Research focus, v.1

Last semester, I talked with my advisor, Jodi, about what I wanted to focus on for my research.  I decided that I liked WiiPaint’s research question, and tweaked it to ask broader questions such as:

– How can we encourage people to approach and engage with technology in public spaces?
– How can ambient technology in public spaces help us be more aware of 1) our environment, 2) our automatic behaviors in public?
– How can ambient technology in public spaces encourage us to make positive choices?
– How can ubiquitous computing affect our outdoors experience by tailoring to our emotions?

Although these questions mostly focus on the outdoors/public spaces, particularly cities and towns, some of them can also apply to private spaces such as offices or homes.

Also, here are a few research questions I had been thinking about social interaction in public spaces, as a follow up to an old blog post.  These questions were inspired by a visit to NYC as well as One in 8 Million, a collection of short documentaries about people in New York.

– How can collective public storytelling improve social interactions between strangers, particularly in waiting spaces?
– What’s the best way to share and display your own stories with others?
– How can we use design to address some of the privacy concerns?

I’m working on a few projects dealing with the first set of questions right now. I’ve chosen to look specifically at: stairs, trees, umbrellas, and maybe bike racks. I’m still thinking of ways that I can tie both sets of questions together, and to refine these questions further as I gain more experience with research.

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