SIAT Faculty Publications

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Directly Interactive Design Gallery Systems: Interaction Terms and Concepts

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Abstract: 

A human-computer interface interposes objects between a person and the underlying representation with which the person interacts. Previously, we introduced two interaction objects, alternatives and their collections in an interactive design gallery. We revisit the terms, refining their definitions, and introduce the explicit notion of a “view” to accommodate multiple references to the same alternative or collection in an interface. We outline fundamental interactions over alternative and collection views. Finally, we outline a special type of collection called the Parallel Coordinate View.

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Article
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Explanation-Giving in a Collaborative Tangible Tabletop Game: Initiation, Positionality, Valence and Action-Orientation

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2017-06
Abstract: 

Explanations given to each other by 20 pairs of 5th grade children while playing a tangible tabletop sustainability game were analyzed inductively for key themes relating to their use of language, gesture and system tools. Half the pairs had been assigned roles (human development or natural resources manager) with associated system controls. Findings showed that explanations by pairs in both conditions often employed collectivist language (“we”) in conjunction with positive reflections on the game-world state using the provided Impact Tool which gave feedback while system was paused. Pairs in the roles condition also gave explanations in response to partner actions and more frequently included negative and actionoriented prospective language about what should be changed moving forward. Roles pairs additionally used questions to seek confirmation or action from their partner and made comments from the perspective of the inhabitants of the fictional world. Implications for theresearch and design of collaborative tabletop learning systems are discussed.

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Article
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Why Tangibility Matters: A Design Case Study of At-Risk Children Learning to Read and Spell

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2017-05
Abstract: 

Tangibles may be effective for reading applications. Letters can be represented as 3D physical objects. Words are spatially organized collections of letters. We explore how tangibility impacts reading and spelling acquisition for young Anglophone children who have dyslexia. We describe our theory-based design rationale and present a mixedmethods case study of eight children using our PhonoBlocks system. All children made significant gains in reading and spelling on trained and untrained (new) words, and could apply all spelling rules a month later. We discuss the design features of our system that contributed to effective learning processes, resulting in successful learning outcomes: dynamic colour cues embedded in 3D letters, which can draw attention to how letter(s) position changes their sounds; and the form of 3D tangible letters, which can enforce correct letter orientation and enable epistemic strategies in letter organization that simplify spelling tasks. We conclude with design guidelines for tangible reading systems.

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Article
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Influence of Ethnicity, Gender and Answering Mode on a Virtual Point-to-Origin Task

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2016-02
Abstract: 

In a virtual point-to-origin task, participants seem to show different response patterns and underlying strategies for orientation, such as ”turner” and ”non-turner” response patterns. Turners respond as if succeeding to update simulated heading changes, and non-turners respond as if failing to update their heading, resulting in left-right hemisphere errors. We present two other response patterns, ”non-movers” and ”spinners”, that also appear to result in failures to update heading. We have three specific goals in mind: (1) extend previous findings of higher turner rates with spatial language response mode using a point-to-origin task instead of a triangle completion task; (2) replicate the gender effect of males more likely responding as turners; (3) examine ethnicity influence. Designed as a classroom study, we presented participants (N = 498) with four passages through a virtual star field. Participants selected the direction pointing to the origin from four multiple-choice items. Response mode was either pictograms or written lan- guage, chosen to compare with similar studies and see if these response modes have an effect on virtual orientation behaviour. Results show a majority of participants (48.35%) classified as non-turners, 32.93% turners, 15.57% as non-movers, and 3.14% as spinners. A multinomial regression model reached 49% classification performance. Written spatial language, compared to pictograms, made turner response patterns more likely; this effect was more pronounced for Chinese participants and among females, but not male Caucasians. Moreover, higher turner numbers for written spatial language extends Avraamides findings of higher turner numbers when participants turned their bodies toward the origin but not when they responded verbally. Using pictorial response mode (i.e., top-down picture of a head) may have increased cognitive load because it could be considered more embodied. It remains to be seen how we can reduce the reference frame conflict that might have caused increased cognitive load. Second, our results are inconsistent with previous research in that males overall did not show more turner behaviour than females. Future research may look at possible underlying factors, such as cultural norms. Third, individualistic cultures (Caucasians) [Greif, 1994] lean towards turner response patterns, whereas collectivist cultures lean towards non-turner response patterns.

