SIAT Faculty Publications

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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

Behind the Lens: A Visual Exploration of Epistemological Commitments in HCI Research on the Home

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

 

 In this pictorial, we propose an alternative approach to investigating human-computer interaction (HCI) researchers’ epistemological commitments in research on the home. While researchers’ commitments can be discussed through textual aspects of their research, in this pictorial we conduct a pattern analysis of visual elements as a productive way to further inquire into such kinds of commitments. By analyzing visual elements from 121 works in HCI research on the home, we identify seven types of observers, which can be associated with epistemological commitments in research. We also propose two new complementary observers: the absent observer and the protagonist observer.

Document type: 
Article

Productive Frictions: Moving from Digital to Material Prototyping and Low-Volume Production for Design Research

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

In this paper we discuss the low-volume production of an interaction design research product known as the tilting bowl. The form of the tilting bowl was designed with 3D modeling tools and utilized digital fabrication for rapid prototyping. The final form was produced in a small number of glazed ceramic forms with embedded electronics and actuators. We focus on the lessons we learned from the challenges and design opportunities that arose in moving from digital processes to ceramic processes. We reflected on these lessons and developed thematic notions we refer to as frictions. These include shifting constraints, naïve expertise, manual automation, and dynamic materiality. The contributions of this paper are new design insights into the combination of digital and material processes for studio based prototyping and low-volume production and adds to the emerging relevance of digital fabrication, physical fabrication, and physical materials to interaction design and HCI research.

Document type: 
Article

Living In A Prototype: A Reconfigured Space

Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2016-05
Abstract: 

In this paper, we present a twenty-three months autobiographical design project of converting a Mercedes Sprinter van into a camper van. This project allows us to investigate the complexities and nuances of a case where people engage in a process of making, transforming and adapting a space they live in. This example opens a radically different and productive context for revisiting concepts that are currently at the center of human-computer interaction (HCI) research: ubiquitous computing, home automation, smart homes, and the Internet of Things. We offer six qualities characterizing the evolving relationship between the makers and the lived-in environment: the van. We conclude with a discussion on the two themes of living in a reconfigured home and prototype qualities in a reconfigured space, and a critical reflection around the theme of the invariably unfinished home.

Document type: 
Article

From Research Prototype to Research Product

Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2016-05
Abstract: 

Prototypes and prototyping have had a long and important history in the HCI community and have played a highly significant role in creating technology that is easier and more fulfilling to use. Yet, as focus in HCI is expanding to investigate complex matters of human relationships with technology over time in the intimate and contested contexts of everyday life, the notion of a ‘prototype’ may not be fully sufficient to support these kinds of inquiries. We propose the research product as an extension and evolution of the research prototype to support generative inquiries in this emerging research area. We articulate four interrelated qualities of research products—inquiry-driven, finish, fit, and independent—and draw on these qualities to describe and analyze five different yet related design research cases we have collectively conducted over the past six years. We conclude with a discussion of challenges and opportunities for crafting research products and the implications they suggest for future design-oriented HCI research.

Document type: 
Article

A Short Guide To Material Speculation: Actual Artifacts For Critical Inquiry

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

Speculative and fictional approaches have long been implemented in human-computer interaction and design techniques through scenarios, prototypes, forecasting, and envisionments. Recently, speculative and critical design approaches have reflectively explored and questioned possible, and preferable futures in HCI research. We propose a complementary concept – material speculation – that utilizes actual and situated design artifacts in the everyday as a site of critical inquiry. We see the literary theory of possible worlds and the related concept of the counterfactual as informative to this work. We briefly present three examples of interaction design artifacts that can be viewed as material speculations. 

Document type: 
Article

Material Speculation: Actual Artifacts for Critical Inquiry

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2015-06
Abstract: 

Speculative and fictional approaches have long been implemented in human-computer interaction and design techniques through scenarios, prototypes, forecasting, and envisionments. Recently, speculative and critical design approaches have reflectively explored and questioned possible, and preferable futures in HCI research. We propose a complementary concept – material speculation – that utilizes actual and situated design artifacts in the everyday as a site of critical inquiry. We see the literary theory of possible worlds and the related concept of the counterfactual as informative to this work. We present five examples of interaction design artifacts that can be viewed as material speculations. We conclude with a discussion of characteristics of material speculations and their implications for future design-oriented research. 

Document type: 
Article

Avalanche Beacon Parks: Skill Development and Team Coordination in a Technological Training Ground

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

High-risk outdoor recreation allows its enthusiasts to reach unprecedented levels of adrenaline; it also contains risks and requires specific training (in part technological). In particular, its participants must be ready to react efficiently during an emergency or in response to an accident. Technological training grounds can simulate particular contexts and emergency situations as a place for recreationists to train and practice. In this paper, we use the practice of avalanche companion rescue as a case study to explore how technological training grounds support recreationist training. Our results offer insights into how avalanche beacon training parks support skill development and team coordination training. We also present strategies to orient the design of technological training grounds beyond avalanche companion rescue.

Document type: 
Article

Dogmas of Understanding in Western Art Music Performance

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2015-07-22
Abstract: 

This paper presents an exploration of the ontological shift from musical materials (i.e. melody, harmony, rhythm, texture, timbre, register) to activities in music performance analysis. The “dogmas” extend Herbert H. Clark’s conceptual framework for the study of joint activity in language use to explore music performance in the WAM tradition. A systematic analysis of London Symphony Orchestra masterclasses examines the basic mechanisms of music making in four main areas: representation, audience, interaction and tacit knowledge. This exploration leads to a broader account of cognition and creativity in music performance, one that bridges inner and outer processes of awareness around domains of coordination in joint activities. In this view, material conceptualizations are viewed as targets of focal awareness rather than the basis for cognition in music making. This account, grounded in a rich third-person phenomenological analysis of instructional materials, paves the way for a “meaningful analytics” of musical practice.

Document type: 
Article

Automatic Calibration of Modified FM Synthesis to Harmonic Sounds Using Genetic Algorithms

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2012-07-14
Abstract: 

Many audio synthesis techniques have been successful inreproducing the sounds of musical instruments. Several of these techniques require parameters calibration. However, this task can be difficult and time-consuming especially when there is not intuitive correspondence between a parameter value and the change in the produced sound. Searching the parameter space for a given synthesis technique is, therefore, a task more naturally suited to an automatic optimization scheme.

Genetic algorithms (GA) have been used rather extensively for this purpose, and in particular for calibrating Classic FM (ClassicFM) synthesis to mimic recorded harmonic sounds. In this work, we use GA to further explore its modified counterpart, Modified FM (ModFM), which has not been used as widely, and its ability to produce musical sounds not as fully explored. We completely automize the calibration of a ModFM synthesis model for the reconstruction of harmonic instrument tones using GA. In this algorithm, we refine parameters and operators such as crossover probability or mutation operator for closer match. As an evaluation, we show that GA system automatically generates harmonic musical instrument sounds closely matching the target recordings, a match comparable to the application of GA to ClassicFM synthesis.

Document type: 
Conference presentation