Bringing Aesthetic Interaction into Creativity-Centered Design: The Second Generation of mixDroid Prototypes

Bringing Aesthetic Interaction into Creativity-Centered Design: The Second Generation of mixDroid Prototypes

Flávio Miranda de Farias (Amazon Center for Music Research (NAP), Federal Institute of Science and Technology of Acre, Rio Branco, Brazil), Damián Keller (Amazon Center for Music Research (NAP), Federal University of Acre, Rio Branco, Brazil), Victor Lazzarini (Maynooth University, Maynooth, Ireland) and Maria Helena de Lima (Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, Brazil)
Copyright: © 2015 |Pages: 20
DOI: 10.4018/JCIT.2015100104

Abstract

The authors discuss a series of experimental studies targeting ubiquitous musical activities. The studies explore the application of time tagging as an aesthetically oriented interaction design metaphor. A new support mechanism is proposed: the stripe. The stripe works as an entry point to the sound data providing a functional unit that features both interaction and audio manipulation. A new prototype based on the stripe metaphor was implemented. Twenty four subjects participated in the assessment of three creative sonic products produced with and without support for time tagging. Results indicate that – provided equivalent conditions – creative products obtained through asynchronous activities demand a larger temporal investment but do not necessarily yield more creative outcomes. The authors discuss the implications of these results for aesthetically aware interaction design.
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Interaction Aesthetics

In 2005, Udsen and Jørgensen stated: “at present, the aesthetic turn is not a full-fledged shift in paradigm. However, it is undoubtedly an indication of a new awareness of the wide-ranging dimensions of interaction between humans and computers.” We have reasons to believe this situation has changed, particularly within the practices of interaction design.

Interaction aesthetics is surfacing as a strong alternative to mainstream human-computer interaction theories and methods (Hällnas & Redström, 2007; Löwgren, 2007; Löwgren, 2009; Redström, 2007; Stolterman, 2008; Udsen & Jørgensen, 2005). Löwgren (2009) and Stolterman (2008) propose a shift in focus from task-oriented, utilitarian approaches to human-centred and experience-centred methods, described as a “rational, disciplined, designerly way.” (Stolterman, 2008). Redström (2007) suggests that a central idea is the need to create a richer relation to computational things, through the exploration of:

  • Engagement rather than efficiency;

  • Temporal patterns of behavior;

  • Alternative forms of design that challenge expectations;

  • User identities, cultural contexts and traditions, within specific design domains;

  • Innovative material combinations.

Despite the significant theoretical advances in interaction aesthetics, how to approach the variety of methodological issues raised by this perspective on technology is still an open question. In one of the initial studies in this area, Redström (2007) endorsed a radical change of focus: “how to design for living with, rather than just using, computational technology.” To design for everyday life involves more than supporting people to accomplish certain tasks effectively. Designs for usability and functionality are not sufficient. This broader view of interaction explores aspects for which the traditional usability assessment methods are incapable of providing useful information. New techniques are necessary.

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