Garden | City [Final]

Garden | City





‘Garden | City’ is a screen-based installation that draws human interaction. Based on a disjoint in Singapore residents with Nature.

In a bid to industrialise Singapore, more than 95 per cent of land has been cleared for architectures. What results is the destruction of natural habitats, in flora and fauna, of animals in Singapore leading to extinctions as well as potentially critically-harming the populations. Other reasons like war as well as eliminating the threats of potential predators to Singaporeans (like the tiger) also contribute to extinctions of animals in Singapore.

Conservation techniques have already began since 1963, with the movement of turning Singapore into a ‘Garden City’. This movement further developed to ‘City in a Garden’ in its 50 year commemoration, in 2013, with planting of more trees in Singapore, as well as allocating more conservation parks.

However more often than not, we have a lack of information about critically-endangered animals in Singapore, and animal-conservation techniques and actions are not widely spread. Therefore in installing such temporary screen-based installation, we hope to raise awareness to Singaporeans about the matter of critically-endangered animals in Singapore, as well as be notified of such conservation techniques available and how to participate.



‘Garden | City’ takes people to another realm through a temporary screen-based installation, placed at the site of the ‘Supertree Grove’ at Gardens by the bay, through the usage of 2 different types of touch features using existing technology.

Firstly, featuring the use of the nostalgic action of shadow gestures, people are able to dictate the narrative of the life animal characters and trees on the screen through the use of different hand gestures for  different animals and trees, which are captured recorded into the screens as people watches their animal gestures come to life as a narrative.

Also, the narrative screen lies a touch-feature where touching on the trees will transform them into architectures of man-made establishments. As the screen fills with such structures, the narrative shifts as too much structures will warrant the vanish of animals as their ‘natural habitats’ are destroyed. The key is to allow people to maintain the balance of animals to live harmoniously within the realm of ‘Garden | City’.

The key of ‘Garden | City’ is the use of human touch to dictate the narratives. For it is Us that resulted in the imbalance of nature. And again, it is up to Us to shift back the balance of nature.

Screen-based installation is designed for people of all ages. Screen features the interactive narrative screen flanked by an information board and a capture screen on each side.



We incorporated the use of hand gestures to dictate the narrative of the animal and trees.

As the users are able to create animals and trees into the narrative screen, they also have the power to eliminate the animals as they ‘creates architectures’ when touching the trees.

The use of hand gestures show a poetic notion that nature conservation is within our hands, our power. 

Educating the people

garden-city-8We incorporated the use of narrative to allow people to dictate. Once there is an imbalance, the scene closes with a permutation of text that shows the end of an era.


In addition, an information board raises awareness to the people of the facts of critically endangered species in Singapore, and how they are able to help with nature conservation.



garden-city-3We incorporated the use of 2 technologies. Leap Motion, and Touch features, for the Capture screen and Narrative Screen respectively.

The use of leap motion enable us to track the gestures of the hand into the screen, while the use of touch receptive allow response of the user’s touch on the narrative screen.


The placement of the temporary installation is in Gardens by the Bay, the Supertree Grove.

In placing at Gardens by the Bay, we feel that the space is compatible to our installation as it fits the nature view, and the sustainability philosophy of the ground is in tune with our project.

During our site visit, we feel that the placement at Supertree Grove is the most coherent as it is a place where people congregate, thus will be able to look into our installation as they rest within the area.

Possible collaboration


Our purpose of the installation is to create awareness to the public regarding the existing nature conservation movements that are already available. We feel that our installation can create more exposure to the public to these movements, that the NParks have organised.


Also, as the i Light Singapore movement warrants similar use of sustainability as their philosophy, and the placement to be within Marina Bay, we feel that perhaps it would be coherent to collaborate with them during the temporary showcase.

final deliverables




  • Incorporating Conservation Movements into the Ending of the Narratives
  • Bridging the idea of Balance / Imbalance to be more clear
  • More Endings
  • An introduction Video for users to understand how to use the installation
  • Ambience state during the idle period where nobody experiences the installation can bring forth more Conservation movements
  • Narrative may be better with a time-frame

Final thoughts

We hope that through the interactive temporary installation of ‘Garden | City’, within the fun of using the installation, Singapore residents will be more equipped with the required knowledges of nature conservation, and the animal species that are close to extinction, and be more apprehensive to nature conservation movements.

