PART 1: Reading Response

The four drivers – security, convenience, reliability and peace of mind which the author listed out as the fundamentals on which we decide what to carry in our bags is essentially what majority of the urbanites would base their daily decisions on as well. For example, where to stay or what to eat. Most people would want to stay in a well connected area with low crime rate and established with shops or marketplaces. When it comes to food, we generally want food that would not poison us and would not require us to run after chickens for their meat. Hence, the four drivers are very applicable and useful to help us understand the user’s point of view in the design of any product or service.

How does

  • range of distribution (distance that people are willing to let physical objects stray)
  • owner’s sense of object value (project or protect it)
  • centers of gravity
  • point of reflection
  • redundant compensation

influence the way we design things that are meant to be portable? These are carrying behaviors that differ for different objects. By observing and understanding the thought behind how people treat different objects, we  can design to change messy behaviors or cater the design to fit into such behaviors so that it becomes inclusive and more people would use it.

Something that caught my attention was when the author said,

Now, just because you can easily fit all those things in your pocket doesn’t mean you constantly need them … … And simply because you can reduce them to bytes doesn’t mean you’re ready to get rid of their tangible forms.

I feel that when it comes to decision on what we carry or own, emotional values that we attribute to that object plays a significant role as well. Even when we refer to what’s digitalis-ed like phone applications, I’m sure there are some applications in our phones that we don’t use as often but just leave it there. However, when it  comes to cloud storage, the emotional values attributed to what we upload might be diminished. This is because the storage space available seems infinite, we won’t need to weigh, compare and choose what we want to keep anymore, just dump everything online. In this way, the frequency where we think about what we really need decreases and we just keep everything.

Question 1: Are emotional values attributed to things subjective? What are ways in which we can influence it?

Question 2: Will we be able to accurately and efficiently predict and expect user behavior online if users are spammed with an even greater amount of choices? (they could just be mindlessly clicking instead of really thinking about what is it they want)


PART 2: Place, Location and Ubiquitous technology

solar FREAKIN roadways.

The way the guy speaks is really quite annoying.

But the thought of having smart roads is really exciting. These roads will be able to take care of themselves (melting snow and ice, alerting us if there are damages, customized to transform into a new space and improve visibility and safety). If made from recycled materials, it will really help us resolve to a great extent what we could with the plastics that we can’t get rid of.

LUNA: smart mattress

I really liked this one because I’m going to wake up at the right side of the bed every morning with coffee waiting for me. I think it encompass very nicely what ubiquitous technology is about – everyday objects communicating with each other, without a need for us to interfere and improving our lives.