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Article
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[Re]Activating Mama Pina's Cookbook

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2017-07
Document type: 
Article
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"¿Cosas de Mujeres?" Feminist Networks of Collaboration in 1970s Mexico

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2013-09-28
Abstract: 

As second wave feminisms emerged throughout the world, diverse collectives and consciousness-raising groups were established in Mexico City as early as 1971. These activities gave rise to various networks of female artists who explored and politicized conceptions of the female body, making inroads in photography, performance, film and conceptual art. In this paper, I discuss the network established by Ana Victoria Jiménez, Rosa Martha Fernández and Mónica Mayer, who produced collaborative films and performances. Using gender as category of analysis, I discuss how their practices destabilized the patriarchal structures that governed art institutions in the city and defined parameters of art- making while simultaneously disrupting hegemonic visual conventions.

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Article
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Comparing Leaning-Based Motion Cueing Interfaces for Virtual Reality Locomotion

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2017-03-18
Abstract: 

In this paper, we describe a user study comparing five different locomotion interfaces for virtual reality locomotion. We compared a standard non-motion cueing interface, Joystick (Xbox), with four motion cueing interfaces, NaviChair (stool with springs), MuvMan (sit/stand active stool), Head-Directed (Oculus Rift DK2), and Swivel Chair (everyday office chair with leaning capability). Each interface had two degrees of freedom to move forward/backward and rotate using velocity (rate) control. The aim of this mixed methods study was to better understand relevant user experience factors and guide the design of future locomotion interfaces. This study employed methods from HCI to provide an understanding of why users behave a certain way while using the interface and to unearth any new issues with the design. Participants were tasked to search for objects in a virtual city while they provided talk-aloud feedback and we logged their behaviour. Subsequently, they completed a post-experimental questionnaire on their experience. We found that the qualitative themes of control, usability, and experience echoed the results of the questionnaire, providing internal validity. The quantitative measures revealed the Joystick to be significantly more comfortable and precise than the motion cueing interfaces. However, the qualitative feedback and interviews showed this was due to the reduced perceived controllability and safety of the motion cueing interfaces. Designers of these interfaces should consider using a backrest if users need to lean backwards and avoid using velocity-control for rotations when using HMDs.

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Article
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Feminizing Oswald De Andrade’s Manifesto Antropófago and Vasconcelo’s Raza Cosmica : The Videos of Sonia Andrade and Pola Weiss.

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2016-03-30
Abstract: 

The term 'mestizaje' has been broadly used to denote the hybrid nature of Latin American cultures. Two of the most notable engagements with hybridity came from the Mexican José Vasconcelos' La Raza Cósmica (1925) and the Brazilian Oswald de Andrade's Manifesto Antropófago (1928). Both of these modernist intellectuals developed a strategy to resist western colonial domination and to embrace a unique culture that blended multiple histories, ethnicities, cosmologies, and practices. This paper addresses how, in the 1970s, Brazilian video artist Sonia Andrade (b. 1935) and Mexican video artist Pola Weiss (b. 1947-1990) cannibalize and embody Andrade and Vasconcelos' manifestos from a feminized perspective. Following the work of the Chilean critic Nelly Richard, feminization is understood as a process that breaks down the barriers of biological determinism and fixed symbolic roles, becoming thus a practice of continued contestation which is not only relevant to those who define themselves as women but also to a multitude of experience that contest normative and fixed definitions of sex, race or ethnicity. From this perspective, we also position Andrade and Weiss' work as part of a meaningful dialogue with those Chicana scholars who feminized the concept of mestizaje during the second half of the twentieth century.