Our progress regarding the project was hindered by a lot of obstacles. One of which is a lack of information regarding the issue of nature conservation. Seemingly, there is a lack of empathy regarding wild animals in Singapore, that their co-existence with the Singapore residents is not important. Only the people involved in nature conservation industry are empathetic to the issue. Therefore there was much difficulty collating researches regarding the aspect.

The other obstacle was the raw footage that we needed to obtain for the final video cut. As we were incorporating animal movements, we needed raw footages of these animals working in green screen as we were not able to film these wild animals in an enclosed area. Therefore a lot of the animals and nature had to be compromised. Nik who edited the video also had to pick up a new software in After Effects.

All in all, we are really pleased with the outcome. We feel that the final outcome correlates with our agenda. In the whole process, the 3 of us complemented each other very well and we did our jobs to the best of our own abilities.

That’s all folks!


(12) Garden | City (name updated) – PROGRESS (4)

Garden | City



Final Concept

‘Garden | City’ takes people to another realm through a temporary screen-based installation, placed at the site of the ‘Supertree Grove’ at Gardens by the bay, through the usage of 2 different types of touch features using existing technology.

Firstly, featuring the use of the nostalgic action of shadow gestures, people are able to dictate the narrative of the life animal characters and trees on the screen through the use of different hand gestures for  different animals and trees, which are captured recorded into the screens as people watches their animal gestures come to life as a narrative.

[ Concept Video #1 ]

Also, the narrative screen lies a touch-feature where touching on the trees will transform them into architectures of man-made establishments. As the screen fills with such structures, the narrative shifts as too much structures will warrant the vanish of animals as their ‘natural habitats’ are destroyed. The key is to allow people to maintain the balance of animals to live harmoniously within the realm of ‘Garden | City’.

[ Concept Video #2 ]

The key of ‘Garden | City’ is the use of human touch to dictate the narratives. For it is Us that resulted in the imbalance of nature. And again, it is up to Us to shift back the balance of nature.

Screen-based installation is designed for people of all ages. Screen features the interactive narrative screen flanked by an information board and a capture screen on each side.


(more to follow)


We researched on existing technologies that can be incorporated in our screen-based installation.

Leap Motion

[ Leap Motion Website ]

Leap Motion is a technological company that develop a  unique combination of software and hardware tracks the movement of hands and fingers with very low latency, converting in into 3D input, for digital content in virtual and augmented reality.



We feel that the technology can be incorporated in our screen-based installation through the capture of hand gestures into the screen.


The company behind the exhibition of the Future World at the Art Science Museum, features a lot of really interesting technology based art installations.

One particular project that we feel is similar to our screen-based installation is the ‘Sketch Animals’.

[teamLab website ]

‘Sketch Animals’ features the idea of creating animals and making them come to life, as well as interacting with the animals by touching them. We feel that our concept is pretty similar in the use of touch to interact with the animals and trees in our installation.

All in all, we feel that the technologies researched can be incorporated in our screen-based installation.


(to be updated)

to be continued.

(11) Depreciation of the World – PROGRESS (3)

Garden | City



Research (cont.)

Look at Existing Events that are similar to concept.

Case Study #1

Singapore Lights Festival

Singapore Night Festival presents art installations within Bugis, Bras Basah. Using the streets and facade and spaces inside  Museums located the vicinity, promotes art installations that sets upon a different theme every year.


Case Study #2

i Light Marina Bay


i light marina bay is a 3-week light art festival that presents light installations designed by artists around the world, within Marina Bay. At the same time turning off lights of the buildings around and using the light installations to illuminate the place.


i Light Marina Bay too supports the idea of sustainability through the ‘Switch off, Turn Up” action, where offices are encouraged to switch off lights and turning up air-condition temperatures.

We feel that i Light Marina Bay supports our installation idea, our message of screen-based experience has a deeper meaning and content to the poetic screen-based portray.

Message to be finalised with more research.


Look back at the researched animals, trees and man-made infrastructures and came out with a Life-Cycle table.


Considerations of the amount of animal types as  too much may resulting in confusion of gestures. We do NOT want to overcomplicate the gestures which will hinder the fun of the screen-based experience. Gestures considered has to be simple and relatable.

Amount of animals, trees and man-made infrastructures to be finalised.


On-screen experience based upon the chosen site (Supertree Grove).


Usage of physical backdrop, and incorporating the screen-based technology.

