Saturday we had our first meeting with the wearable group. They seemed like an enthusiastic and creative bunch so that’s a good start. A lot of different ideas from everyone so we will pick up a lot from each other in the next couple of months.
Listening to and talking with Anna Maria Cornelia was a refreshing and inspiring event. She’s an Experience Design teacher at the Technical University in Eindhoven, the Netherlands. She talked about her mission for the students to find a balance between technology and ideas. Urging them to take a broad approach to the subject and not get stuck in solutions or technology at the beginning. Another important thing she stressed that in the design process, every step is important. For me it was an appeal for awareness of my own process and to value every sketch and scribble. A notion already installed in me by my teacher Martin van Opdorp at the art academy but this was a good reminder.
She put her approach to practice with us right from the start. As I talked about data visualisation she asked me what that was. So I started to talk about LEDs and displays. My assignment for the next couple of weeks is to think about data visualisation without the technique, everything but LEDs and displays… That’s quite liberating! (But also kind of a shock to be honest.) She thought the warning bit was a negative message and wondered if there’s a way to work with the data and send out a positive message. I must say some people in the group were not very pleased with knowing how bad the air quality is. I’m the kind of person who just wants to know, be aware either good or bad. But I do need to consider what I want to achieve with the data, what kind of emotions I want to arouse.
So much for the concept, we also had to think about the techniques we’re going to use. For me that means of course the different sensors (are there any sensors that measure ‘positive’ gasses, and what would they be? Oxygen may be?), communication with the mobile phone and an idea popped up to see if I can make the thing run on solar energy so as not to contribute to the pollution.
So quite a lot of challenges ahead of which I’ll keep you posted.