Most famously, by the mid 1980s, Chicana scholars Gloria Anzaldúa and Chela Sandoval re-engaged with the concept of mestizaje to theorize their experiences as mixed-queer-third-world feminists of color in the United States. In particular, Anzaldúa's new mestiza consciousness, which stressed the potential of crossbred, queer and indigenous peoples to propose a new angle of vision, namely a new critical way of challenging the binary structures imposed by western patriarchy, became foundational for the development of Chicana scholarship. Anzaldúa's new mestiza consciousness went beyond biological definitions of mestizaje; she defined a holistic epistemology as "a more whole perspective, one that includes rather than excludes." Building from Anzaldúa's work, Sandoval proposed an oppositional consciousness as a way to explore "affinities inside of difference." Sandoval's oppositional methodology describes a set of strategies that seek to build bridges and trace affinities between the work of what he calls "postcolonial US third-world feminist criticism" and canonical western postmodern cultural theorists in order to put an end to "academic apartheid." Indeed, Sandoval's work is central to Donna Haraway's Manifesto for Cyborgs (1985), the foundational text for the development of cyborg feminism. For Haraway, the cyborg is a hybrid between organism and machine, "a matter of fiction and lived experience that changes what counts as women's experience in the late twentieth century." Significantly, one of the central objectives of Haraway's Manifesto for Cyborgs is a broader political project aimed at transgressing boundaries and undoing the dualisms and essentialisms of those dominant intellectual and cultural traditions that dictate the construction of hierarchies of difference.

However, it is noteworthy that in the chicana-feminist-queer-cyborg-third-world re-engagement with the concept of mestizaje/cyborg, the voices and experiences of Latin American women from the South are excluded. Consequently, this paper seeks to address this omission by discussing two emblematic videos by Sonia Andrade, Sem título (1975) and Pola Weiss, Somos Mujeres (1978) respectively, while situating the artists and their works in geo-historical and socio-politico-cultural contexts. In doing so, we collaboratively map diverse re-engagements with the concept of mestizaje (including hybrids of self and technology) developed by Latin American women as a critique of dominant social structures. And, in the spirit of Chela Sandoval's search for commonalities of strength and affinity, this paper seeks to find those commonalities of strength and affinity among women in the Americas who feminized the concept of mestizaje during the second half of the twentieth century.

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Article
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Imagining the Cyborg in Náhuatl: Reading the Videos of Pola Weiss

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2015-10-20
Abstract: 

By 1985, when Donna Haraway's essay, "A Manifesto for Cyborgs: Science, Technology and Socialist-Feminism in the 1980s," presented the cyborg as a hybrid between organism and machine and an alternative model of feminine subjectivity, the Mexican independent media producer Pola Weiss had been challenging normative female experiences and relations between self and technology through her video work for nearly a decade. In this article, I propose to explore Weiss's work through the lens of Haraway's in order to collaborate with recent efforts to locate Weiss's practice more meaningfully in the histories of media arts. By placing particular attention on Weiss's conceptualization of her camera as a hybrid coupling between organism and machine, I use Haraway's Manifesto for Cyborgs to suggest a frame in which to understand Weiss's practice as critique of the dominant intellectual traditions and conventions of representation that have produced and reproduced hierarchies of race, class, sex, and gender difference in exico. In doing so, I also explore how Weiss's experiments with televisual images challenged normative female experiences and relations between self and technology. Ultimately, in proposing Haraway's work as a vehicle through which to understand the work of Weiss, I also seek to find affinities between the two women as they inhabited parallel worlds and shared similar concerns.

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Article
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Lyssna: a design fiction to reframe food waste

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2016-06
Abstract: 

In this paper we propose the design fiction, Lyssna, a diegetic prototype in the form of a hearing aid for your refrigerator that aims at reintegrating lost aspects of food. Lyssna is based on home studies of food practices informed by Mediation Theory and Theories of Practice. Our aim is to explore an alternative framing from behavioral theories for designing for food waste. In the process, we hope to open up the design space for enabling reconfigurations of everyday food practices.

Document type: 
Article