Visualised based upon the size of the proposed screen canvas. Considerations on whether the experience can be optimised with the amount of animals on the limited canvas.


to be continued.

(10) Depreciation of the World – PROGRESS (2)





Consist of wildlife in Singapore. Research is based upon Endangered animals and Types of trees. Majority of animal wildlife consists of marine / entomological organisms while Land animals are constricted to a few.


Notable animals = Green Emperor Pigeons/ Banded Leaf Monkeys/ Mouse deer/ Sunda Pangolin/ Leopard Cats. More research to follow.

Notable trees = Rain Tree/ Trumpet Tree/ Palm Tree

Human Architecture = HDB /  Incinerator / Keppel Bay


To have the installation placed in the context of a park will warrant a stronger message.

Places considered = Chinese Garden / Gardens by the Bay

Chinese Garden
Chinese Garden

Chinese Garden does not exactly portray the whole concept of sustainability, rather more spiritual and orientality. Therefore, defeats the installation.

Gardens by the Bay
Gardens by the Bay



Saw a coherence with our theme as the Gardens by the Bay puts effort into inculcating sustainability. Chosen Context.


A Rough Visualisation of Proposed Installation
A Rough Visualisation of Proposed Installation

field research

Went to visit Gardens by the Bay for site exploration and deducing the spot to place installation.


Time Visited =  6PM – 7.30PM


Finally decided the spot to be at the site of the Supertree Grove.

Site of the Supertree Grove has a laid back atmosphere. With the space around the ground of each individual ‘Trees’ serving as a platform for rest and relaxation. The Supertree Grove is perhaps the first site that allows congregation within the Gardens.

People gathered here are of all ages. Some even setting up a picnic for their group. Many people are sitting down, others laying on their back.  Also, there is a paid trip up to the bridge ontop the Supertree Grove which warrants a long queue, but the platform allows rest while waiting.

Furthermore, at around 7.30PM, there is a showcase of a light show using the branches of the Supertree Grove. There is a coherence with our installation, which plays with light and shadow.

We feel that the site is perfect for our installation as the narrative requires the users to ‘watch’ for a period of time, therefore choosing a site where people will go to rest will be ideal.

to be continued.

(10) Depreciation of the World – PROGRESS (1)





Based upon the common themes of the 3 projects merged into 1:

Dying Culture | Endangered Environment | Extinct Animals 


A Window to another Realm.




Depletion of animals in Singapore due to constant emergence of buildings and clearing of land to accommodate growing human population.

To raise awareness of the endangered species of animals in Singapore and the environment through an interactive screen-based installation. To send a message that questions Human Methods through Human Interactions.


An interactive screen-based installation that makes use of Shadow Gestures from the users, to form an interactive narrative that dictates the balance/ imbalance of constant human activities versus wildlife through the user’s interaction.


Environment + Animals + Human Interaction = Circle of Life

+ Use of human experience by human interaction through shadow gestures of animals/ trees.

+ Different types of shadow gestures to showcase different types of animals / trees.

+ Screen captures the shadow gestures and translates the form of animal/ tree into the narrative screen that depicts another realm. Visuals consist of silhouettes of animals / trees.

+ Users are able to experience the interaction of wildlife in their natural habitat through the depiction of the other realm in the screen.

+ Screen also serves as an interaction platform. Touching the animals will show animation of the animal dodging user. Touching the trees will turn them into buildings. This depicts the poetic notion of human intervention in the environment through literal human touch.

+ Sustaining the experience of balance between the wildlife and the modern technology of buildings will warrant users to keep ‘planting’ animals and trees into the realm whilst trees will continue to transform into man-made architectures like buildings, HDB Flats etc.

+ As such, with more buildings sprouting, the animals will disappear. Eventually, the buildings overwhelm the wildlife and constant sprout will eventually fill the screen as black.

+ End of one cycle with a text that raises awareness (TBC)

+ A renewed life cycle begins

Takeaways from Class Session

+ Refining types of Animals

+Identifying trees

+Research of endangered animals

+Identifying shadow gestures

+Placement of Installation

to be continued.

(7+8) Future World and more

Part 1: Write a response to the exhibition “Future World”.  Keep in mind the following questions – What is experience design and what are the possibilities of responsive environments? How might this change the way we think about the world around us and the ways that we communicate with each other?

