Posts Tagged ‘CIID and Copenhagen Life’

Brainstorming workshops…

March 19, 2009

Some more photographs from the workshops we hosted and facilitated…

brainstormweek23Sid facilitating one of the sessions

brainstormweek19A lot of ideas!!

brainstormweek20Marcin thinking hard

brainstormweek211Brainstorming tools!

Service design begins….

March 2, 2009


Although we have done design projects at CIID that have ended up as services , today started the beginning of our official 5 week service design block taught by our course director Simona and Brian Rink (Ideo) Today we spent the day in a seminar at Copenhagen Central Library to here about how the danish public library service works and some of the problems that they are trying to address right now. What amazed me instantly was how successful their service already seemed to be, yet they were striving to make it better with a big focus on the user needs, user involvement & participation and nation and international co-operation.  One of the issues that was mentioned several times today was “how do you combine the physical and digital elements of a library” but at the same time keep the core ideal that a library should create a meeting place for neighborhoods, facilitate “community” spirit,learning, studying and reading. An interesting idea to sleep on!

All and all it was a really interesting and insightful day. Tomorrow we will be hearing from someone from tele-medicine…which to be honest i’m not sure what exactly this is, but i guess i shall find out! We will then need to decided between the two topics to focus our projects on.

Interaction design in Copenhagen

March 1, 2009


Great news came on Friday that CIID have launched their application process for next year!!!

“The interaction design program teaches students to apply technology to everyday life, through the design of software, products, and services. We believe in a hands-on and user-centered approach to interaction design. Students learn the programming and electronics skills needed to work with technology as a design medium. They conduct user-research and experience prototyping to provide real-world grounding for their concepts. Frequent work in multi-disciplinary teams encourages peer-to-peer learning. A diverse selection of visiting faculty exposes students to a range of expertise.

Next year’s interaction design programme builds on the structure of the pilot year. The twelve month programme is divided into three tiers: foundations, investigations, and the thesis. The foundations are short workshops that provides students with the skills they need throughout the year. The investigations give students the opportunity to pursue in-depth projects around a particular design brief. The thesis provides students with an opportunity to explore an area of their choosing, combining design work with reflection and knowledge generation. Additionally, students will participate in innovation projects: collaborations with industry on briefs of mutual interest.

As an education concerned with the broad potential of design and technology, the interaction design programme is looking for a wide diversity of students. We welcome applicants from all over the world and from any background. You should be curious and creative; enthusiastic about design and working in a cross-disciplinary environment. Whether you’re currently studying or working, you should be interested in the connections between education and interaction design practice. As this is a new programme, we’re seeking students with an interest in helping to shape the education and curriculum. We plan to have a class of approximately 25 students”

I may be a little bias but if you want to study interaction design this is the place to be, the course is awesome, the faculty are unreal and the energy between everyone is great! It is by far one of the best decisions i ever made! If you want to see more about the sort of projects you would be working on check out our microsite.

Its not about using the colour green

March 1, 2009

For the past two weeks at CIID we have been working on sustainability briefs, and thinking about the climate change conference that is happening in Copenhagen in December 2009. All of at CIID care about the environment, but i think we can also say that we are careless sometimes, especially when it comes to the use of materials within the studio!So….our class buddy Ujjval, put together a very inspiring and motivating 2 minute presentation for us to make us think a little bit more about our actions! It is absolutely fantastic, and he deserves the biggest gold star for it! Here it is…..

blueprint, buddies and beer

February 27, 2009


11.30pm thursay night……..john and lavrans (live|work) are our saviors bringing us beer while we put our presentations together for tomorrow!and a few sneak preview photos from our project!







i think its time to cycle home…..

“Meet the food you eat” on Treehugger

February 16, 2009


Today Adam, Sid and i were super excited to see that our Project had been featured on Treehugger, this was really great for us, as throughout the project we had used this website as one of our keys sources of information, data and inspiration. Since the end of our TUI project we have been overwhelmed by the support and feedback we have been given with regards to our idea. It’s really great to see people getting excited about sustainability, and really caring about how their actions are having an affect on society.  I am also very excited to say that i think we will be exhibiting our project at the NEXT conference in april, run by the Innovation lab…i will keep you updated with that though!

The first tiny step….

February 7, 2009

Yesterday we had to write our first statement of intent for out thesis project. Over the course of the week we have had previous interaction design students for IDII (interaction design institute ivrea) presenting their work. This has been inspiring and great to get tips of what works well and what not to do! As we only have fourth months to do our thesis everyone is feeling a little nervous, but also excited to dive into something new! At this stage our statements are still relatively open (well mine is anyway!) at we now have 3 months of industry projects and service design to continue our thinking and refine our research question. This is my initial attempt at it!

I want my thesis to …
As someone who is still in the early stages of their career I see my thesis as my golden ticket to learn who I am as a designer and to prepare myself for my future after CIID. It is an opportunity to explore a new user group and context that will really challenge me intellectually and emotionally as a designer.  I want my thesis to allow me to use my natural strengths of product design, service design, user engagement and prototyping, but also allow room for me to keep building on the technical skills that I have been gradually developing.

