What kind of relationships do people develop with the things they have at home? What is it that makes them keep and cherish certain things and discard others? And how is it possible to study these relationships in a way that could inform design of durable interactive artifacts? The behaviors implicated in connecting durability to interaction design are diverse, particular, and individual. This project aimed to both (i) create a designerly method for field research in the home and (ii) propose new principles and implications to guide future more durable--and meaningful--interactive product design for the home.
I explored the range of attachments people have with digital and non-digital domestic artifacts with an eye toward engendering longer lasting interactive product relationships.
I conducted personal inventories in 22 households over the course of several months. During each of these sessions I explored a wide spectrum of attachments participants had with their domestic things. I categorized and clustered this data and used affinity diagramming for analysis. Based on these insights, I proposed several design principles and directions--many of which are still being explored (and moving toward the prototyping stage).
This project was accepted into the CHI 2008 graduate student research competition, which, after several rounds of evaluation and presentations, I won! You can find this initial paper in the ACM digital library, along with a follow-up article written for the ACM Interactions Magazine. We recently had a long paper accepted to CHI 2009, which details personal inventories work spanning the past couple years.
W. Odom (2008). Personal Inventories: Toward Durable Human-Product Relationships. In extended abstracts of SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computer Systems (CHI 2008). Florence, Italy. ACM Press, 3777-3782
[Graduate Student Research Competition, 1st Place Winner].
Odom, W. , Blevis, E., Stolterman, E. (2008). Personal Inventories in the Context of Sustainability & Interaction Design. In (Blevis, E., contributing editor, Anderson, R. & Kolko, J., EICs) Forum: Sustainably Ours. ACM Interactions. Volume XV number 5. ACM Press, New York, NY.
Odom, W., Pierce, J., Stolterman, E., Blevis, E. (2009, in press). Understanding Why We Preserve Some Things and Discard Others in the Context of Interaction Design. In proceedings of SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems. Boston, USA. CHI ’09. ACM. New York, NY.