Touch sensitive surfaces combine an intuitive physical interaction but the magic of the digital creates an interaction that feels simple.
LED's will be wired around the rim so my solution to hiding the full brightness of the lighting, a gradient pattern is screen printed around the edges of the lamp diffuser to subtly transition from the semi-translucent screen to the black rim.
A few of many examples of some user scenarios.
I have decided that my target audience are people between the ages of 18 and 36 that live in Urban areas. as more people are wanting to live in cities and apartment size standards are shrinking, I imagine that tools need to be developed to live within small spaces.
I asked people from around the country to send me a photo of whatever they were doing around everywhere. I was interested in seeing the different settings, activities, and lifestyles this user segment participated in.
Brandon - Male, 27 - Vancouver, Canada
Kyle - Male, 25 - San Francisco, California
Elise - Female 22 - Providence, Rhode Island
Allison Wong, a peer of mine is researching how user participation can be involved in the design process. We collaborated to gather feedback on the forms I created to see if the tools were explanatory in how you would interact with the objects. We also intended to discover if the functions of the devices were applicable to their lifestyles within the home.
We shared the models with people and asked how they would interact with them as controllers or sensors for other appliances, devices, and experiences.
The majority of people had very clear and intuitive understanding of how the controller would be used in context of their function. Many predicted that the controllers would be used in ways that were familiar to them. For example, mouse functions on the computer came up a lot to control functions like temperature, speed, or volume.
Allison created this tool to help us understand how people interact within the home. They configured furniture and rooms and gave them pieces that symbolized the connected controllers.
A different group of people were asked to think about the objects in a more experiential way. They given the objects and were asked questions such as...
How would you use the object to effect your mood?
Most associated lighting quality, music, and relaxation.
How would you use this object to get ready for the day?
Bathing, cooking, and consuming data through news, Facebook, and email were the strongest feedback.
How could this object help you wake up?
Some participants would like the experience of waking up to be peaceful and gradual. Specifically an alarm clock connected to lighting.
How would you use this object to help with a collaborative activity?
Participants mostly thought that it was a tool to help you cook, play a game, or watch entertainment.
I've been conceptualizing settings and scenarios in which these controllers could be used, and these are some of the ideas that I would like to evaluate further.
Potluck Dinner - The way in which people experience their meals is communal and collaborative. Now that many people enjoy living in cities, Many are living in small and efficient apartments. Cooking may be more enjoyable when prepared with friends around a central stove. This concept shows a portable induction cook top that can be used on the dining room table instead of a kitchen area. The interface for this type of cooking range may need to be used by many and need to removed from a single plane.
Kitchen Storage - Millennials do not require the need to buy full sized appliances. I would like to think about the concept of the kitchen as multi-use and portable. What if refrigeration were in separate containers that could be transported else wear? Dishwashers could be used as crockery storage, minimizing the space needed for a kitchen. How is this environment controlled?
Magic Mirror - The washroom mirror could be used as a screen to control or depict information within the room. You can see adjust the temperature of the shower, confirm the auto-order of toilet paper, or gather quick information while brushing your teeth. All in which disappears behind the mirror.
Wake Up Call - Who wouldn't want to be woken up in a more pleasant way than that annoying ringtone on your phone? There is a lot of buzz recently in how lighting can affect mood, help you relax to sleep, and respond to the home environment. This interface could be integrated and controlled without using a phone or screen based device.
What's Happening? - The first thing many people do when they wake up is reach for their phone. Whether to read your email, check the weather, or read the news. Could something in your bedroom deliver this information to you subtly right when you awake?
By playing with form, texture, and material, I'm suggesting how physical interaction can be experienced beyond 2-dimensional screens. After sketching, I moved on to iterative models, and then through video suggest how you may interact with these objects.
What values need to be highlighted to find an IoT product useful? I've broken down these values into 4 categories that are not of monetary value.
Entertainment - Someone may want a product because it will make them smile, surprised, or delighted. A simple interaction like reminding you of something important, a game, or knowing that someone is thinking about you will make you happier.
Gaining Confidence - A connected device may be connected to a community or another person. maybe a device lights up or or sounds a noise that lets you know that you are completing an activity correctly.
Security - We take a security and well being seriously. Many products in the market protect our homes and hardware. software systems may be developed to keep our data secure within the home, and by knowing this, a user may feel more comfortable using a connected product.
Health and Wellness - A new movement that is very popular for many is our health. By understanding our well being that we could not acquire without a product we can see the benefits of sustaining or enhancing healthy habits.
Like big data, big context will be in our vocabulary in the future. Information like location data, social media sharing, and physical activity will create context for ambient intelligence around us. Big Context will also be outsourced and computed away from the home and in the cloud. Though big context is inevitable, how can we control devices in the near future.
Without Context - Let's say you come home from work and you have programmed your smart lights to turn on when you come home from work. The beacon in your home receives the signal from your phone that you have pulled your car into the driveway. The lights turn on and your wife Lynda is woken up from her nap on the couch.
With Context - You pull your car into the driveway, signaling your home system to turn the lights on. But the system recognizes that Lynda's heart rate is going at a pace that signifies she is sleeping. By using this data as well as her location in the home, the lights don't turn on.
This is a very simple example of how context from data could change the decisions can be made by an in home system. This type of scenario is technologically capable now, but research is not to the point where visual and habitual data can be detected instantly.
Context in the works
Quividi has developed a system that tracks audience sizes within retail spaces. The system recognizes faces to predict age and gender of the audience. Though this technology is moving in a progressive direction towards context, it takes about 2 years to gather enough data for market analysis.
Power over ethernet or POE is a system that passes data as well as electricity over a single line. This technology can enable a device such as a camera to be connected through one single connection. We will use this to keep all parts of the building electrically and data connected on one single line.
Can physical remotes and sensors throughout the home be a more delightful experience than a screen to control connected devices?
I believe that home goods companies will want a stake in the market for IoT products. Screen based interfaces are too excessive to control the function of the devices and are more suited for data analysis. By including beautiful objects with in the home could enhance and ease the interactions to control the devices.
What technology is relevant? What will be present in the future?
I wanted to organize the different physical activities and the tools we use to interact to understand and dissect where ambient intelligence may be used.