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Observation Assignment

Intro.ObservationAssignment History

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!!! In Depth Observation

For the second stage of this exercise, pick the interaction you found the most interesting and observe and describe it in depth.  What is the setting?  What is the physical orientation of the person (sitting, standing, etc)?  What does the person physically do in the course of the interaction?  How many steps does it take?  How many times is the person listening to the device? How many times is the device "listening" to the person?  What's the balance of that time?

As much as possible, try not to describe the person's intention, just their action.  Imagine you were entirely unaware of the social context of the interaction, as if you were an extraterrestrial alien, seeing this for the first time.  Describe the interaction in your writing, and to the class, on these terms.  What details do you notice that you previously overlooked?  What parts of the transaction seem fluid or effortless?  What parts seem to take the most effort?  What parts seem the most awkward or strained?

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We will discuss these observations in class over the course of two weeks. Be prepared to be called on in either week
. Regardless of whether you're called on in class or not, make sure your notes are online for your classmates and instructor to read and discuss.
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We will discuss these observations in class. Be prepared to be called on.
Regardless of whether you're called on in class or not, make sure your notes are online for your classmates and instructor to read and discuss.
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|| location and time of day|| apparent intent of the actor|| time taken for the action || number of people involved || motor skills needed (hands, legs, seeing, hearing, etc) ||

Collect
your notes on your blog or class wiki. Do this in pairs, with one person observing and the other keeping notes.  Alternate roles as well.

The goal of this stage is to notice how many everyday technology interactions we experience that we're largely unconscious of.  In many cases, the success of these transactions depends on the lack of attention we have to pay to completing them. The goal of most of these moments is not to use a technology, but to reach some other goal. 
to:
* location and time of day
* apparent intent of the actor
* time taken for the action
* number of people involved
* motor skills needed (hands, legs, seeing, hearing, etc)

Collect
your notes on your blog. Do this in pairs, with one person observing and the other keeping notes.  Alternate roles as well.

The goal of this stage is to notice how many everyday technology interactions we experience that we're largely unconscious of, and what it takes to do them.  In many cases, the success of these transactions depends on the lack of attention we have to pay to completing them. The goal of most of these moments is not to use a technology, but to reach some other goal. 
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||location and time of day|| apparent intent of the actor|| time taken for the action || number of people involved ||
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|| location and time of day|| apparent intent of the actor|| time taken for the action || number of people involved || motor skills needed (hands, legs, seeing, hearing, etc) ||
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|| location and time of day|| apparent intent of the actor|| time taken for the action || number of people involved ||
to:
||location and time of day|| apparent intent of the actor|| time taken for the action || number of people involved ||
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|| location || Apparent intent of the action|| the time taken for the action || number of people involved in the transaction ||
to:
|| location and time of day|| apparent intent of the actor|| time taken for the action || number of people involved ||
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To begin with, pick a day and take note of every time you see a person using a digital device.  This could be anything from buying and using a Metrocard on the subway to playing video games in an arcade to making cell phone calls to using an ATM to swiping an ID at the gym.  With each action you note, take note also of the location, the time taken for the action, and the number of people involved in the transactionCollect your notes on your blog or class wiki.
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To begin with, take a one-hour hour walk or ride around the city. Try to travel as far as you can from your start and get back in an hour, this will give more variety.  Take note of every time you see a person using a digital device. This could be anything from buying and using a Metrocard on the subway to playing video games in an arcade to making cell phone calls to using an ATM to swiping an ID at the gymWith each action you note, take note of:
|| location || Apparent intent of the action|| the time taken for the action || number of people involved in the transaction ||

Collect your notes on your blog or class wiki. Do this in pairs, with one person observing and the other keeping notes.  Alternate roles as well.

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For the second stage of this exercise, pick the interaction you found the most interesting and observe and describe it in depth.  What is the setting?  What is the physical orientation of the person (sitting, standing, etc)?  What does the person physically do in the course of the interaction?  How many steps does it take?  How many times is the person listening to the device? How many times is the device "listening" to the person?  What's the balance of that time?
to:
For the second stage of this exercise, pick the interaction you found the most interesting and observe and describe it in depth.  What is the setting?  What is the physical orientation of the person (sitting, standing, etc)?  What does the person physically do in the course of the interaction?  How many steps does it take?  How many times is the person listening to the device? How many times is the device "listening" to the person?  What's the balance of that time? 

As much as possible, try not to describe the person's intention, just their action.  Imagine you were entirely unaware of the social context of the interaction, as if you were an extraterrestrial alien, seeing this for the first time.  Describe the interaction in your writing, and to the class, on these terms.  What details do you notice that you previously overlooked?  What parts of the transaction seem fluid or effortless?  What parts seem to take the most effort?  What parts seem the most awkward or strained?

-----

We will discuss these observations in class over the course of two weeks. Be prepared to be called on in either week. Regardless of whether you're called on in class or not, make sure your notes are online for your classmates and instructor to read and discuss.
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The goal of this assignment is to observe and describe a person's typical technological interaction.
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The goal of this assignment is to develop the habit of detailed observation of what people physically do when they use the kinds of technologies we're developing. In order to develop good physical interfaces, you need to know how people use existing ones. Do learn this, it helps to observe carefully, and to limit your assumptions as to what the person's intentions are while you're observing.

!!! Counting Daily Uses

To begin with, pick a day and take note of every time you see a person using a digital device.  This could be anything from buying and using a Metrocard on the subway to playing video games in an arcade to making cell phone calls to using an ATM to swiping an ID at the gym.  With each action you note, take note also of the location, the time taken for the action, and the number of people involved in the transaction.  Collect your notes on your blog or class wiki.

The goal of this stage is to notice how many everyday technology interactions we experience that we're largely unconscious of.  In many cases, the success of these transactions depends on the lack of attention we have to pay to completing them. The goal of most of these moments is not to use a technology, but to reach some other goal. 

!!! In Depth Observation

For the second stage of this exercise, pick the interaction you found the most interesting and observe and describe it in depth.  What is the setting?  What is the physical orientation of the person (sitting, standing, etc)?  What does the person physically do in the course of the interaction?  How many steps does it take?  How many times is the person listening to the device? How many times is the device "listening" to the person?  What's the balance of that time? 
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The goal of this assignment is to observe and describe a person's typical technological interaction.
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