Lamp you have to teach
Since 2017 I have been experimenting with machine learning as a design material. Fascinated by the possibility of redefining relationship between people and ML-powered artefacts, I started designing with focus on evoking positive emotions, usage for personal purposes and promoting understanding of basic principles behind technology, thus putting the human in the position of control. My work been part of research competitions (CHI’18 Montreal), invited talks (Hacking ML Munich) and got me to conferences (ML Prague, CHI’19 Glasgow). An example artefact from my ML work is Silly Lamp.
How to design machine learning artefacts that empower humans? The current interaction paradigms for ML-based artefacts and services don’t promote active human participation in the domain, are often obscured and indirect. Can we re-imagine the relationship between humans and technology in a home setting, so that it could be gradually built on trust?
Democratic, inclusive and engaging experiences through first stages of personal training of ML algorithms. Human-AI relationship developing over time as the agency of the artefact shifts.
A working prototype of a Silly Lamp, lamp that does nothing unless you teach it, was deployed in participants houses for 24- and 72-hours user sessions. Insights from the experiments, iterations and user studies formed a silly object aesthetics and set of recommendations for engaging ML experiences. This work was was presented at CHI’18 in Montreal & CHI’19 in Glasgow.
- 10 weeks
- Machine learning
- Tangible Interaction
- Design based research
Silly objects are simple, open-ended technologies intentionally trained by the end users. Instead of constantly recording data, they require intentional training examples. They let the user shape their agency and gradually shift into the periphery of attention.
The concept of Silly objects was developed in a design process consisting of a survey, iterative prototyping, co-design sessions and sketching in open-sourse hardware and software.