Went to the Steve Gill talk on research and design and the interaction with computers including all devices etc mobile phones. The talk was interesting, I learned that medical computational technology design is led by its ability to be programmed not necessarily to be used. Hence case of deaths by human error on infusion machines in hospital. Good design is often a result of designing for those on the margins of society, e.g. large numbers on telephones designed for blind people was one of the most commercially successful phones. There is an irony here that products designed to open jam jars instead of redesigning the jam jar. Two design projects were particularly memorable for me; the jug which you can read without having lift the jug and the interactive teapot designed by Ingrid Murphy was a brilliant research project, simple practical and useful.
I found the section of the talk on Rob Pepperell relating to PEL Perception Experience Laboratory very interesting. The link with Art History and the way that artist depicted the world as opposed to how a camera would have recorded the scene and investigated the differences. By creating a room with grids on the wall he reproduced the image by drawing and by photography. Vision is avery interesting sense, the discovery that what we look at/focus on changes in size. We do not notice this as we can only focus on one object at a time. The photographed object appears smaller than when viewed by the human eye, the peripheral vision of the human eye is also much larger the the photographed image. Paintings and images edit out the body even though we can always see it in our line of sight. The PEL environment changes projected images to recreate what the human eye sees along with sound and smell can simulate real life environment allowing for product testing which is currently carried out in laboratories not reflecting the real world experience. Links here to some of the writings by Ponty on perception.