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Synesign - The Intersection of Synaesthesia & Design
Synesign - The Intersection of Synaesthesia & Design
Synesign - The Intersection of Synaesthesia & Design
Synesign - The Intersection of Synaesthesia & Design
Synesign - The Intersection of Synaesthesia & Design
Synesign - The Intersection of Synaesthesia & Design
Synesign - The Intersection of Synaesthesia & Design
Synesign - The Intersection of Synaesthesia & Design
Synesign - The Intersection of Synaesthesia & Design
Synesign - The Intersection of Synaesthesia & Design
Synesign - The Intersection of Synaesthesia & Design
Synesign - The Intersection of Synaesthesia & Design
Synesign - The Intersection of Synaesthesia & Design
Synesign - The Intersection of Synaesthesia & Design
Synesign - The Intersection of Synaesthesia & Design
Synesign - The Intersection of Synaesthesia & Design
Synesign - The Intersection of Synaesthesia & Design
Synesign - The Intersection of Synaesthesia & Design
Synesign - The Intersection of Synaesthesia & Design
Synesign - The Intersection of Synaesthesia & Design
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Synesign - The Intersection of Synaesthesia & Design

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I stand at the crossroads of design and creativity. I am not a natural synesthete, but it's my job to form new interaction patterns, metaphors, and ways of design thinking. When I approach design …

I stand at the crossroads of design and creativity. I am not a natural synesthete, but it's my job to form new interaction patterns, metaphors, and ways of design thinking. When I approach design synesthetically, even associationally, it opens up wider design opportunities and modes of thought for me. And this led me to Synesign, the intersection of synesthesia + design.

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  • 1. Syne+sign! THE INTERSECTION OF SYNAESTHESIA & DESIGN Speaker’s
Notes:
 First,
a
simple
experiment…Everyone
close
your
eyes.

 Can
you
imagine
what
the
le@er
A
looks
like
in
your
mind?

 can
you
hear
the
sound
A
makes
in
your
head?

 Can
you
imagine
how
A
feels
in
your
hand?

 Can
you
smell
A?
 If
you
can’t,
you
just
need
to
open
your
eye

  • 2. Speaker’s
Notes:
 Synaesthesia
literally
means
“union
of
the
senses.”
 Basically,
when
two
or
more
senses
are
conjoined.

 For
example,
when
a
person
hears
music
and
sees
 color,
taste
a
piece
of
chicken
and
feels
a
shape,
or
 smells
words.
 .

  • 3. “ABILITY
TO
PERCEIVE
 UNCOMMON
MULTI‐SENSORY
GESTALTS
 IN
THE
PHYSICAL
ENVIRONMENT”
 Speaker’s
Notes:
 NeuroscienVsts
believe
we
all
have
synesthesia
when
 we
are
born,
but
as
we
learn
more
about
the
world,
 our
senses
separate.
For
a
lucky
few,
this
never
 happens.
Synesthesia
has
been
described
as
the
 “ability
to
perceive
uncommon
mulVsensory
gestalts
in
 the
physical
environment.”

 Pa.ern
finding
in
a
way
we
never
thought
possible.
 .

  • 4. Speaker’s
Notes:
 
At
one
Vme
it
was
believed
to
occur
mostly
in
leX
 handed
women
and
as
few
as
1
in
200,000
people;
 
now
it’s
believed
to
happen
to
anyone
and
as
many
as
 1
in
20
people
 .


 That
means
16
of
you
might
have
synesthesia.
 .

  • 5. Speaker’s
Notes:
 
Imagine,
for
a
moment,
being
blind.
You
can
guess
‐
 but
can’t
know
‐
how
the
visual
world
looks
 Yet,
sight
is
completely
natural
to
most
of
us.
 Now,
imagine
the
sight
I’m
talking
about
is
synesthesia
 –
we
are
now
the
ones
who
are
blind.
Synesthesia
 is
no
less
real
or
natural,
but
it’s
as
hard
to
 understand.

  • 6. Speaker’s
Notes:
 Why
is
synesthesia
important?

 It
is
believed
to
be
the
basis
for
metaphor,
for
 creaVvity
and
for
recognizing
many
of
the
pa@erns
 around
us.
Consider
this
example:
which
of
these
 shapes
is
kiki
and
which
is
booboo?
98%
of
the
general
 populaVon
chose
the
pointy
one
as
kiki.
Did
you?

  • 7. Speaker’s
Notes:
 Synesthesia
is
best
understood
through
the
eyes
of
the
 people
who
experience
it.

 Take
arVst
Carol
Steen.
Carol
has
pain
>
color
 synesthesia
and
experiences
colors
and
pa@erns
in
 response
to
pain.
 This
painVng
is
the
result
of
what
she
saw
during
 acupuncture.

  • 8. Speaker’s
Notes:
 I
have
had
numerous
and
ongoing
conversaVons
with
 synesthetes,
including
Brendan.
 
Brendan
is
a
grapheme
>
color
synesthete,
which
 means
he
sees
le@ers
and
numbers
in
his
own
unique
 colors,
like
his
personal
alphabet
shown
here.

