Accidents and Failures as Fertile Creative Ground for the Near Future


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Slides from my presentation at the Share Festival (Warm-Up talk on October 20, 2010)

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Accidents and Failures as Fertile Creative Ground for the Near Future

  1. 1. 2 ingredients in this talk: failed robots and french tarts
  2. 2. Accidents and Failures as Fertile Creative Ground for the Near Future nicolas nova Torino, Oct. 20, 2010
  3. 3. Outline 1. Accidents and malfunctions are hot topics 2. A typology of failures 3. Design and accidents 4. How to benefit from failures (in my practice)
  5. 5. A typology of failures
  6. 6. Technical accidents
  7. 7. Technical accidents
  8. 8. Technical accidents: flawed sensors
  9. 9. Technical accidents: flawed sensors
  10. 10. Technical accidents: wrong results
  11. 11. Technical accidents: messages
  12. 12. Technical accidents: weird messages
  13. 13. Technical accidents: weird messages
  14. 14. Technical accidents: frustration
  15. 15. Technologies and frustration “The applications in which the frustrating experiences happened most frequently were web browsing, e-mail, and word processing. (...) The time lost due to frustrating experiences ranged from 47-53% of time spent on a computer depending on the location and study method.” “Determining Causes and Severity of End-User Frustration” by Ceaparu, Lazar, Bessiere, Robinson & Shneiderman (2002)
  16. 16. Intentional accident
  17. 17. Intentional accident: punch/hit/ kick
  18. 18. Intentional accident: but...
  19. 19. Non-intentional accident
  20. 20. Non-intentional accident
  21. 21. User’s involvementNon-intentional Intentional Role of technology iPhone dropped in toilet Kick vending machineAutomatic door Annoying robot Punching your computer because it’s not responsive Typology of failures -> design
  22. 22. User’s involvementNon-intentional Intentional Role of technology Design: minimize failures + avoid accidents
  23. 23. Anatomy of a failure: automatic doors
  24. 24. Failure in action: automatic devices weather-dependent calibration!? distinguish automatic from non-automatic too quickly/too slowly open when you don’t want it too invisible or illegible “locus of control”: floor? door side? different “door” conventions
  25. 25. automatic doors: wrong mental model
  26. 26. solution to build a mental model
  27. 27. users unaware of sensors position and wrong calibration
  28. 28. “15 minutes”: who decides this anyway?
  29. 29. individual-blame bias (e. rogers)
  30. 30. Accidents and failure as design material
  31. 31. future of robots = look at how people treat switches and vending machines! 1. Foresight: from here to there
  32. 32. Love, hate and a hospital robot: ‘The fact that the robot couldn't tell if it was a good time to interrupt and announce its presence was a big problem for some people, as one member of the nursing staff described: "I called it nasty names and told it, 'Would you shut the hell up? Can't you see I'm on the phone? If you say "TUG has arrived" one more time I'm going to kick you in your camera.' " Some staff members actually did lash out and kick TUG in frustration, more admitted to considering it.’
  33. 33. 2. The user experience of broken artifacts
  34. 34. 2. What minimal features should be implemented?
  35. 35. 3. Seamful design: friction can be part of the solution Project with Simpliquity (Fabien Girardin and Pierre Dillenbourg)
  36. 36. 3. Seamful design: use the limits Project with Céline Le Marc
  37. 37. Provoke failures and observe people’s behavior 4. Anti-probe
  38. 38. Case 1: errors in a location- based games
  39. 39. "I did not move physically, but I saw me moving on the map!" “I saw that Ben moved on the screen but I know he did not".
  40. 40. Case 1: provoke failure as a way to understand users’ mental models
  41. 41. "Determining the limits of pain during robot- human impacts this way will allow the design of robot motions that cannot exceed these limits" robot-arm-punches-human-to-obey-asimovs-rules.html
  42. 42. Case 2: wrong calibration on the Wii
  43. 43. Case 2: provoke failure as a tactic to change the user experience
  44. 44. ➡ We need to go beyond “failure is cool and funny” ➡ Different kinds of failures/accidents/malfunctions ➡ They often result from the incompatibilities between the way things are designed and the way people actually perceive, think, and act ➡ Failures and accident as a design tactic ➡ We collect design patterns, use cases, we should also collect “failure cases” as inspirational data Conclusion
  45. 45. “the Tarte Tatin was first created by accident at the Hotel Tatin in Lamotte- Beuvron, France in 1898.The hotel was run by two sisters, Stéphanie and Caroline Tatin. Conflicting stories concerning the tart's origin: - One of the sister was overworked one day. She started to make a traditional apple pie but left the apples cooking in butter and sugar for too long. Smelling the burning, she tried to rescue the dish by putting the pastry base on top of the pan of apples, quickly finishing the cooking by putting th whole pan in the oven.After turning out the upside down tart, she was surprised to find how much the hotel guests appreciated the dessert. - An alternative version: one of the sister baked a caramelised apple tart upside-down by mistake” The Wikipedia
  46. 46. grazie! @nicolasnova