Monday, October 22, 2007
11:00 AM
Computer Science Bldg. Room 209
Dr. Carman Neustaedter
Kodak Research Laboratories
Designing Technology for Everyday Life
Technology is all around us, affecting most aspects of our everyday lives. With this ubiquity comes a need to understand how to best design technology to fit within and extend our existing social practices. In this talk, I look at three case studies to illustrate how we can use an understanding of people's existing social practices and needs to inform technology design.

First, I look at the privacy concerns of telecommuters as they attempt to collaborate and maintain communication with colleagues at the office through video conferencing systems. I discuss findings from a controlled experiment that investigates how awareness needs interplay with privacy concerns when video obfuscation is used to mitigate privacy in the video channel. I then outline a context-aware home video conferencing system as one possible solution to address the needs of telecommuters.

Second, I discuss the coordination challenges families face as they try to schedule and coordinate family activities. I outline findings from ethnographic interviews of families' calendaring routines and show how this knowledge reveals insights into the design of digital family calendars to fit within and extend existing family practice. I present the design and field evaluation of LINC, a digital family calendar that makes family calendar information ubiquitously accessible wherever family members need it.

Third, I outline the challenges people face with browsing and managing large collections of photos. I describe ethnographic findings that demonstrate the routines families use to organize both film and digital photos. These show the importance of leveraging film photo routines in the digital realm. I then show how these suggestions may be realized within the design of digital photo management software.

Bio: Dr. Carman Neustaedter is a Research Scientist in the Intelligent Systems group at Kodak Research Labs. His research interests are in human-computer interaction with a focus in domestic computing and computer-supported collaboration. In these areas, he seeks to understand the socio-technical factors of ubiquitous technology design to support the everyday social practices of individuals and groups. This multidisciplinary research spans the broad areas of computer science, cultural anthropology, sociology, and social psychology. Carman holds a PhD in Computer Science from the University of Calgary, Canada, and also spent several years working at Microsoft Research as an intern and research contractor. Refreshments will be served at 10:45