comfortable commuting, communal computing, and curation

Comfortable Computing,
Communal Computing, Content
Consumption and the Creativity of
Curation & Collage
Jofish Kaye
Nokia Research Center
Under consideration for
DIS 2012
Joint work with
Rachel Hinman
• Introduction
• Related Work
• Method
• Findings
• Owning a tablet
• Location
• Usage
• Implications
• A Case for Comfortable Computing
• Communal Computing
• Collect, Curate, Collage and Share
• Conclusions
• Senior Research Scientist & Ethnographer
• Ph.D Cornell Information Science
• MS MIT Media Lab
• BS MIT Brain & Cog Sci
• Consulting Professor,
Stanford d.School
• I study the impact of technology
on people, and vice versa, to design
better technologies.
Weiser proposed ubiquitous computing at three scales
inch (ParcTAB), foot (ParcPAD) and yard (Liveboard)
inch (phone), foot (tablet) and yard (TV)
Related Work
• Lots of studies of tablets for specific uses:
• Hsieh, G., Wood, K., and Sellen, A. Peripheral display of digital
handwritten notes. Proc. CHI 2006
• Igarashi, T., Matsuoka, S., and Tanaka, H. Teddy: a sketching interface
for 3D freeform design. ACM SIGGRAPH 2007 courses.
• Yeh, R., Liao, C., Klemmer, S., et al. ButterflyNet: a mobile capture and
access system for field biology research. Proc. CHI 2006.
• Jalali, A., Trottier, D., Tremblay, M., and Hincke, M. Administering a
Gross Anatomy Exam Using Mobile Technology. eLearn 2011.
• Thayer, A., Lee, C.P., Hwang, L.H., et al. The Imposition and
Superimposition of Digital Reading Technology : The Academic Potential
of E-readers. Reading, (2011), 2917-2926.
• But better: studies of existing technologies
• Horst, H. and Miller, D.The Cell Phone: An Anthropology of
Communication. Berg Publishers, 2006.
• Ito, M., Okabe, D., and Matsuda, M. Personal, Portable, Pedestrian:
Mobile Phones in Japanese Life. The MIT Press, 2006.
• Boyd, d. Taken out of context: American teen sociality in networked
publics. Ph.D Dissertation, UC Berkeley., 2009.
• Participants: 22 iPad owners, SF
• 11 men, 11 women, aged 14-55,
owned iPad 3 months +
• homemaker, high school teacher, IT
director at a local hospital, business
analyst, landscape architect, valet
driver, sysadmin, student, etc
• Interviews
• In home, ~2 hrs. Interviewed by 2
people, video/audio recorded, notes.
• Analysis
• Keywords, affinity diagrams and
cluster analysis. Well, that, and we’re
good at making sense of what people
are doing.
Owning an iPad:
‘It was an itch I had to scratch’
The iPad is a luxury item:
people buy it because it’s shiny
and beautiful, not because they
have a problem to solve.
• I felt really lucky that my work
gave me an iPad. But to be
honest, I’m a gadget guy so if
they hadn’t given it to me I
probably would have bought one
for myself. I can’t resist buying
new gadgets. They’re like shiny
toys for me. ~ Trevor
Owning an iPad:
I bought an iPad… now what?
People often don’t know what to do with
their iPads once they’ve bought them:
• I’m still trying to figure out exactly how to
use it in an effective way for me... I found
some applications I like on it, but often
times my go-to is my laptop. So I’m trying
to figure out with the iPad, the real niche
it can serve for me. To be honest, after
owning it for three months I haven’t
figured it that out yet. ~ Ramon
• To be completely honest with you, I
haven’t really opened up my iPad for the
last... oh, I’d say 2 months. – Indrani
• 90% of the time I still find myself going
back to what I feel comfortable with –
which is my laptop. ~ Daniel
Owning an iPad:
It’s mine, but…
• iPads are shared by multiple people.
• Device-based authentication ain’t gonna
cut it.
• Yes... the iPad belongs to me. But my son
uses it quite frequently, too. ~ Shelley
• Nobody really ‘owns’ the iPad. We bought it
for the house. It’s like the TV. It belongs to
both of us. ~ Norvin
• Initially I allowed my son to use it pretty
much whenever he wanted. That was until I
found out he bought $25 worth of games on
it from the iTunes store. Now I have to
monitor him a lot more closely on it. ~
Comfortable Computing
People don’t use the tablet sitting at a
desk or table. They use it lounging
around the house, or maybe in the car,
or waiting on a bench for their kids to
finish soccer.
I like cuddling up downstairs in bed with
Netflix on the iPad instead of sitting in front
of the TV with the Dolby sound. Much more
comfortable to go to bed with a movie the
same way I used to go to bed with a book.
