Abstract

The widespread proliferation of the internet-of-things (IoT) has led to the shift in focus from the technology itself to the way in which technology affects the social world. Being inspired by the emerging intersection between actor network theory and co-design, this paper emphasizes the role of participation in designing IoT-based technologies by suggesting alternative ways to appropriate IoT into people’s lives. It is argued that prototyping becomes crucial for designing IoT-based technologies where the invisible aspects of “agency” and “autonomy” are highlighted while still drawing on its full capabilities. In that, the value of tinkering and exploration are seen as ways to experiment with and constitute one’s subjectivities in relation to IoT-based technologies. Taking these points into consideration, it is suggested that there is a need to move towards a cosmopolitics of design where aesthetics and materialisation of technology also act as inquiries into issues of performance and social meaning-making.

Keywords:

participation; engagement; design; internet-of-things

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License

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Jun 17th, 12:00 AM

The Role of Participation in Designing for IoT

The widespread proliferation of the internet-of-things (IoT) has led to the shift in focus from the technology itself to the way in which technology affects the social world. Being inspired by the emerging intersection between actor network theory and co-design, this paper emphasizes the role of participation in designing IoT-based technologies by suggesting alternative ways to appropriate IoT into people’s lives. It is argued that prototyping becomes crucial for designing IoT-based technologies where the invisible aspects of “agency” and “autonomy” are highlighted while still drawing on its full capabilities. In that, the value of tinkering and exploration are seen as ways to experiment with and constitute one’s subjectivities in relation to IoT-based technologies. Taking these points into consideration, it is suggested that there is a need to move towards a cosmopolitics of design where aesthetics and materialisation of technology also act as inquiries into issues of performance and social meaning-making.

 

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