 Brendan’s
grandmother
crochets
synestheVc
pa@erns
 and
his
mother
organizes
concepts
by
color.

  • 9. Speaker’s
Notes:
 And
this
is
reflecVonist,
Marcia
Smileck.
She
 photographs
reflecVons
on
moving
water,
whenever
 she
hears
a
chord
of
color
or
feels
a
texture.

 MarciaI
took
the
picture
when
the
red
roof
turned
to
 velvet
against
her
skin
and
the
white
shingles
felt
as
 so=
as
Santa’s
beard.

  • 10. Speaker’s
Notes:
 This
is
another
one
of
Marcia’s
photographs
–
she
 heard
the
sound
of
a
cello
on
the
water
and
took
the
 shot.
A

neuro‐scienVst
told
her
she
had
captured
on
 film
the
exact
sine
waves
produced
by
the
sound
of
 cello
strings.

Marcia
can
also
play
the
seams
of
a
 dress
and
she
hears
music
in
mountains.

  • 11. Speaker’s
Notes:
 I
stand
at
the
crossroads
of
design
and
creaVvity.
I
am
 not
a
natural
synesthete,
but
it's
my
job
to
form
new
 interacVon
pa@erns,
metaphors,
and
ways
of
design
 thinking.
When
I
approach
design
synestheVcally,
even
 associaVonally,
it
opens
up
wider
design
opportuniVes
 and
modes
of
thought
for
me.
And
this
led
me
to
 Synesign,
the
intersecVon
of
synesthesia
+
design.

  • 12. Speaker’s
Notes:
 My
first
exposure
to
synestheVc
thinking
came
when
I
 was
researching
the
idea
of
measuring
emoVon
 through
sound.
What
you
see
here
is
the
emoVon
 engine,
which
was
designed
to
capture
a
person’s
 emo@onal
response
to
a
product
over
@me.

 The
dial,
in
the
lower
leX
corner,
could
be
manipulated
 between
a
major
and
minor
chord
to
express
a
 person’s
emoVonal
response.


  • 13. Speaker’s
Notes:
 Consider
designer
Jonathan
Harris
who
spent
seven
 days
on
a
whale
hunt
with
Eskimos
in
Alaska
and
 captured
the
enVre
experience
based
on
his
 heartbeat.


 He
took
photos
at
15
minute
intervals,
increasing
the
 frequency
when
his
heart
sped
up,
like
during
the
 butchering
of
the
whales.


  • 14. Speaker’s
Notes:
 Consider
this
memorial
in
Germany
called
Touched
 Echo.
When
a
spectator
grasps
the
rails,
he
is
taken
 back
in
Vme
to
the
terrible
air
raid
of
1945
as
the
 sound
of
WWII
bombers
fills
his
ears.

 While
it
looks
as
if
they
are
shunng
their
ears
from
 the
noise,
the
sound
is
actually
carried
through
bone
 conducVon.

Like
synesthesia,
it’s
a
uniquely
personal
 and
unseen
experience.

  • 15. Speaker’s
Notes:
 Consider
Charles
Ives,
called
the
greatest
American
 composer.
He
would
go
out
in
thunderstorms,
listen
to
 the
wind
and
the
rain
and
the
church
bells
clanging
 and
would
then
race
back
inside
desperate
to
capture
 the
sounds
on
his
piano.

When
he
couldn’t,
he
started
 playing
the
“cracks”
between
the
piano
keys,
which
 became
the
microtones
of
modern
music.


  • 16. What
do
you
hear?
 Speaker’s
Notes:
 And
consider
this
sound…what
do
you
think
you
hear?

  • 17. Speaker’s
Notes:
 Did
anyone
guess
the
sound
of
urine
analysis?

 Dr.
Charles
Sweeley
at
Minnesota
State,
found
that
he
 could
be@er
determine
diseases
in
urine
samples
by
 hearing
what
his
eyes
could
not
see.

 Visually,
we
can
only
scan
one
line
at
a
Vme,
but
 aurally
we
can
hear
a
complete
song
or
the
57
unique
 instruments
that
may
make
up
the
song.

 This
has
also
been
done
for
DNA.

  • 18. Speaker’s
Notes:
 This
is
your
cue
to
unwrap
the
TCHO
chocolate.

 Put
it
in
your
mouth
now
to
let
it
warm
up,
but
do
not
 bite
into
it.

 At
the
start
of
the
next
slide,
I
want
you
to
close
your
 eyes
and
draw
a
slow,
conVnuous
line
of
what
you
feel
 you
taste
as
you
let
the
chocolate
dissolve
in
your
 mouth.

  • 19. Speaker’s
Notes:
 Start
drawing
now.

  • 20. Speaker’s
Notes:
 When
I
tried
chocolatey
at
a
conference,
I
closed
my
 eyes
and
drew
a
wavy
line.

 When
I
opened
my
eyes
the
presenter
said,
“The
 founder
likes
to
call
this
one
a
roller
coaster
ride.”
 Does
chocolate
have
a
heartbeat?

 Thank
you.
 And
would
we
have
an
even
deeper
understanding
of
 our
language
if
we
could
smell
it?
 
I
think
the
answer
is
yes.


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