The visit to the “Future World” was nothing short of awesome. Having already seen a lot of Instagram updates and heard experiences field trips last semester from my peers, I was really looking forward to the visit.

The dark hallway throughout the exhibition gave off a really mysterious vibe, as of the interesting surround sound of soothing musics and effects, which really enhanced the atmosphere of the exhibition.

The first exhibit of blooming flowers that we were led into by the guide seemed really dull at first. Initially I had thought it was a mere 4D installation. Only through explanations by the guide was I really taken away by the really subtle haptic functions! The act of petals wilting and butterflies dying through touch really amazed me so much that it left me quite a big impression, and is one of my favourites of the exhibition. This idea of subtlety is really interesting and incredible as I got to experience first hand the marvel of experience design and responsive environment. Another exhibit that amazed me was the use of technology and 4d installations to create an immersive playground, and I see a lot of genuinely happy kids playing around with the installations (especially the hopscotch installation).

The very experience of touching the interactive screen and to look at the response of how it transform is nothing new today due to the influx of our daily usages of touch-screens devices. However, the added aspect of scale and space made the experience into a different kind of amazing. The idea of 4d really transcend the whole experience into another world, of which I almost felt like I have traveled into another space.

This experience made me think of the unlimited possibilities of experience design. And how much such technology will be able to increase value in our lives in the near future. For instance, the immersive experience of simulations in a totally different setting, or even an augmented reality gaming experience! Another possibility is the new experience of video call, whereby through 4d interaction design, can allow long distance communication to feel so much closer.

Part 2: Start to work on final project proposals – prepare three ideas for a screen-based experience that you’d like to create (it can be speculative). Prepare a slide show to illustrate your ideas. The ideas can be based on any of the field trips done so far or can be something completely new.

1. Ghost Finder Game


ghhIn light of the upcoming Halloween theme, a screen based game application that captures your surrounding and changes it to a horror game where you need to find the ghost.

2. Live Advertisement

advvvvA screen based advertisement board that reacts to passers-by.

3. Live Musical Box

mbppp9wayang-kulit-2Inspired by the art performace of Wayang Kulit. A screen based jukebox that performs while the music is played as a performance in the form of a string puppet.

Part 3: Find 3 examples of a product/project that you think are good examples of thoughtfully designed user experience. Be prepared to support your choices.

1. Lifestraw.



2. Drone.


3. Gorenje by Starck.



Part 4, Reading: CH01_Digital_Age_Goodwin.pdf

Even though the chapter talks about ‘Goal directed design’ for interactive design, the methods and processes mentioned in the chapter is really effective for all kinds of designs and for designers to follow through.

The principles for ‘Goal directed design’ is pretty rigid, but fairly broad in the sense that the framework acts only as a general guideline that is helpful. I feel that the first 2 steps mentioned are really essential in finding the right design direction. In ‘design planning’ and ‘research’, the designer is able to formulate a direction to act upon through ethnographic research.

One constant that I found in the ‘Goal directed design’ principles, that coincide with other design thinking strategies is the role of question. Questioning people about a problem, questioning with fellow designers, and questioning oneself. This is because the design process is one which involves the designer to create something for someone. In that sense, the designer has the power, in him being the ‘master creator’. One questioning strategy is the ‘play-acting’ approach mentioned in the chapter. I think one important question I always ask myself when ideating an idea is whether I would use the finalised design myself, or not? Therefore the ‘play-acting’ approach in ‘questioning’ is a really important and essential.

One takeaway from the chapter is the quote, “What designers must excel at is looking at a blank surface and filling it with believable representations of an end product, so that other people can see, understand and eventually build it.”(chapter 1, page3). This shows the potential of a design process, that the current solution may not be final, but can be built upon.

(6) Day1/ Day2

Over a two-day period, do the following:
DAY 1 – create a diary of when, why and what you use your mobile device for. Observe how others are using their mobile devices. What are the most common uses and where do you see these behaviors?

DAY 2 – Do not use your phone, computer or electronic device for 24 hours. Create a diary documenting and describing the difference in your behavior patterns. How did you do the things you would normally do with your phone? What other alternative behaviors did you develop? What else did you notice about the difference in behavior?


Wednesday. 14/9/16

As I woke up from my slumber, I reached for the floor to pick up my mobile phone with my eyelids still shut. I stared blankly straight at the lighted screen of the phone, my eyes already acclimatised to the strain of the bright screen long before. I checked the time, battery meter to see that it is fully charged, and the familiar news of zero new notification. 6.24am. It was still early. I went back to dreamland.

