INTERACTIONS.ACM.ORG 82 INTERACTIONS JULY–AUGUST2017
FORUM DESIGN AS INQUIRY
9. Wakkary, R., Desjardins, A., and
Hauser, S. Unselfconscious interaction:
A conceptual construct. Interacting with
Computers 28, 4 (2015), 501–520; https://
Audrey Desjardins is an assistant
professor in the School of Art + Art History +
Design at the University of Washington. As a
design researcher, her work focuses on the
making of home, the design of technologies
for the home, do-it-yourself practices, and
methods in research through design.
Ron Wakkary is a professor in the School
of Interactive Arts and Technology (SIAT) at
Simon Fraser University and professor and
chair of the Impact of Interaction Design on
Everyday Life in the Department of Industrial
Design at Eindhoven University of Technology.
His research investigates the changing nature
of human-technology relations through design
research in everyday living.
William Odom is an assistant professor in
the School of Interactive Arts and Technology
(SIAT) at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver,
Canada. He leads projects themed within slow
interaction design, the growing presence
of digital data in everyday life, and methods
aimed at developing the practice of research
Henry Lin is a master of arts student in
the Everyday Design Studio at Simon Fraser
University. His research explores and develops
electronics and fabrication techniques for
both the Internet of Things and the notion
of a research product. He also has an
undergraduate degree in interaction design
from Simon Fraser University.
Markus Lorenz Schilling recently finished
his M. A. in interaction design research at
Simon Fraser University and is currently
working as a sessional instructor at Emily Carr
University in Vancouver, BC. He is interested in
projects that positively shape our relationship
with technology or that involve the creative use
of code and making.
The result is a highly polished photo set
(Figure 4). These photos stand out on
the Instructables platform, where the
majority of photos are taken on the go,
while projects are being built.
This distinction is interesting to reflect
on as it highlights the contrast
between the two communities
with respect to disseminating and
The table-non-table tutorial
generated a strikingly different
set of comments from the DIY
community when compared with
the van conversion tutorials. Since
it was published in January 2016,
the tutorial received comments that
often expressed confusion, surprise,
and misunderstanding. For example,
comments included: “Interesting,
but I can’t seem to think of anything
to use this for. It’s way too short to
be used as any sort of table,” “I’m
not sure what to ask. Cool though
lol,” and “Wow, I’m seriously
confused.” These comments reveal
a real challenge for disseminating
the crafting of an RtD artifact—
especially a counterfactual artifact—
on a platform meant for DI Y
enthusiasts. We realize that the table-non-table as an object on its own does
not showcase a clear enough purpose
and becomes difficult to make sense
of when presented in a context other
than research through design.
FINDING BALANCE BETWEEN
WAYS OF KNOWING
The contrasting examples of the
van conversion tutorials and the
table-non-table tutorial revealed the
challenge of sharing RtD artifacts to
a multiplicity of audiences: the DI Y
community and the RtD community.
This sparks the first question for us:
What would be the qualities needed
for a sharing platform for the crafting
of RtD artifacts among a design or
research community separate from the
DI Y community?
However, keeping the RtD DI Y
tutorials on the same platform for both
DI Y enthusiasts and RtD researchers
provides a valuable opportunity for
new kinds of discussions and dialogues
that led to research insights in the
van conversion case. For instance,
both researchers and amateurs
could use the tutorials to re-create
or remix RtD artifacts. This raises
several interesting future research
questions. What kinds of experiences
and insights could be catalyzed
through a DI Y enthusiast making and
living with a design artifact like the
table-non-table? What other kinds
of projects could the table-non-table
inspire DI Y enthusiasts to make?
To what extent would they differ from
projects made by RtD researchers?
What kind of insights can we, as RtD
researchers, gain from this crossover
to a DI Y community?
These questions represent intriguing
new ways in which DI Y tutorials could
be mobilized as we continue to seek
out new ways of disseminating
RtD artifacts to audiences in and
beyond the HCI and interaction
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DOI: 10.1145/3098319 COP YRIGHT HELD BY AUTHORS. PUBLICATION RIGHTS LICENSED TO ACM. $15.00