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ActuEating: Designing, Studying and Exploring Actuating Decorative Artefacts

Research output: Contribution in Book/Report/ProceedingsPaper

Forthcoming
Publication date6/03/2018
Host publicationDesigning Interactive Systems
Place of PublicationNew York
PublisherACM
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

Actuating, dynamic materials offer substantial potential to enhance interior designs but there are currently few examples of how they might be utilised or impact user experiences. As part of a design-led exploration, we have prototyped (Wizard-of-Oz) an actuating, dining table runner (ActuEater1), and then developed a fully-interactive fabric version that both changes shape and colour (ActuEater2). Four in-situ deployments of ‘ActuEaters’ in different dinner settings and subsequent ‘design crits’ showed insights into how people perceive, interpret and interact with such slow-technology in interesting (and often unexpected) ways. The results of our ‘ActuEating’ studies provide evidence for how an actuating artefact can be simultaneously a resource for social engagement and an interactive decorative. In response, we explore design opportunities for situating novel interactive materials in everyday settings, taking the leap into a new generation of interactive spaces, and critically considering new aesthetic possibilities.