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Experience: Designing for Complexity

Experiences emerge in and from the interactions of people, places, objects, information and media. And people hardly ever interact with only one ‘thing’ in one tidy and orderly situation at a time. On the contrary, the world is messy and people mix and mingle. People interact with multiple things, in shifting environments and in various social constellations. This poses great challenges for the design and development of technology (as well as for the design and development of a lot of other things). The challenge is to design for complexity.

Focusing on human experience – and indeed designing for human experience – makes it possible and necessary for researchers and designers to cross boundaries and inquire into the complex combinations of people and things, places, information, media, objects and services.

Putting experience center stage makes it possible to interrogate the complex entanglements of the  hyper-designed worlds we inhabit. Which worlds are we creating? What life-forms are we cultivating?

Read about transcending singular design fields through experience design.

Virtual Reality, Learning and Experience Seminar

Experience Lab and Centre for Virtual Learning Technologies together have organised a seminar on Virtual Reality, Learning and Experience. 120 participants will hear 7 state of the art presentations and engage hands-and headsets- on with some amazing examples of how VR is used across education, industry, culture and research.

With the seminar, we focus on learning and experience as integral parts of any Virtual Reality- activity. The background for the seminar is that the Danish Ministry of Higher Education and Science in 2018 awarded Roskilde University a DKK 20 million extraordinary grant for developing virtual learning technologies, more specifically for exploring the use of virtual reality simulations in science education. The seminar aims to open up this research and development to a larger audience.

With the grant, Roskilde University is implementing, developing and researching VR- and 3D-simulations at the Bachelor in Natural Sciences programme within a timeframe from 2018 to 2021. Virtual Reality laboratory simulations are being integrated into undergraduate natural sciences curricula. This ties in with there being a broad political interest in creating and maintaining interest in the natural and technical sciences. Which isn’t easy:  there are substantial problems in persuading young people to choose the science, technology, engineering and math areas of education – and it is equally difficult to retain the students who actually do choose to study natural or technical sciences.

STEM promotion through VR

This attention to STEM is part of the background for the political investment in virtual technologies for learning. The idea is that innovative learning experiences can help create interest in the natural and technical sciences – and help maintain this interest. One of the ideas in marrying STEM education with new information and communication technologies is the belief that such technologies have the capacity to create stimulating learning experiences.

However, there are intriguing experience design challenges to this.

Even though VR hardware, simulations, and content applications become more and more accessible it seems that the users’ VR experience varies considerably. This is due to the varying quality of content, and it is also due to the scattered knowledge of the actual challenges of VR experience in real-world situations and in different fields of application. Designing for good virtual reality experiences involves substantial design complexity.

VR Experience Design Challenges: Embodiment, Sociality and Physical Environment

One obvious and important design issue, of course, is the design of the actual application – the content with which the user engages. This is challenging in itself. To design good content. Add on top of this all of the stuff that goes on beyond the VR headset. From an experience-design research perspective, this means for example addressing the body – what happens to the body in Virtual Reality experiences? And the social situation. What kinds of social situation do virtual reality learning experiences create? Furthermore: What role does the exterior physical infrastructure play?

And in relation to the goal and ambition of using virtual reality in higher education in designs for learning – what role does the organizational infrastructure play? Which demands does teaching through virtual reality place on professors, on students and on the institution in terms of technical setup, maintenance and support?

Transdisciplinary Approaches

With the seminar on Virtual Reality, Learning and Experience, we share and develop knowledge on these important dimensions of experience designs for learning through virtual reality.

The organizing committee consists of researchers and educators from across the natural, technical, human and social sciences – iterating transdisciplinarity – one of the founding principles of Roskilde University and the conviction that ‘no major problems are resolved on the basis of any single academic discipline alone’. It is our contention that the inclusion of multiple perspectives on the subject matter helps steer clear of too simplistic assumptions – for example about how learning emerges or about the relationship between experience and technology.

Organizing committee

Connie Svabo, Performance Design, ExperienceLab

Søren Larsen, Virtual Learning Technologies

Ates Gürsimsek, Designer, ExperienceLab

Eduardo Abrantes, Artistic Researcher, ExperienceLab

John Gallagher, Computer Science, ExperienceLab

Per Meyer Jepsen, Biology, Virtual Learning Technologies

Prajakt Pande, Learning Sciences, Virtual Learning Technologies

Sisse Siggaard Jensen, CommunicationStudies, ExperienceLab

Troels Andreasen, Computer Science, ExperienceLab

Virtual Reality, Learning and Experience Seminar

Creative Writing in Experience Research

Experience Lab will host the final of the

Spring 2019 Art-based Research Methodology Workshops

Tuesday May 21 at 10-12 am. at Experience Lab, Roskilde University.

 

The program will consist of two parts:

We will share our experiences on Creative Writing in Experience Research

We will do some writing experiments

 

Reading materials are:

Susana Tosca (2019) Utopian social media, Digital Creativity,

DOI: 10.1080/14626268.2019.1612761

 

Michael Shanks & Connie Svabo (2018) Scholartistry: Incorporating Scholarship and Art

DOI: https://doi.org/10.5278/ojs.jpblhe.v6i1.1957

 

You are welcome!

