A complex view of laundry


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This is a systemic or complex analysis of laundry in general and washing machines in particular. This is how we are approaching advanced design studios at Tec de Monterrey in Queretaro, Mexico.

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A complex view of laundry

  1. 1. A complex view of laundry Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  2. 2. Laundry Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  3. 3. Laundry Two main meanings: “soiled clothes and place for doing the wash” Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  4. 4. Laundering Necessary: cleanliness, hygiene Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  5. 5. Washing machines Complex systems: social acceptance family interactions health, pride, security Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  6. 6. Laundering Yet, highly absurd means! Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  7. 7. 18 main steps 1) Select and buy new clothes (frequency, type) 2) Increase or replace your wardrobe 3) Designate a storage space (constraints, order) 4) Most items, most of the time remain stored 5) Garment selection is highly circumstancial 6) After wearing, decision-making to be cleaned or reuse (smell beats stains) 7) Dirty clothes are temporarily 'stored' in basket and they get dirtier 8) At designated or available times, groups of clothes are washed in cycles (sorting) 9) Decision-making on type of cleaning: washer, by hand or drycleaning 10) Clean water is added to all soiled garments, cleaning agents are added (detergent, bleach) 11) All water is soiled, and all garments share the dirt (different sources & degrees) 12) Cleaning depends on: catalytic reaction (enzyme), friction and rinsing 13) Output: tangled garments, bottlenecks in the process 14) After cycle, decision-making to repeat cycle 15) Machine remains idle most of the time 16) Water and energy consumption is huge and concentrates at peak times 17) Lack of feedback in the washing cycle: “black box” process 18) Limited control of drying process, decision-making for ironing/folding/storing Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  8. 8. 18 issues & conundrums 1) Smell is an important criterion in decision-making -perhaps more than stains 2) Sensorial perception of 'efficient cleaning' (noise, speed) 3) Lots and lots of water wasted unnecessarily 4) Idle machine takes lots of valuable space 5) Water reuse is not supported in the cycle 6) No feedback or guarantee of cleaningness 7) Key prejudices and assumptions, some untrue 8) Bottlenecks: water filling, clothesline, dirty/clean storage 9) Main water pollution is the cleaning agent (detergent) 10) Shape is highly converged 11) Socio-economic target niches are rather blurry in washing machine design 12) Key differences between housewifes-working women (time) 13) Washing is a parallel process and preferred over other chores 14) Clothes damages may indicate good level of washing (trade-off) 15) Experience and elder teachings are crucial 16) Power relations (maids-owner) and emotional relations (mom-family) 17) Cultural judgements based on the type of clothing 18) “One machine cleans all” clothes Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  9. 9. Negative feedback cycles “Mabe does top-loading washers because people buy top-loading washers because Mabe does top-loading washers because...” Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  10. 10. Bifurcation Clean water is used to do laundry. End result is (lots and lots) of wasted, dirty water and (more or less) clean clothes. Soap is the main pollutant of water. Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  11. 11. Fuzzy feedback Washing machines are “black boxes”: people add water + soap + clothes and expect to get clean clothes, without any real control or feedback of the process Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  12. 12. Scale Most of the time, washing machines are idle. They take up valuable space at home, yet they are used less than 5% of the time (consuming in peak times water and electricity) Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  13. 13. Entropy Laundry is an entire cycle of order-disorder: clothes are (more or less) classified in the closet, then gradually piled up in basket, then all mixed in laundry, then re-classified after drying. Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  14. 14. ? Information Almost all dirt & stains are treated equal: there is no control over origin of stains, source of dirt, levels of smell. After a threshold, it's all the same. Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  15. 15. ! Emergence A load of laundry is unpredictable: never the same combination of fabrics, dirt, etc. Often times, unexpected results Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  16. 16. System The washing machine is the front-end of the entire plumbing system at home Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  17. 17. Holography Detergent is laundry Dirty clothes is laundry Clothesline is laundry Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  18. 18. Auto-poiesis Personal need of washing clothes is created by social pressure created by the sum of personal needs. Interaction: society-individual-washing machine Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  19. 19. Auto-poiesis Washing machine is used to clean clothes after they get dirty. Could washing be done right before wearing a garment? Or while? Could washing (or dirtying) be prevented altogether? Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  20. 20. Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx) http://www.wowowow.com/politics/rush-limbaugh-vatican-vacuum-cleaner-not-washing-machine- most-liberating-women-233262
  21. 21. Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx) http://www.gizmohighway.com/history/washer.htm
  22. 22. Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  23. 23. Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
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  27. 27. Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  28. 28. Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx) http://home.howstuffworks.com/washer.htm
  29. 29. Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx) http://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?c=clotheswash.pr_clothes_washers
  30. 30. Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx) http://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?c=clotheswash.clothes_washers_advanced_technology
  31. 31. Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wkMXpKmRXvU&fmt=18
  32. 32. Mabe Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  33. 33. Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  34. 34. Random ideas Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
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  36. 36. Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
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  50. 50. Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  51. 51. Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  52. 52. Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  53. 53. Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  54. 54. Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  55. 55. Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  56. 56. http://www.keyetv.com/content/news/topnews/story/Washing-machine-suds-up-les- Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx) chiens/Nlp6OPlocUu9ZrM5T6xccA.cspx
  57. 57. http://www.nytimes.com/2004/03/05/international/asia/05JAPA.html Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
  58. 58. Dr. Ricardo Sosa (rdsosam@itesm.mx)
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