Interactivity - M1 kickoff
The semester starts with a lecture on Faceless Interaction — A Conceptual Examination of the Notion of Interface: Past, Present, and Future by Janlert & Stolterman. They argue that we are to locked into what they describe as four different thought styles about interfaces and have not really defined what interfaces are. The authors want us to think further and less technically about interactions and interfaces. As interactions become more complex we might need to create new types of interfaces or leave the traditional interface behind and behave more like people do, interactions that are more based on culture and context than on control panels.
What they propose is a new faceless interaction thought style, where we don't direct our attention to a specific surface. It is more about fluid interactions in an open world where we think of interactions more like waves than points. Waves are less defined and can differ in strength, so thinking in this wave makes more continuous and less on or off.
The authors imagine three different directions for faceless interactions:
things: Artefacts that interacted with based on physicality like picking up a speaker to make it play or flipping your phone to mute it.
being: Systems that you relate to like having conversation with it like smart speakers and digital assistants
field: A more abstract interaction where you don't have a clear target to interact with or maybe not even a user. Ambient computing and prediction could fit in here.
It's an interesting and thought provoking text but I think it lacks a bit in it's grounding. The authors ask us to just trust them as they don't give us a lot of evidence to base the assumptions on. I really think there are things to work with here and it gives me a better language and understanding of interaction as a medium but I wish they would explain a bit more how they came to these conclusions.
Assignment: Fields/Computer Vision
Brief: Tinker with computer vision and how that could be used with the fields direction of faceless interactions. Formulate a very modest initial question, sketch, reflect, repeat.
Materials: Computer vision.
Team: Lin and me
We started by examining the computer vision demos Clint gave us and explored some more libraries. TensorFlow by google seems to have some nice functions to find people and stuff.
The assignment seems very vague and we are struggling a bit to come up with stuff we want to tinker with but reading more about it and discussing it with other people should make it a bit more clear.