 

A Thesis Writing Landscape (collage, photographed)
by Performance Design student Linh Tuyet Le, 2017.
Published in the article Shanks & Svabo (2018) Scholartistry: Incorporating Scholarship and Art

Virtual Reality, Robotics and Urban Space

Get-together April 11th, 2019

Roskilde University, bldg. 40.0

10.30 – 12.00     Virtual Reality, Learning and Experience – planning of seminar which will take place August 21, 2019 at RUC. Save the date!! This seminar is organized as a collaboration between RUC Center for Virtual Learning and Experience Lab. If you want to hear more and/or to contribute to the seminar, you are welcome to join the organizers at this planning meeting.

12.00 – 13.00     Open and informal lunch where we will talk about virtual reality learning experiences, robotics and design & art-based research. Meet the RUC VR and Natural Science Learning researchers Prajakt Pande and Per Meyer Lassen. Also meet robotics and communications scholar Frauke Zeller– as well as a host of other inspiring and interesting RUC researchers! Please do sign up before April 8th, so we can order an appropriate amount of food. You are welcome.

13.00 – 14.30     Talk on Robotics Mediating Urban Space, with Frauke Zeller, Associate Professor at Ryerson University, followed by a short speculative robotics workshop, facilitated by Frauke Zeller and Susana Tosca, Associate Professor, Roskilde University.

Frauke Zeller has a range of great projects to tell about – among others the hitchbot project which received a lot of attention: http://www.hitchbot.me/

Hope to see you!

Connie Svabo, Søren Larsen, Susana Tosca

 

Mediation, Space and Media Ecology

Online Reading Group

This semester, Experience Lab is hosting an online reading group on Media ecology, mediation and spatiality. The next session is May 10th 2019

The reading group is an informal, online, transdisciplinary gathering.

The joint inquiry is how physical environments can be understood as media of information and communication; how media (in a broad sense) can be seen as environments, or as co-constitutive of spatial experience.

We are at present particularly exploring media ecology as umbrella term and approach and exploring its connections to post-phenomenology and (post-) actor-network theory and the concept of mediation, found in these approaches.

Literature for zoom session May 10th 2019

Media Ecology in Michel Serres’ Philosophy of CommunicationMedia Ecology Serres

Timothy Barker Techné: Research in Philosophy and Technology 19 (1):50-68 (2015)

Michel Serres Angels: Angels (suggested reading p 38-58)

Join Online meeting: Time: May 10, 2019 1:00 PM Copenhagen

Join from PC, Mac, Linux, iOS or Android:    https://deic.zoom.us/j/710043863

 

This semester, Experience Lab will host an online ’reading group’ on Media ecology, mediation and spatiality.

The reading group discussions take place online in zoom.

Participants are expected to have read the literature for the session.

Media ecology, mediation and spatiality

Reading and discussion of literature contributing to our understanding of how physical environments can be understood as media of communication and information – and how media (in a broad sense) can be seen as environments.

The online discussions are organized by Associate Professor, PhD Connie Svabo and PhD candidate Signe Lykke Littrup. Their shared interest in digital / actual intertwinements in museum exhibition experiences, informs the inquiries.

The meeting is open for everyone. The meeting will be in English or Danish, depending on the participants. Collaborators and students are welcome – share the link.

See you

Connie og Signe

 

Overview of sessions

Media ecology 11/2 (at 13-14)

McLuhan & Fiore, from ”The Medium is the Massage” – p. 1-90

Cali, D.D.: Mapping Media Ecology – Introduction to the Field, Chaper 1: What is Media Ecology?, pp. 1-16, Peter Lang Publishing, 2017

Mediation 11/3 (at 1-2pm)

Verbeek et al.: Technological Environmentality: conceptualizing technology as a Mediating Milieu

VR, AR & Mixed Realities? 11/4 (at 1-2pm)

Will most probably be combined with a full day seminar on Virtual Reality, Learning and Experience. Format and reading to be decided

Michel Serres’ ontology of mediation as media ecology 10/5 (at 1-2pm)

Barker: Media Ecology in Michel Serres’ Philosophy of Communication

Michel Serres: Angels (excerpt)

Visualisering af viden i virtuelle læringsstrategier (ViViD)

Vi har lige udarbejdet et oplæg til UNI RUC om virtuelle læringsteknologier (ViViD):

I oplægget foreslår vi, at forskningscenter Experience Lab RUC indgår i udviklingen af virtuelle læringsteknologier med et projekt om visualisering af viden i virtuelle læringsteknologier – projekt ViViD.

“AKTUELLE UDFORDRINGER

Viden om komplekse samspil, strukturer, netværk og systemer stiller os i stigende grad over for problemer med dels at forstå disse samspil og dels at formidle forståelsen heraf. Det gælder ikke blot den stigende og massive mængde af tilgængelige data, viden og kommunikation, der blandt andet har taget form af manipulerbare algoritmisk organiserede data, men nok så meget gælder det samspil mellem heterogene data forstået som en kompleksitet af fx visuelle data, sansedata, oplevelse, kommunikation, erfaring og praksisformer.

De øgede muligheder for multi-modal digital og virtuel kommunikation og interaktion rummer nye muligheder for at formidle sådanne komplekse samspil, men det er ikke umiddelbart indlysende, hvordan vi bedst kan udnytte disse teknologier til at skabe rum for læring og eksperimenter med kompleks viden. Det er en aktuel udfordring at finde egnede måder at præsentere en given dataindsamling på eller at illustrere en given historie; effektiv visualisering er svært at opnå, men eksisterende viden om visualisering kan give et afsæt for at skabe nyt.”

Vi har tidligere arbejdet med et projekt om interaktive og “rige” rum for projektorganiserede studier, se her.

Ny digital strategi lover flere penge til forskning