Responsive Design and 4D Products: Enhancing Human Experiences Through Ubiquitous Computing

James Novak, University, My, Dale Patterson
As the boundaries between the physical and digital worlds increasingly blur, there is concern that humans are becoming subservient to computers and machines. Humancentred design principles are quickly forgotten as new technologies become the focus of research and commercial interest, resulting in a gizmo culture. Computing technology has become ubiquitous, however, the ubiquitous computing vision is yet to be realised after decades of developing ever faster, smaller and cheaper sensors. While
more » ... iquitous computing research has been dominated by engineering and computing disciplines, this thesis argues that today, the majority of technological hurdles to more human-centred interactions between people and technology have been overcome, and designers must now lead development of products that empower humans and encourage more sustainable relationships with technology. Specifically, product and industrial designers are being enabled by new software to develop more life-like products that have both physical and digital presence, no longer creating single static solutions to problems, but designing systems whereby products can adapt and evolve over time. This leverages the rapidly increasing quantity of sensors within products and the environment, and requires new thinking beyond the interface as a means for utilising this data. Employing a research through design methodology, experimental prototypes have been developed to understand how current technologies can be applied to products and design systems in order to allow them to adapt over time. Qualitative and quantitative results show how new symbiotic relationships between people and products are emerging, and are part of broader shifts within research disciplines like architecture, additive manufacturing and robotics to move towards more interconnected systems through the fourth industrial revolution. This thesis calls for product design research to adopt a unified approach to this new generation of 4D and responsive products, ensuring increasingly life-like technol [...]
doi:10.25904/1912/3706 fatcat:vl3iuyuf2zg2ba3zwvhcoampou