Looking over my ‘recent’ posts (updates have, I know, been sporadic), this blog is beginning to resemble a series of trip reports. Maybe it’s time I posted some content about my work!
So, I started off by looking at pervasive technologies, and how we might use them to broaden people’s access to web-based services. Particularly, I was interested in re-providing the benefits offered by social facilities such as Facebook and the like.
What became apparent was that yes, it is possible to build a system to provide the functionality in question — but how would I ever demonstrate that I’d actually re-provided those social, emotional, intangible benefits associated with the original experiences?
That’s the point when my research took a slightly different turn! I was inspired by Alan Dix’s deconstruction, a method for understanding and re-providing experiences across different contexts (for example, from physical to digital). I’ve spent the last while considering how the deconstruction method can be formalised into a structured design technique. I’ve been calling the new approach TAPT, an acronym which refers to the two halves of the process: Teasing Apart, Piecing Together.
I’m about to run a reasonably-sized study (hopefully about 30 odd participants) to evaluate TAPT, comparing it against a few other approaches. This is the first big unit of research I’ve done during my degree (yes, it took over three years to get to this point!), so it’s an exciting time.