An hour later, I had just bathed and changed. I sat down on the sofa in the Living Room and took out my mobile phone from my pocket. I casually pressed on the Facebook app, swiped upwards and then downwards, then returned back to the home screen to tab on another app as I munched on the sandwich my Mother prepared. As I leave my house for school, I  plugged in the EarPods to my mobile phone and listened to my playlist. I commuted to school with the EarPods firmly intact to my eardrums. Only when I reached the classroom did I unplug the EarPods and sat on an empty seat. 

Lesson was dry. As my focus was draining out, I quietly took out my mobile phone to the ‘Pokemon Shuffle’ game app. I cleared 2 levels. I put the phone back in the pocket. I tried to refocus. Professor starts talking about an interesting topic. I took out the mobile phone again to the notes app and take down some interesting points. After which, I put it back into my pocket. Then, my phone vibrated in my pocket. I took it out again to see an advertisement message. I shrugged as I put it back in the pocket. 

Lesson ended, I made my way to the Canteen with my friend for lunch. After we found vacant seats, I sat on the seat as my friend went to order. I instantly took out my mobile phone to the Facebook app. Again I swiped upwards then downwards to see the same posts I saw in the morning. I then did the same with the ‘Instagram’ app. I then exited the app to open the ‘ESPN' app. It was Champions League Night the morning before. I read the scores. My friend returned holding onto the tray of a pipping hot bowl. I placed the mobile phone back into my pocket as I proceeded to order my lunch.

After lunch, I bid my friend farewell as I fished for the EarPods in my bag. Again, I plugged in the EarPods to my mobile phone and listened to my playlist as I commuted back home. Along the way, I opened my ‘Pokemon GO’ app to clock the distance needed to hatch my eggs. 

I reached home and switched on my laptop to begin work on my assignments. I turned to my mobile phone to check the time. Naturally, I opened the ‘Youtube’ app. I proceeded to ‘relax’ for a while and watched a video off the recommended list, my laptop left idle. What a lie. I felt a doze of drowsiness. 3 hours passed, I woke up with my phone on my tummy. I checked the time, and notification. My friend had buzzed me through ‘whatsapp’. I replied. I finally started work on the laptop. 

Work was exhausting. I had deviated again, but this time with my laptop on the ‘Facebook’ browser. I picked up my phone and subconsciously click  on the ‘Facebook’ app within the phone. I see the exact same updates. I put the phone away and continued work.

Yet again, a doze of drowsiness whizzed by. I told myself I would rest my eyes for a while. What a lie.

My usage of mobile phone is collated into a pie chart as follows.


I realised that I had used my phone for really essential tasks like checking the time since I do not wear a watch. Also, messages and calling allow me to stay connected with my friends at our own comforts. The mobile phone also allowed my daily commute to be more manageable with music accompany and games. The mobile phone also served as a distraction from my daily work which leads to procrastination. It seems the task of clicking the same app repeatedly had become a really bad habit, albeit silly.

In relation to observing people when they are using their mobile phones, I find that most of the usage of mobile phone comes during the time of commute. People are seen using their mobile phone for music, video watching, social media updates etc.


As (bad)luck would have it, the HDB upgrade renovation has commence at my house. As the toilets and kitchen are being renovated, the power supply in my house had to be cut off from 8am-6pm. 


Saturday. 17/9/16

My Mother had woken me up. I looked up to the wall clock. 7.30am. In my half awake state, I went downstairs to bathe in the temporary toilet.

As I finished my breakfast, the construction workers began entering my house to continue with their work. I placed my phone in my drawer, said goodbye to my Family members and left the house with my bag for the library.

As I walked to the MRT station, I was pleasantly taken away by the serene atmosphere. I was able to hear the bustling of the cars that whizzed by, the wind, and footsteps of people. Upon reaching the MRT station, I looked up at the screen to the next arrival MRT, and the time. The commute to Jurong East was relatively quiet. Without my music blasting in my eardrums, I I shifted my focus to observing the other passengers on board. Some where staring blankly to the moving scene outside, while most were preoccupied with the screen of their mobile devices. I peeked into the closest passengers’ screens. Facebook and Instagram feeds. On top of the repeated message from the speaker above, I listened to the muffled sounds that escaped out of one passenger’s earpiece, and the casual conversation(filled with vulgarities) of another passenger. 

