Table of Contents

VOLUME XVIII.2 March + April 2011

  • Welcome
    • WELCOME Interactions

      Ron Wakkary, Erik Stolterman

      In this issue's cover story, "What I Learned on Change Islands: Reflections on IT and Pace of Life," Phoebe Sengers reflects on our relationship with technology based on a study she conducted on Change Islands in Newfoundland, a large island on the furthest eastern end of Canada. In 1949…

  • Demo Hour
    • Demo hour

      Loove Broms, Marcelo Coelho, Pattie Maes, Jie Qi, Leah Buechley, Fabian Hemmert, Susann Hamann, Matthias Löwe, Anne Wohlauf, Josefine Zeipelt, Gesche Joost

      Energy AWARE Clock Energy AWARE Clock is designed to make energy awareness a part of everyday life. The 24-hour clock visualizes the daily energy rhythms of a typical household and is intended to function like an ordinary kitchen clock, both in form, place, and use. The clock displays electrical…

  • Blogpost
    • On methods

      Steve Harrison, Deborah Tatar

      Some design methods are used but not taught. Others are taught but not used. That is the problem. Arguably, the most useful methods we can teach our students are the most neglected in our classes. When we look at people in design practice, we see variations of affinity diagrams.…

  • Departments
    • Feedback

      INTR Staff

      Feedback to the editors Hi Ron and Erik, I want to congratulate you on your first issue of interactions. It's very entertaining and informative. I have not finished it yet, but I already see more articles about future trends of interaction design. I think this is great. I would…

    • Community calendar 2011

      INTR Staff

      March 2011: Making Visible the Invisible: Data visualisation in art, design and science collaborations Conference date: March 10–11, 2011 Computer Support Cooperative Work 2011 (CSCW 2011) Conference date: March 19–23, 2010 Eighth ACM Conference on Creativity and Cognition Call for submissions: March 25, 2011 Conference date: November…

  • Columns
    • What to expect when you’re not expecting it

      Steve Portigal, Julie Norvaisas

      As practitioners, when we meet with people to conduct contextual research, our focus is driven by our client's business objectives, nominally investigating how our client's products are falling short of people's needs, or how the organization's core capabilities could achieve those business objectives by meeting those needs. Because of…

    • Endless nights—-learning from design studio critique

      Jon Kolko

      I'm intrigued by the nostalgic magic of the culture of design education. Most designers I've met who have gone through formal design training are passionate about their experiences; they talk with fond recollection of long nights, endless critiques, and sneaking into the computer-lab closet to catch a few hours'…

  • Day in the Lab
    • Mobile life centre

      INTR Staff

      How would you describe your lab? The Mobile Life Centre at Stockholm University in Kista, Sweden, does research in mobile services and ubiquitous computing—focusing on consumer-oriented mobile and ubiquitous services spanning. It was founded in 2007 as a VINN Excellence Centre with a 10-year grant selected by VINNOVA (the…

  • Forums
    • Bridging the gaps between HCI and social media

      Joe McCarthy

      We are increasingly surrounded by, immersed in, and captivated by social media. This is hardly surprising, given that we are social creatures who naturally gravitate toward channels that enable us to connect with others. But what does the explosive growth of social media mean to those who study and…

    • The role of physicality in tangible and embodied interactions

      Eva Hornecker

      Olivia Newton John's popular single "Let's Get Physical" came out in the early 1980s, at about the same time that HCI researchers were bringing the physical world back into computing by inventing new interfaces that let you talk, move, touch, and gesture with them [1]. Within HCI, Hiroshi Ishii…

    • Productive tensions

      Tad Hirsch

      It's my great pleasure to introduce interactions' new Community + Culture forum, which will focus on designing technology with and for communities. I have spent most of my adult life involved with various kinds of community-oriented projects; I have worked in the nonprofit sector and in academia and am…

    • UNDER DEVELOPMENT While the meter is running

      Marshini Chetty, Richard Banks, A. Bernheim Brush, Jonathan Donner, Rebecca Grinter

      Most readers of this magazine live in an always-on, ultra-connected world. Many of us enjoy all-you-can-eat bandwidth at reasonably high speeds. But what happens when your Internet use is palpably constrained? What happens when you only have a fixed amount of bandwidth per month and where every byte you…

    • Universal interactions

      Juan Hourcade, Natasha Bullock-Rest

      Welcome to the new forum on universal interactions. When contemplating how to design technologies, interaction design professionals may often first think of designs that will work for people like themselves. This can end up adversely affecting populations with needs and abilities that differ from the majority of our field.…

  • Features
    • Comparative informatics

      Bonnie Nardi, Ravi Vatrapu, Torkil Clemmensen

      Comparative informatics (CI) is the application of the comparative method to the study of information and communication technologies (ICTs) across diverse contexts [1]. CI systematically examines similarities and differences in the ICT life cycle—design, development, deployment, adoption, use, impact, and evaluation—in contexts including cultures, regions, nations, generations, socioeconomic classes,…

    • Digital interdependence and how to design for it

      Ann Light

      This article is about interdependence and what that means for design. It is about how computers, in particular those that are networked, have the potential to make global relations more apparent to us. And it is about how we, as interaction designers and design researchers, use this knowledge to…

    • Where is the thinking in systems thinking?

      Jodi Forlizzi

      Systems thinking has a long history. Its influence on design can be traced back for many decades. However, systems thinking remains almost unknown today among practicing designers and design researchers. Systems thinking is relevant, especially in light of all that is going on in modern society. When designers work,…

    • Designing for everyday interactions in HCI4D

      Susan Wyche

      During the past few years, there has been an explosion of interest in human-computer interaction for development (HCI4D). But what does this mean for the HCI community? It is not simply design for development, which emphasizes producing technologies that address goals such as poverty reduction and increasing literacy. While…

    • Sketching with stop motion animation

      Daniel Fallman, Camille Moussette

      Unlike product designers and architects, many current interaction designers have not had design training in its traditional sense, i.e., studio work, model building, and design critique sessions. Rather, they typically come from computer science, informatics, engineering, psychology, behavioral sciences, or anthropology. Others have joined from media studies, Web design,…

    • Open sesame!

      Martin McCaig

      Companion books are typically glossaries—for example, The Oxford Companion to Shakespeare [1]—but there are also companions that deal with aspects of their subject in more depth [2]. To produce companions in the past, it was necessary to have enough material for a complete book. These days, however, there is…

    • Reflexive design thinking

      Barton Friedland, Yutaka Yamauchi

      Over the years we have been involved in practices of applying methods and insights of human-computer interaction (HCI) for client engagements. Specifically, we emphasize a human-centered approach employing ethnography and participatory design that we collectively refer to as human-centered design practices. Yet we have become increasingly aware of a…

  • Cover story
    • What I learned on Change Islands

      Phoebe Sengers

      Our role as IT designers is to imagine and create the technologies of the future. In doing so, we are taking part in an ongoing cultural process of modernization that, since the early 20th century, has emphasized values such as expanding choice, productivity, and controlling one's time. I am…