Friday, April 28, 2006


This scenario shows how the objectworks in one of the possible situations:

1_The user edits the settings through the software

2_The device is linked to the computer by an usb cable

3_now she sets the "mode" using a botton on the object

4_here is a zoom on the screen, which shows the selected mode

5_the girls wears the device with a necklace

6_she goes out

7_here wecan see how the device senses the objects in the range distance

8_it senses tags inside the bag, but it can't find everithing...

9_something is missing so it beeps

10_the girl looks at the message on the display

11_she forgot to take her diary with her !

12_she sets the alarm off

13_and goes back home to take the diary

Monday, April 24, 2006


- a device that reminds you the objects you need to carry around with you;
- it is little, can be wearable and portable in many ways;
- it is simple to use;

the object is thought for a target of people between 20 and 35 years old, which can be university students or workers, mainly women. they are peolple which have many yhings to think about, which need or want to carry a lot of stuff with them, people which often forget/lose things around or are afraid to be stolen.

they are people confident with technology, and they can be influenced by trends in technology or fashion, or which could simply appreciate a new little device.

- PART 1: the device, which is about 2,5-3 cm;
- PART 2: a software e;
- PART 3: tags.

- through the software you set and update the settings
- once informations about tags, objects and so on are uploaded, the device works when it is switched “on”
- the device senses the tags into a certain distance. if one or more tags are not in the assigned distance, it doesn’t feel it/
them, therefore it alerts you.
- you can read on the little display the name of the object you’re lacking.

- the object itself is a tiny device easy to carry. is portable, wereable, hangable...
- the shape is not yet definite, but it should be smooth, rounded and soft. Also quite ludic, maybe;
- the material could be plastic or gum (see:;
- it has an integrated lithim battery;
- the idea is it to be a very simple object, with the less controllers as possible, as it is updated by the computer software. The
controllers and outputs are:
(MUST): botton to choose between sound and vibration and to stop
the alarm; botton to select the mode; hold.
(MIGHT): speaker; light; volume.- it has a little display, where you can read the settings you have selected and lacking
- it has a little display, where you can read the change of the settings and the message.
- the switch on/off is made pressing the object itself, which expands and get thinner.

- the software is a simple program you use to edit and update dhe device;
- through it you can choose between:
number of the tag (identification)
tone (vibration, light, sound (and his melody)
(it you don’t choose you get the default values or those you have been using the last time).

-Tags are what the device needs to sense the objects. They are tiny peaces which have to be located on the objects you need to be reminded of. The device senses them within a range. When the tag is outside this range, the device doesn't sense it anymore, so it alerts you that it's lacking.

Monday, March 13, 2006

major task: research


The research i made is about the objects man always carries in his everiday life.
My interest sprung from a world everiday more technologic, full of objects, and my personal interest and curiosity.
I based my research mainly on interviews to people and papers.

Nowadays people own many objects fulfilling a range of practical, social and emotional needs. Most of these objects are stored in and around a home space. People tend to travel outside the home environment on a daily basis whether it is to commute to work, for exercise or to socialize.

With few exceptions, however, most people own too objects to carry them outside their home. "Mobile essentials" (MEs), how they were called by the Nokia Research Center, refers to the cluster of objects people consider essential to take when outside the home environment.

Given the range of possible objects to choose from what to bring and how to carry those items is not an easy choice. People apply different strategies and solutions to decide what to bring, each of which has its own trade-offs and problems depending on situation, personal habits and preferences.

The primari focus is to know what people carry, but also how and why people carry those objects and the way they do it. In this respect, transitions between situations should be considered to be the most important to observe, e.g. leaving home for work, or leaving a cafe, or getting on or off a train. So it appears clear that there are things which are carried depending on how long we are going out, and on where we are going.

The exact objects considered to be mobile essentials varies from person to person and context to context. However 3 objects - keys, cash and mobile phone are considered essential irrespective of culture or gender.

To get to know the reason why, we should investigate on what those objects mean and which function they have. The hypothesis given by Nokia Research Center is that "these objects aid survival in the modern urban world - keys and money provide access to shelter, food and warmth whilst the phone enables convenient communication with someone who can provide access to these."

In addition to those 'core' "Mobile essentials" , nine broad and overlapping categories of 'peripheral' objects could be identified: travel support; identification; medical; addiction; emotional & spiritual; appearance; entertainment; contact & other information; and payment.

For example it appeared from my interviews that both man and women often answered they bring along: chewing gums, iPod or mp3 reader, lighter, cigarettes, sunglasses, lipbalm, handkerchiefs, handcreme.
Other objects people mentioned were: laptop, usb key and portable sony play station. Other things were: hair bands, parfume, toothbrush, contact lenses case, glasses, agenda, pen, book, mirror, glasses, make-up case and digital camera.

It is very important to make a distinction between the ways people carry the objects. It came out from my interviews that girls, who usually carry a bag, enumerated more things, and many of them answered "depending on how big is the bag...".
Between the strategies people adopt to support carrying, containment is the most important. More importantly, containers alleviate the mental and physical workload of bringing and remembering multiple "Mobile essentials".