It is also hugely important to me that I give back to CIID and that my work will promote the correct ethos of the course. I feel extremely lucky to be part of the pilot year so naturally I want to do anything I can to help it succeed in the future!

I’m interested in and inspired by…
I am motivated by the need to help people, bringing enjoyment to everyday experiences, even seeing someone smile. I strive to create solutions that will play an important and meaningful role in someone’s life.

An area that I am fascinated by and see being an underlying issue throughout my project is…How do you enable people to reflect their identify and express themselves through the use of a service like they can by owning a tangible products?  How do you build a community around the people using a service and inspire others to be part of it. Essentially how do you create service envy?

(Below  are Specific context areas I am interested in are)

Personal Informatics: If people could access person information about their daily actions, and activities could it help them gain new perspective on the way they live. How can this practical information be communicated on an emotional level that would encourage people to change the way they live and the affect it has on society?

Elderly People:
Our population is ageing, yet elderly people are still living in isolation. I am interested in how do you reconnect elderly people with their family and the community, help them make and maintain friends. How do you break the communication barrier between elderly people and younger generations and let them have “ageless” conversations rather than the typical “back in my day…”

Life Work Balance:
When you are a workaholic who is in love with the work you do/your job (like me!) is there a danger of it affecting other areas of your life. How do you maintain a good life-work balance?

How can interaction design help children to learn through play, tangible storytelling and creativity? How can we captivate their imagination to teach them about important social and environmental issues surrounding our society, as they are a generation that will have potential to make a difference?

User groups I’m interested in:
Nurses, Elderly people (living on the own), grandparents, children in early stages of learning to read and write, primary school teachers, health conscious adults, Single Parents, diabetes sufferers, snowboarders.

My main confusion is now what direction to take, do I start with a user group, a problem area or a context. Decision-making is not one of my strengths!

During my thesis I would like to challenge myself in…
I want to challenge my design thinking, to a deeper and more emotional level. I want to continue my learning on the correct use of metaphors, affordances and appropriate use of technology that is friendly and makes sense to non-expert users.  I will push myself to gain a more practical knowledge of electronics and programming. Where it is possible I will leave my comfort zone If it will have a positive effect on my learning and project experience.

picture-11Diagram showing skills/tools/knowledge that are in my comfort zone and outwith it.

TUI links

February 4, 2009


Here are some links for posts and photos from the TUI course, i will update as more appear….,,, Ujjval’s flickr, Eilidh’s flickr, Tobias’s flickr, David’s flickr 🙂

CIID pilot year microsites go live!

February 3, 2009

For the past 6 months 21 students from around the world have been studying on the Interaction Design Pilot year, at Copenhagen Institute of Interaction Design (CIID). During this time we have taken part in 10 workshops, ranging from user research with the elderly, to design theory, to physical computing to graphical and tangible user interfaces. All our projects have now been documented to date and is available to see at

picture-1The school will be announcing it’s application process for September 2009 in the next few weeks. If you know of anyone who might be interested in applying please let them know.

“Meet the Food You eat”

February 2, 2009

On friday we presented our final work for our TUI course……

main-image1-663x497completed working prototype in exhibition space


Custom built “weights” to represent the number of trees needed to offset the co2 emissions produced during food transportation.

What is it?
Our project is a scale that measures a food product’s environmental impact. It looks at the carbon emitted as a result of transporting the food and measures this in terms of how many trees would be required to offset that carbon over one year.

Who is it for?
The scale is an exhibition piece intended to make the general public think about the environmental implications of the food they purchase.

Why is it valuable?
This scale is an exploration in how tangible interfaces can be used to interact with data on the web. With the increase in usage of RFID technology and as “everday” objects become networked, we anticipate access to untold amounts of information for things as simple as an apple. With appropriate ways to interact with this data, we hope people will be able to make more informed decisions that will help build a sustainable world.

As an exhibition piece, this scale will raise questions about the food you buy, where it comes from and how it is transported. With a subject as complex as carbon emissions and the global food economy, our scale is only an entry point and is intended to raise more questions than it will answer.

This scale can also be viewed as a hypothetical kitchen appliance or point to a future grocery store service. The data it uses is important but remains hidden to most people, and we hope this will not be the case for much longer.

How does it work?
The scale works by looking at the carbon emitted by transporting a particular product from it’s country of origin to Denmark. Place an RFID tagged product on the appropriate arm and try to balance the scale with the tree shaped weights. The amount of trees used to balance the scale represents the number of actual trees it would take to offset that product’s carbon emissions over one year. Swap items on the scale and compare different items from a particular country or similar items from different countries.

What were your key learnings?
Our team experienced many challenges in assembling the scale and in gathering the data behind the products, but most of our key learnings came in the beginning of the project. Rapid prototyping and user testing were essential for our team. We learned that building rudimentary models is the best way to test rudimentary ideas. Some models told us when an idea was going in the wrong direction while other models told us this only when in the hands of people outside our team. From the beginning, our project was heavy with metaphors – a scale and weights to measure data, and trees to represent this data. User testing was the only way to know if these metaphors were the right choice.

Illustration Instructions for the exhibition



step-3Our process documented in a book (printed for exhibition)