Viser innlegg fra februar, 2008

Iteration two - Workshop

The touch project are moving forward again, tomorrow i will conduct a three hour workshop with Marianne, Martin, Ingrid and Alice. This will actually be the first workshop i facilitate for one of my projects, and that makes it exiting. The last few days has been all about preparing for the workshop and we have had several lectures and practice in topics on how to conduct them. I hope the preparation has been good enough to make it a useful workshop.

Workshop planning
Myself and Gunnar had a workshop on the workshop to try to define more precicly the problems we wanted to shine a light on. It was quite useful.

To get my participants tuned into workshop at an early stage they are required to bring with them one everyday object that is not related to school and that is not the mobile phone. I will put up a lot of paper on the wall as i find standing discussion, with paper to draw and write on, to be very productive. Something edible and drinkable will also be present.
1st. Hour (Star…

Sound Book AVM

I've never seen this device berfore. You can hook up an ipod or mp3 players with usb plugs and buy music and books. It was placed in a bookstore in Oslo (Tanum). Memory cards can also be used in the card readers on the machine.

Major Project - Iteration One

Finally i have started on the major project. This first iteration is a wedge into the tangible tree i will try to scale before spring. I try to find a fitting chunk of challenges to fit into the remaining months. Hopefully things will grow more visible than it is right now, but the seeds are at least in the earth..:TheoryI find the term "Use Quality" intriguing when applied to design. In the book "thoughtful interaction design", by Lowgren & Stolterman, the authors try to establish a framework for working with qualities in interaction design as a supporting tool. "A language of use qualities says nothing about how to design an artifact or how to address its totality, but it may support the designer in her ongoing work of developing a repertoire, an articulation language, and a sense of quality."Is it possible to decide and implement certain use qualities as a goal for a project before it has started? Will that lead to better results or is the quality …

Controlling the Microcontroller

introduction to arduino

Arduino helps me as a designer to get intimate with a microcontroller without being too technical. The sensors (input) hooks up to the arduino board which is connected to my laptop via usb and can be programmed using a simple java enviroment similar to processing. When the programming is done the code is burned to the onboard chip and the sensors connects to the outputs based on the rules laid out by my program.

Sensors can be great fun and have a strong impact on any project. The hard part is to have a sensible mapping between the sensor and the output. When is it right to use a sensor glove? It is also important to scale the scope of the project so it fits within the chosen sensors range. Infusionsystems is a good source for sensors.

Learning Arduino
A good starting point for learning arduino is at ladyda and todbot.

The Board(This is spesific for our boards
The TX and RX pins are reserved for communication with the board and not used by us. The digtal pins …

Physical Computing - Introduction

Moving away from the screen is our focus when we start working with electronics. Being able to work with and design circuits that enable our interaction designs will give our projects a level of realism we previously did not have access to.

I hope my electronic skills will become good enough to allow me using a sketch based approach to the hardware design, in much the same manner as my drawings, and enable me to make quick iterations of the hardware needed for our final prototype. As an introduction we started with just a Bread-board and a few LEDs. Me and Silje also played with several of the photoresistors in our toolkit, great fun. Other sensors where also tested, like the pressure and bend sensors, quite amazing stuff.

In a few weeks we will have a workshop with Tom Igoe. If that workshop on Pysical Computing (PC) can be compared with what we learnt in Processing from Marius Watz last semester it would be great, but i suspect we will not get that much time this time. Hopefully, sinc…

A lexicon of tangible projects continued..

Lecture by Timo Arnall and Einar Sneve Martinussen

Going through a host of tangible interaction projects we discover where the field has been and how it is developing in the practical application of TUI (Tangible User Interfaces) and Ubiquitous Computing.

We look into projects that move out into the urban space of the City and by that increase the impact and consequence of Ubiquitous Computing.

U-City, Korea
Builidng a city around the computing rather than implementing computing into a city.

Uses an emptry building as a screen for games played from mobile devices. It's more an effort to use communication to revive abandoned buildings in Berlin rather than using it as just a screen.

Open City (Grafitty lab)
Using a powerful green laser as drawing tool on facades of buildings. A camera films the green spec on the facade and projecting the resulting stroke back onto the facade to create huge grafitti.

LED Throwies
Building cheap LED assemblies with magnets to throw onto metalsurf…

Major Project - Startup

The first four weeks of this semester have been all about getting up to speed on several aspects of NFC and RFID. From now on it will be just one project until summer, combined with several workshops on physical computing. We have been given several design briefs to choose from. Among the briefs i am sure there is some that will result in an interesting project.

I have an issue with RFID in that it feels very limited to work with. It's in one way just an advanced barcode. RFID's main feature is to identify whatever the tag has been stuck on. Compared to barcodes RFID's main advantage is that it can be read through other materials (ie. it can be invisible, inside stuff). This feature enables a host of design opportunities that e.g. barcodes can't compete with. There are tags that are read/write enabled, but so far we have just worked with the read only types. The solution to make anything interesting with RFID is not in the tag it self, but in how the system around it is…

Natural Communication

Lecture by Eamonn Shaw (Tandberg)Shaw presents us with what Tandberg feel is their challenges developing video communication tools Screens and DisplayEven in the context of the very visual world we live in the level of collaboration between participants in a video conference is still at a very basic level. You see and talk to your opponents. There is an issue of passive vs. active interaction. This is related to the idea that participants in the conference can act as viewers while the ideal would have them as users of the system. If they are viewers the system is reduced to TV and the videoconferencing system has failed.For me this sounds like an issue of transparency. The technology struggles with removing the barrier between the people that communicate – technology. This barrier is complex and several factors are in play here.Shaw says there is nothing that stops the communication to step away from the traditional screen and start projecting on to surfaces as an option. But I think …