~ Norvin
It’s almost like my blankie... I curl up in bed
with it, I usually have it with me, regardless
of extenuating circumstances. ~ Ian
Company Confidential
© 2011 Nokia
chi-tablt-presentation1.pptx v. 0.1 28-03-2011 Author: Jofish Kaye and Rachel Hinman
Connectivity Matters
• People who have 3G iPads and an account
are more likely to use them out of the house.
But that’s not the only reason.
• We’ve actually really struggled to figure out
the best ways to use it here in the
apartment. But it’s great for traveling – we
use it a lot when we go out of town for
directions and for Yelp. I’m glad we got the
plan with it because we aren’t a slave to wifi
anymore. We’re connected anywhere we go.
~ Randy
• I tried making a grocery list on the ipad...
[Using the iPad at the supermarket] was a
moment of great shame and
embarrassment... [The iPad] is expensive
and slightly obnoxious. ~ Angela
Usage: Content Consumption
• The iPad is great for consuming
content. People avoid creating on the
iPad, even writing emails. But…
• I never really read before. I haven’t
finished reading a book since
sophomore year in high school. But the
experience [of reading websites]
translates. It feels like I’m reading text
[on a website] instead of a book. ~
• Some professional users use a stylus:
for editing documents, taking notes, or
writing math examples.
• Does video become a first class
• iPad2 users take some photos: I used
my iPad to take a lot of pictures and
videos when we were driving out to
California from Chicago. It’s similar to
an iPhone in that way. ~ Kaleb
Content Consumption
• Some people really don’t want to
go back to the old ways of doing
• I think putting a physical keyboard
on an iPad is a terrible idea. It
defeats the point. It’s a totally new
device. People who do that want it
to be a computer because they
know what a computer is. iPads
are different, they’re not
computers... they are something
different. I think we’re still trying to
figure out what makes them
different. That’s part of the fun. ~
Usage: Apps
• Discovering apps is really hard. Our
users told us that the existing
marketplace sucks.
• Key apps:
• Netflix – everyone uses while doing
other things, like cooking or art or
playing Farmville on the computer. Or
Netflix on the big screen TV and IMDB
on the tablet. Think ecosystem.
• Epicurious – really focused cooking
app. Does what it does, well.
• Facetime – More reliable
than Skype, better form factor.
• Dropbox – only good way to
move files around.
Usage: the iPad doesn’t
play well with others
There’s a real opportunity for well thought out
synced apps between mobile and tablet and
laptop/desktop. Dropbox and IMAP are the model
• The potential for multi-tasking on an iPad is huge. It
could be SO much better. And I don’t mean just on
the device... I mean across all my devices. I wish I
could just physically push what’s on the iPad onto
my laptop. It’s kind of ridiculous that when two
devices are physically close to each other, you can’t
easily move data between them. Sure, you can do it
now, with Bluetooth or whatever, but who does
that? It’s completely NOT intuitive. ~ Ian
• I use it to create shopping lists. I wish there was an
easier way to do that because the keyboard isn’t
great on the iPad. I wish I could type it on my laptop
and transfer it to the [shopping list] application on
my iPad. But that’s not easy to do currently. ~
Comfortable Computing
• The tablet reconfigures the user
• The user reconfigures how they use the
• The tablet means that the user uses it in
a comfy place: “curled up” is the phrase
that keeps coming back.
• The tablet gets used for comfortable
computing uses: checking in with friends
on Facebook, flipping through what’s
going on today on Flipboard, scanning
the news, playing small games.
• If the Wii, the Kinect teaches us
anything, it’s that we can’t ignore the
body any more. Beyond the human
information processor.
• Suchman, Human Machine
Communal Computing
• Two kinds
• Thinking about a reasonable model:
Open to everyone (browser)
Open to family (most apps)
Open to individuals (email)
Require extra passwords
($$$, configuring)
• Hidden, private. Medical? porn.
• Also: easy sharing between devices is key
• Sharing between inch/foot/yard scale
• Control and content
• Must not be not dominated by security
• within the subnet
• Rescuing ubiquitous computing!
Changing models of creation
• First level of observation: tablets are for consumption of
media, not creation. Netflix, Youtube, Facebook, Twitter.
• Second level of observation: we are seeing creation, but it
looks different.
• Some of it looks like this:
Some of it looks like this
• Pinterest
• Lolcats
• 4chan?
Changing model of creation
• Collecting
• images, clips, tweets, articles, movies, books…
• Curating
• keeping, discarding, putting together with others
• Collaging
• Creating new things by combining things you find/keep
• Commenting
• Annotation, context,
• Circulating
• Propagating your collages, feeding back into the system.
• Tablets give us a chance to think through the future of
computing (and the iPad is not the end)
• Weak signals, but…
• Comfortable computing: taking the actions of the body
seriously and recognizing the connection
• Communal computing: with others sequentially and
• New kinds of creation through collection, curation, collage,
commentary and circulation.
Comfortable | Communal |
Thank you!
Jofish Kaye
Nokia Research Center
[email protected]

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