Sketching

Today we had lecture about sketching, not necessarily through drawing but even through bodystorming. We are supposed to sketch our design first, so we know what elements are important and interesting to be used in the design.

Today we hooked up two photocell sensors to Arduino, and through Ableton we were able to play two different sound files, depending on which sensor receives light/shade.

We were not absolutely sure about our concept, it did not seem to be much room for ideation since the design is around a hairbrush. But the teacher has shown to us that yes, there is room for ideation – the focus is on the design’s behavior, not on the material itself, important here is how it is used, and what happens. Now we feel better about our concept because we know we are on the right path.

Here is us testing the photocell sensors with Ableton.

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Introducing the topic

The day started with a lecture, in which Dimitrios introduced himself to us and the module. We would be working this time with focus on experiences – positive and negative. When it comes to the material part, we were allowed to use basically anything that can be hooked up on Arduino.

In order to help our designing process he introduced to us some important concepts, namely divergence, transformation and convergence. In the beginning of a creative process you have divergence, which means that you will have to define the design problem – what needs to be done or improved? Anything we can develop further? Once you know what the problem is, the transformation process takes place, which is also called ideation – process of generating, developing, and communicating new ideas – it can be in form of brainstorming, bodystorming, Thinking hats etc. And finally we have convergence, which takes place when we evaluate, refine and choose the best possibilities we have come up with.

Besides the lecture, we had text seminar around three texts: one dealing with designing for wearability, another about rich interactive experiences and finally a third that tackled tangibility. With that in mind we would have a good starting point to work on module 02 – skin-to-skin interaction and wearables.

The seminar and the day’s lecture were fruitful and helped me to come up with some ideas of my own. Now I was left with an almost impossible mission – find a partner – this time the teachers opted for self-assigned pairs, and I knew that most of my classmates had already chosen someone. But I was quite okay with the idea of working on my own – I had plenty of ideas, and quite nice set of skills.