those that currently confront us
[ 19]; the vast complexity of many
people’s lives may contribute to
a lack of societal well-being via
cognitive overload [ 20]. By seeking to foster more direct paths to
meeting human needs, adaptation informatics may also find
new ways to make people happy.
This article is based on the possibility that global change is imminent,
and that industrial civilizations may
need to adapt dramatically in the
coming decades, rather than indefinitely continuing the growth that
has been its hallmark for much of
the past two centuries. We propose
that it is now appropriate for HCI
researchers to begin exploring how
our discipline may help to address
the problems that would likely arise
in such scenarios.
Work in these areas would seek to
serve basic human needs, situated
in particular contexts and habitats.
There are many efforts afoot across
many disciplines to enable sustainability; however, these efforts are
often diametrically opposed to the
culture of growth and consumption
that pervades industrialized society. Perhaps by thinking now about
life after global change, humanity
may avoid some of the worst consequences of those transformations.
Modifying a quote from John Michael
Greer, “Adapt now and avoid the
rush” [ 21].
The authors wish to thank Charles
Hughes, Alex Stringfellow, and Ron
Wakkary for their help with and support of this article. This material is
based upon work supported in part by
the National Science Foundation under
Grant No. 0644415 and by the Alfred P.
Sloan Foundation. Portions of this article
adapted from [ 8] and [ 14].
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ABOUT THE AUTHORS
Bill Tomlinson is an associate professor of informatics at the
University of California, Irvine, and
a researcher in the California
Institute for Telecommunications
and Information Technology.
Donald J. Patterson is an associate professor in the Department of
Informatics at University of
California, Irvine and the director
of the Laboratory for Ubiquitous
Computing and Interaction.
Yue Pan is a Ph.D. student in the
Design program at Indiana
University. She has a background
in computer science and her area
of research is sustainable interac-
Eli Blevis is an associate profes- sor of informatics in the Human- Computer Interaction Design pro- gram of the School of Informatics and Computing at Indiana University, Bloomington. Bonnie Nardi is a professor at UC Irvine and the author of Ethnography and Virtual Worlds: A Handbook of Method (with T. Boellstorff, C. Pearce, and T.L. Taylor, Princeton Univ. Press, 2012) and My Life as a Night Elf Priest: An Anthropological Account of World of Warcraft (Univ. of Michigan Press, 2010). Six Silberman is a field interpreter with the Bureau of Economic Interpretation and co-maintainer of the Turkopticon service. He contributes to research and prac- tice on environment-human-tech- nology relations and labor rela- tions in crowd work.
Juliet Norton is a doctoral student in the computer science program at the University of Central Florida. She devotes her technical skills to the well-being of the earth and its inhabitants.
Joseph J. LaViola Jr. is an associate professor in the Department of
Electrical Engineering and
Computer Science and directs the
Interactive Systems and User
Experience Lab at the University
of Central Florida.
November + December 2012
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