49713 Designing for the Internet of Things
· 25 members
A hands-on introductory course exploring the Internet of Things and connected product experiences.
With the prominence of social media applications that incorporate features such as live video streaming (Facebook live) and location tracking (Snapchat), the team envisioned a near future wearable, the Friendship Bracelet, that allows user to engage with their significant others through a live video feed that captures both the wearer and the wearers environment. This device is the near future of sharing your ‘status’, sending texts, and talking on the phone. With a tap of your own bracelet, you open a live video feed by way of your partners bracelet. You and your lover now have a window into each other's lives in an unprecedented way.
On the surface, a birds-eye view into your partners life seems like an appealing and desirable IoT functionality to bring people closer together through the perpetual sharing of live experiences and ‘selfies’. However, we see in our product video that more information sharing can have a darkside. What if you do not know when your partner is viewing your life through your live feed. What if you grab coffee with a friend at work and your partner takes this information the wrong way. Vivid information out of context paired with the emotions in any relationship can engender misunderstanding, distrust, and jealousy. Instead of promoting stronger relationship, this device can lead to stalking and paranoia. The Friendship Bracelet has the potential to tear people apart and change the way we think about trust, loyalty, and relationships forever.
The team envisioned a currently available object, but which had a potential to be advanced and developed into much more futuristic features. We benchmarked currently widely renowned Fitbit. Basically, we thought of a wearable that can be worn on daily basis, not the ones that you selectively wear. The team took a step further by not just having the device equipped with tracking function, but also has a camera attached to it. Designed for lovers, both partner would wear them to communicate with each other. Not only sending signals that notifies other partner that you are thinking about them, it has a camera function that allows other partner to livestream the partner camera’s point of view. Not having to ask them to send picture of what they are currently up to, one can easily get access to partner’s current situation. By showing each other transparency and trust, this device will allow the relationship to be more intimate.
Wearable technology is often touted as one of the greatest applications of the Internet of Things, and with good reason. Hence we wanted to consider wearable electronics that can be displayed on one's body that have the potential to transform the way we live. We brainstormed the various everyday objects we use and discussed on how IOT can be induced into a normal common item. The ideas included Wearable IOT buttons to smart glasses that could read one's mind. In the end we chose the wearable band which is enchanted inits own way.
The main idea was to create a modern stylish yet simplistic design that could be worn on any occasion. It was also meant to record the other person without anyone realizing that it has an inbuilt HD camera in it. The ideation process led us to create the various features as well such as face recognition from across the room, low light HD camera, 10 hours battery life and resistant to water and dust. Technology we can wear rarely looks this good. On the surface it's a sleek analog wrist watch that complements our wardrobe in any setting. It's versatile enough to wear to parties and business meetings. Behind the watch face is a hidden camera that records high definition video and audio
Ask for consent
One very problematic aspect of this imagined object is that it doesn’t ask each user for consent when sharing video. Just like in face-to-face romantic relationships, relationships sustained by technology must include consent from both parties. Currently, most softwares ask you to agree to their terms and services, but this is a different kind of consent than required in romantic relationships. However, consent in sexual relationships requires an “enthusiastic yes” each time. This model of consent must be reflected in our technologies as well.
Provide information only when necessary
One trend that our group saw in the Internet of Things industry is the overload of information. Designers of IoT objects seem to think that more information makek a product more useful and desirable. However, our situation illustrates the destructive nature of that idea. Especially in relationships, more information is not always better, and can lead to distrust and paranoia. We challenge designers to flip this idea on its head and provide information only when it is necessary. This is a harder design challenge, because designers must really know their user and what they want.
Do you want a window into your partners life? When information sharing is taken to the extreme, you may think twice.
February 19th, 2018