It is possible to notice from my research, that the world of objects is very complex, so objects men carry with them everyday have a strong meaning. Things which people ineract with, infact, "are not simply tools for survival, or for making survival easier and more confortable. Things embody goals, make skills manifest, and shape the intentities of their users." (from "the meaning of things")

It could be a good challenge then, to make the universe of "mobile essentials" easier. Portables and wereables would be a great way to make it more accessible.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

task 3 _ touchable services

It was really interesting to work with RFIDs as they are so small and cheap that you can place them almost everywhere, and do almost everything combining them with your mobile phone.
Me and my group - Jon Olav, Bjork Erik and Marie - started brainstorming on mondy, and the possibilities were so many that we couldn't decide the idea to build around the concept, as this technology gives raelly a great number of possibilities. Finally, on wednesday afternoon, after a tiring working day we had the final idea, which was really stimulating both as i could easily figure it out as a working service and as i personally find it really useful. I'll explain our concept in the fallowing paragraphs.
Our concept is a new service which uses RFID to give people advices about places to go and things to do in the city.
The purpose is to suggest someone a place - a caffè, a shop or anything else - he probably would like, based on the places he and other people go to.
This service is made for every kind of people: inhabitants of the city and not, and it is thought to be very useful for tourists.
It is a free service and you subscribe to it just if you are interested.
The service works on an amazon-system-based database, which stores the informations of the places where people go, and builds a network of places based on the similarities of the interests.
It uses only the data stored in the last month, so that it is always updated.
To have an idea of how it could work among real people, we printed a short questionnaire, and we interviewed 12 people, asking them if they would find interesting a service like this, if they would consider paying for it, and we asked them to list 3 clubls, 3 bars, 3 caffès and 3 shops they usually go to.
Then we placed all those places on a map of Oslo, dividing the different people with different colours. This was very interesting, as we could see the places people have in common.
It was a really stimulating task, and i got to know more about the RFID technology, that probably in a couple of years will invade the the spaces giving us every kind of service and information.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Workshop _ Cute Circuit

CUTE CIRCUIT - wearables workshop

I am personally very interested in fashion, so being introduced to a theme like "wearables" was for me a really stimulating and interesting experience.
I really liked the way CUTE CIRCUIT made us approach to the subject, introducing the theme and explaining really clearly some basic things. They also gave as a really helpful overview about sensors, in a very easy way so i could -for the first time since i've been dealing with them- see them not like monsters : )
So, Ryan and Francesca structured the week in lectures and practical work sessions, so that we alternated lectures and slides-presentations to brainstorming and work.

I worked together with Jon Olav and Jorn, as we were mostly interested in an "emotional" way to look at clothing. This poin of view interests me as i see clothing as one of the best ways to express personality and even feelings. So i think that clothing could be a good way to help the interaction between people, and they could make easier tocommunicate things one sometimes finds hard to express.
So, brainstorming and discussing through different ways by which emotions could be expressed by clothing, we decided to develop the a kind of accessories or clothing that could express something reading from your body, so something that is indirectly up to you to manage.
We realized the rough model for an accessory that women can wear on their shoulders, on which there are a lot of petal-shaped things which goes up and down depending on your heart beat.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Workshop _ Tom Igoe

Just finished the workshop-week by Tom Igoe, i don't feel really comfortable about electronics and programming... It's been a really exhausting week, cutting and soldering cables, and the worst thing was: no result at all !! My already little enthusiasm, sank completely on the 4th day, as i wasn't already able to make a led blink... fortunately Daniel was so patient trying to help me, and moving the point of view of the programming to the side of graphics. Using processing has been much nicer, so i could have an instant-feedback to the codes, what the electronic-kind of things is lacking to me. In this way, i had the opportunity to face programming language, to begin playing with that starting with simple graphic examples.

Monday, February 06, 2006

task 2_collaborative instruments

For this task me, Anrè and Castilnano created an instrument inspired to Saturn, the planet.
We started from the idea of a half-sphere where the child could seat in and fluctuate moving the body, and as it floated it produced a sound, that changed depending on the position of the seat.
We didn't manage to pursue this concept as it was requested to make a prototype in 3 days, because it was difficoult and expensive to find something that could work as a half sphere.
We kept the idea, modifying that into a "saturn spaceshuttle"-thing, that kept the idea of floating using the body, effecting the sound depending on the movement. The result is a silver spacelike-shaped object, on which you stand and move, and as you move it produces different sounds, taken from radio recordings of saturn and mixed to other sounds in Max by Andrè. The thing works as it uses a sensor, that lies in the middle of the object, and that detectes the movement in four directions.
The idea was to make the instrument interactive in a way that needs all the body to move and to interact. That's because we considered that, to make an instrument to be played by a 4-6 years child, it would have to be funny and simple. So the semplicity is given by the shape and the way one can use it to try different kind of moves and different uses of it, and the funny thing is that the sound is related to the move, so that it is really playful.