I reached the Jurong Regional Library, of which was relatively empty except for the librarians and students who have already occupied the tables. I went up to the second level and rested on the vacant chair for a while. I then picked up the book from my bag and proceed to reading it. Almost all at once, drowsiness began to creep into my head. I tried to refocus but soon drifted off...As I woke up, I wanted to check for the time. This was when I realised the library did not have a wall clock. I went to the e-kiosk to check the time. 11.43am. I went back to my seat and continued reading.

Reading was difficult. I was rather distracted by any small movement of the other people in the library, of which by now was rather packed. I found myself unconsciously tapping on my pocket, before realising that I had left my phone at home. Hums of songs started ringing in my head. I stretched my arms out as I decided to leave my seat and take a walk around. I left my bag on the seat. I went to the e-kiosk again to check the time.

4.45pm. I needed to leave for my part-time job. I packed my bag and left for Queenstown. The train is relatively packed. Along the commute, I continued reading the books. However, I was distracted by the bustling conversations of the passengers. I found myself subconsciously counting down the seconds as to when the door would close at each station. When I arrived at my station, I realised I hadn’t read a single page off my book. 

I reached work earlier than expected. I see the time on the e-finger scan. 5.31pm. I changed into my workwear and made coffee at the pantry. I saw my colleague and chatted. Finally, I started work.

Work was mundane. Usually in between work, I would casually take out my mobile phone to social media updates. This time, I only had my book. I picked it up and looked at the wall clock in the office. 3 hours to knock off. I put my book down again as I went for my dinner break. I gorged down my plate of rice, and slept the rest of the hour away. I went back to work. Now and then I would subconsciously question myself as to why my pants feel lighter, before tapping my empty pocket and realising again that my phone is not with me.

Finally I finished work. I changed and finger scanned-out of work. By then, the Sun had already set. I walked down the familiar path to the MRT station. Usually, I would make use of the time to hatch my eggs from the 'Pokemon Go’ game app while listening to my playlist. This time, I just walked hurriedly to the MRT Station.

The commute back home was similar to what I had experienced. Except the train filled with an air of alcohol. The train was jam-packed with passengers. I stared blankly as I waited to alight at my stop. The ride did feel slightly longer without my music and social media distractions.

I reached home and went downstairs to bathe. It was a long day. Before I even realised, I drifted off to dreamland.

Day 2 was difficult. I made use of the weekend as I could give my laptop a rest. Without music, I found myself hearing a lot of background sounds. Commute felt slightly longer than usual without the distractions from social media, and I found myself counting down the stops. One interesting discovery is the absence of a wall clock in the library. Also, throughout the day, I subconsciously tapped my pocket to recall my absent phone. It made me realise how much of a ‘necessity’ mobile phone has integrated into my daily life, much like spectacles (of which I would subconsciously tap my nose bridge even on days I wore contact lenses). Time was another problem as I don’t own a watch. I realised that I had to source for available structures in order to tell time.

The commence of renovation at my house had pushed myself to the library (of which is not regular). I thought about the instance if I were to carry out this activity in the comfort of my home, what would be the outcome? Probably, I would lie on the sofa with my book and then sail to dreamland for the rest of the day. This actually made me rethink of the ‘distractions’ mobile phones possess. Do these ‘distractions’ really distract me, or are these made a scapegoat for my procrastinations?

(6) a thoughtful designer

Reading: CH 1 from Jonas Löwgren and Erik Stolterman, Thoughtful Interaction Design

This chapter explores the qualities of being a thoughtful designer. A thoughtful designer is one who tackles the challenge of design with utmost care and concern and be reflective of the actions of the entire design process, or design knowledge construction.

One interesting point mentioned is that the design outcomes are mostly consequences of mistakes or lack of knowledge, and that the process of design and outcome can never be perfect. I feel that this is true as the whole process of design is rather complex and as designers, we may not be necessarily equipped with the required knowledge of smaller aspects within the whole structure of design. Point of reflection enables us as designers to reflect upon the entire process and probe further to tackle the unforeseen issues with better solutions, previously unknown to us. A good design as written in the chapter may not be reflected in any particular designs, but the courage to challenge constraints and one’s ability to grow.

