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"It's a Bomb!" - Material Literacy and Narratives of Making
Södertörn University, School of Natural Sciences, Technology and Environmental Studies, Media Technology. Stockholm University, Sweden.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-9066-4673
Stockholm University, Sweden.
Södertörn University, School of Natural Sciences, Technology and Environmental Studies, Media Technology.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-1644-1778
2017 (English)In: Proceedings of the 2017 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, New York: Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), 2017, p. 121-132Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

This paper analyses a series of events in which a discarded box found in a garbage room is examined and taken apart in the context of a makerspace. The participants' inquiry provided a rich and multifaceted experience in various settings, including puzzle-solving, exploring physical and digital materials, engaging people with different skills. The social engagements with and around the artifacts brought certain interpretative aspects to the fore. Situated acts of interpretation worked as ways of building a coherent narrative and a meaningful experience. In the paper, we highlight the relationship between on the one hand the subjects' skills and motivations to understand and make sense of the technology at hand which we call material literacy, and on the other hand the specific material qualities that encourage or trigger certain interpretations and experiences. The qualities we discuss are: opacity, risk, authenticity, uniqueness, age, and hybridity. This study allows us to reposition the contemporary understanding of makerspaces beyond that of being places for innovation and learning.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
New York: Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), 2017. p. 121-132
Keywords [en]
Maker culture, material literacy, making, literacy, interaction, experience
National Category
Human Computer Interaction
Research subject
Other research area
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-32807DOI: 10.1145/3025453.3025529ISI: 000426970500011Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85044861068ISBN: 978-1-4503-4655-9 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:sh-32807DiVA, id: diva2:1109563
Conference
CHI'17 Denver, Colorado, USA, May 6-11, 2017.
Available from: 2017-06-14 Created: 2017-06-14 Last updated: 2022-11-03Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Makers, Materials and Machines: Understanding Experience and Situated Embodied Practice in the Makerspace
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Makers, Materials and Machines: Understanding Experience and Situated Embodied Practice in the Makerspace
2022 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This thesis explores interaction between humans, materials, and machines, in the context of makerspaces. The concept of making describes a practice that deals with new technologies in combination with craft to create artifacts in physical, digital and hybrid forms. Despite substantial research, there is still a need to examine what practices of making have to offer to Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) research. This particularly concerns investigations of the close relations between the multitudes of different activities, materials, machines and things in such shared spaces.

Making is discussed as a practice of importance for interaction design and conceptualised as involving a particular mindset when engaging with materials and machines. Based on this, my work argues that the phenomenon calls for a deeper reflection on recent movements on material interaction and materiality on the one hand, and perspectives on machine interactions on the other. I explore how situated and embodied practices can be revealed in investigations of makerspace activities. Further, my work describes how makers experience and make sense of the materials and machines that populate makerspaces. Finally, I map out how insights on experience and practice with machines and materials can be conceptualised in a way that become useful for contemporary interaction design practices.

The presented research builds on four qualitative studies, in which I draw on investigations in the makerspace and combine an ethnographic approach with participant observation, design methods and contextual inquiry. The resulting five collaboratively written papers frame making as an experience in itself and discover particular ways of making sense of materials. Further, we study embodied and situated dimensions of 3D printing, as well as practices concerning modding and the maintenance of machines and explore how practitioners may develop a maker mindset. The papers contribute with a set of conceptualisations such as “material literacy” when taking artifacts apart, “machine sensibility”, which practitioners show in their interaction with 3D printing, and the “pliable machine” that emerged from studying modding of a laser cutter. These conceptualizations highlight new aspects and perspectives of maker activities and interactions previously less accounted for.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Computer & Systems Sciences, Stockholm University, 2022. p. 116
Series
Södertörn Doctoral Dissertations, ISSN 1652-7399 ; 208
Series
DSV report series, ISSN 1101-8526 ; 22-003
Keywords
HCI, making, materials, machines, experience, makerspace, situated practice, embodied interaction, material interaction, maker culture, material turn, digital fabrication, material literacy, machine sensibility, pliable machine
National Category
Information Systems, Social aspects Human Aspects of ICT
Research subject
Baltic and East European studies
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-49972 (URN)978-91-7911-998-0 (ISBN)978-91-7911-999-7 (ISBN)
Public defence
2022-10-21, Lilla hörsalen, NOD-huset, Borgarfjordsgatan 12, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Funder
The Foundation for Baltic and East European Studies
Available from: 2022-09-29 Created: 2022-09-29 Last updated: 2022-09-29Bibliographically approved

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Landwehr Sydow, SophieTholander, JakobJonsson, Martin

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Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • harvard-anglia-ruskin-university
  • apa-old-doi-prefix.csl
  • sodertorns-hogskola-harvard.csl
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  • Other style
More styles
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  • de-DE
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