model for Visualization Design, my thesis’ qualitative methodology consists of a design study and evaluation. To make an effective design, I followed well-cited InfoVis principles of perception and cognition. I also utilized prior knowledge produced by the proposed solutions that had been tackled the contest’s dataset. To understand the tool’s design capabilities for target domain analysts, I observed domain-users’ reactions to FilooT in a User-Experience scenario. The findings of the study indicated how analysts employ each of the visualization and interaction designs in their Bioinformatics’ task-analysis process. The critical analysis of the results inspired design informing suggestions.

Document type: 
Thesis
Supervisor(s): 
Chris Shaw
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: School of Interactive Arts and Technology
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.Sc.

Everyday design: comparing families, hobbyist jewellers, and steampunk enthusiasts

Author: 
Date created: 
2012-06-22
Abstract: 

This thesis reports on a descriptive multiple-case study that portrays the practices of three groups of everyday designers as a way to inform the design of interactive technologies. Previous research describes cases of appropriation and everyday design where people creatively transform and adapt design artifacts; however, there is still a gap in our understanding of how individuals precisely design and make things. The aim of this study is to discern the similarities and differences between the practices of the selected cases of everyday designers: family members, hobbyist jewellers, and steampunk enthusiasts. Based on the theory of practice, the analytical framework combines goals, outcomes, materials, tools, competences, and strategies to holistically describe those cases of everyday design. The findings point to a reconfiguration of how objects and technologies should be designed, but also a reflection on how designers can create materials, tools, and structures to support heterogeneous and creative design practices.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
5.1.2 Allison develops her system for piercing rose buds
4.2.4 Allison coats rose buds with epoxy
4.4.2 Claire uses hands and tools in her jewellery practice
4.4.2 Claire resources tools in her jewellery practice
4.2.3 Canine machine: M.U.T. by Christine and Mario
4.1.1 and 5.1.1 Cate explains her recipe system
5.2.1 Kerry explains the things on the stroller
4.1.1 Beck explains the system changing from day journal to public calendar
4.2.1 Lori explains the reminder system
Supervisor(s): 
Ron Wakkary
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: School of Interactive Arts and Technology
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.A.

Sacred media : immersive architecture and the aesthetics of technosacred space

Author: 
Date created: 
2012-04-30
Abstract: 

Through a principled exploration of the implications of ritual interaction, multimodal aesthetics, and computational technology in the intersection of spiritual and technological cultures, in this thesis I describe a contemporary approach to the creation of sacred space. Specifically, a multivalent aesthetic environment constituting an immersive architecture which I call the Sacred Sound Temple was presented at the Burning Man Festival in 2011, and is the subject of this exploration. When it comes to the human endeavor of grappling with the Sacred, art has always been an indispensable vehicle for the experience and expression of the Sacred. Traditional cultures frame art not simply in terms of its aesthetic dimensions, but also for its transcendental utility in binding the material realm to the intelligible realm of the Sacred. There has always been a fundamental relationship between technology and the creation of sacred art, especially within the Persian artistic tradition. In more recent times, electronic and digital media have grown to constitute an emerging technological palette with which traditional principles of art may be reinvigorated through a contemporary effort termed technosacred art. Through participatory design research, guided by traditional principles in art, this thesis charts an exploration of the symbolic and aesthetic agency of the visual, sonic, and architectonic dimensions of immersive architecture. Modes of embodied engagement within sensuous space are discussed as a form of ‘aesthetic practice’ which amalgamates with traditional modes of ritual participation. A grounded interpretation of the aesthetic and ritual dimensions of technosacred space based on hermeneutical knowledge from Sufism as well as neurotheology elucidates the relationship between aesthetic experience and the phenomenology of sacred experience. Although the design of technosacred space explores the contemporary use of technology in the design of built environments, it simultaneously expresses a foundational orientation toward the Sacred, similar to traditional modes of art. Through the interfusion of the premodern with the contemporary means, as well as the real and the virtual, this research points towards the use of art as a sacred media – a technology which mediates between our outer and inner realities and therefore reifies our sense of ‘being in the world.’

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Digital Obeisance 1 - Dome Visuals
Digital Obeisance 2 - Dome Visuals alternative
Digital Obeisance 3 - Animated Mandala
Supervisor(s): 
Diane Gromala
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: School of Interactive Arts and Technology
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.A.

The Effects of Intuitive Interaction Mappings on the Usability of Body-based Interfaces

Author: 
Date created: 
2013-01-18
Abstract: 

A key challenge with designing controls for Natural User Interfaces (NUIs) is the wide range of input actions they support along with the little affordance they have on which of these actions lead to successful system effects. In this thesis I report the findings of a comparative study between three design strategies for a whole body system. I compare the strategies on usability, intuitiveness and their ability to engage a participant about the content domain. From this study I found that while certain design approaches enhance a users’ performance completing tasks, the lack of discoverability of the interaction model left the user feeling incompetent and unsatisfied. From these findings, I discuss the role of intuition within interface design. I provide the benefits and limitations of each design along with empirically grounded guidelines on how to use the different designs to achieve a balance between usability and intuitive interaction.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
Alissa Antle
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: School of Interactive Arts and Technology
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.Sc.

Painting Time: Metaphor in creative process

Author: 
Date created: 
2013-01-14
Abstract: 

This first-person research examines the painter’s description of embodied practice. The thesis proposes that embodied descriptions of process may be found in metaphor, grounding this methodology on recent research in the cognitive unconscious and phenomenological methods of first-person access to lived experience. For the purposes of this study, I situate myself as subject, conducting a close reading and reflective examination of my painting process in order to gain insight into the essential aspects of the artist’s description of experience. The methodology investigates correlations between reflexive self-observation and its inscription in language. I use this method to provide an account of pragmatic practice. The thesis proposes a preliminary formulation of descriptors of qualitative experience that may help to inform development of interactive technologies.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
Thecla Schiphorst
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: School of Interactive Arts and Technology
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.A.

Sonic Cradle: evoking mindfulness through 'immersive' interaction design

Author: 
Date created: 
2012-11-30
Abstract: 

The present work introduces a relaxing human-computer interaction paradigm designed to foster meditative attentional patterns. After theoretically situating the project, this thesis develops a framework for media ‘immersion’ to conceptually guide the design of Sonic Cradle: a darkened chamber which suspends individuals in a comfortable hammock while they progressively control sound through their own respiration. Next, 15 co-design sessions are presented along with several resulting tweaks and improvements aimed at balancing users’ perceived sense of control.A mixed methods investigation of the iterated prototype with a purposive sample of 39 participants demonstrates how Sonic Cradle can pleasantly encourage mindful experiences by consistently inducing a calm mental clarity and loss of intention. Surprisingly, participants also reported perceptual illusions, feelings of floating, and emotional responses. Concluding discussions explain how this project breaks new ground toward fulfilling technology’s potential to experientially persuade people to adopt and psychologically benefit from contemplative practices like mindfulness meditation.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
Bernhard Riecke
Diane Gromala
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: School of Interactive Arts and Technology
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.Sc.