As the chapter moves towards digital technology of which digital artefacts “without qualities” results. The challenge of digital technology is that the advancement of technology is evolving at a pace too rapid for reflection. It is mentioned that reflection is still essential as the designer upholds the ‘power to create’. I feel that this is true as the rapid advancement of technology has lead to a shortened shelf-life of digital artefacts, and that it will be rapidly become obsolete, replaced and forgotten. Mobile phones come to mind, with the permutations of countless models rapidly replaced within such a short timeframe. However, reflections have been evident too, such as creating a ‘newer version’ or through ‘updates’.

I have also learnt the scale and magnitude of a designer as responsibility is a core trait of a good designer. Whatever we design can have a bigger impact, and we have to be held responsible for what we design. The skills for design thinking is important to be integrated in our core, as designer. Interaction design is too becoming an integral part in design, and we too as designers have to integrate it into our design process, as well as look for methods and techniques to think about and reflect. I feel that design thinking as a process is nothing new as our journey as designers will have used some methods, but the core traits of being responsible is important to be instilled within us as designer.

Q1. The idea of a good design challenges the designer based on the process of critical thinking, but how much of the final design outcome plays a part in the judgement for good design?

Q2. In today’s advancement of technology, how much more of a digital artefact can be pushed to be utilised in today’s context?


(5) Carrying behaviour / Hologram

Part 1: Read Ch. 4 from Chipchase Hidden in Plain Sight.  Write a response and two questions and post it by midnight on Saturday to OSS.

The reading this week touches upon the behaviour of people to their belongings. The subjects being discussed are really relatable and interesting to rediscover, as I did.

As I was reading the chapter whilst commuting back from school, I naturally reached for my school bag as I try to uncover what is in my bag. Firstly, I realised that I had my laptop clutched very closely to me using my arm as I held onto my iPhone on one hand (I was reading the passage through it). My bag was placed on the ground in between my legs. As I would find out later, my range of distribution is pretty short. Anyway as I proceeded to check my bag, I realised that almost all the stuff in my bag were redundant. Apart from my laptop, I almost didn’t use any of the stuff I brought to school. My water bottle was still mostly filled (I had purchased 2 drinks from the vending machine), I had a notebook and a foolscap pad, and a file filled with notes from different modules. Also, my pencil case was filled with 5 pens. I realised all these does is merely to keep my sanity at ease, which is pointed within the chapter as the point of reflection.

It is mentioned that the redundancy is an opportunity to make the system more efficient. Digitalised platforms offered solutions by allowing people opportunities to carry less. Examples given are mostly used in Japan like the fare service. However, the same solution worked really differently in a really different society, of which Afghanistan has shown in the example of M-Pasia whereby if you can’t see it, you don’t own it. Another point to ponder in carrying less, is the question are we truly carrying less? Think about the coils of wires we are inclined to bring along with us, portable chargers, plugs etc.

Seemingly, another proposed solution is the idea of rental rather than owning through mesh. Whereby the idea of not owning is attractive as responsibilities are shared. An example would be AirBnB, whereby rents of   apartments are able to be made over a large distance over continents.

Ultimately at the end of the chapter, it is mentioned that the whole point of advancing digitalise technology is to aid in our survival. However, as human beings, we already have traits of adaptability inbuilt in us. In fact,  through adaptability had enabled our evolution into who we are today and what we are capable of. One point to pick is the  over-reliance  of technology (as our eyes are seemingly stuck onto the screens of smartphones) necessary a good thing? I find myself over relying upon technology so much, it actually scares me. For instance, times where I forgot the meaning of the words, I would almost skip the notion of thinking, and go straight to google. Now with the advancement of technology being able to ‘guess’ or ‘recommend’ our experience based on our digital footprints, how much of a decision can we make in the future?

Q1. In the notion of carrying less, technology has played a fundamental part in reducing the number of items carried. However, Is there a limit in technology where it becomes too much and in it lead to being a hindrance in our physical reality?

Q2. As adaptable beings, how much has the influx of technology influence/ limit our thinking?

Part 2: Based on the lecture on Place, Location and Ubiquitous technology, post an example of a product, service or design concept and post it on OSS.

This week’s lecture about Place, Location and Ubiquitous technology has been interesting to see the myriad possibilities of infusing technology into and to aid in our everyday lives.

One interesting idea is ‘hololens’ hologram whereby the use of augmented reality is really pushed to the limits.