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D316.01 Data Objects


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This paper describes the principles, methods and strategies for the design of everyday objects that embody data – or Data Objects. The work presented in the paper connects the fields of industrial design and data physicalisation to introduce the concept of using data as a design material. To support the
creative synthesis of Data Objects the paper provides a literature review, methods and guidance on the creation of Data Objects alongside examples - and possible opportunities, challenges, and future scenarios - for the practice, use and the study of Data Objects.
Keywords: Big Data; Design Principles; Design Methods; Speculative Design; Design Activism.

Published in: Design
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D316.01 Data Objects

  1. 1. Data Objects: Design principles for data physicalisation R. Sosa, V. Gerrard, A. Esparza, R. Torres and R. Napper Auckland University of Technology, New Zealand & Monash University, Australia International Design Conference 2018 :: D316
  2. 2. TL;DR Data Objects: Everyday objects that embody data Data as a design material A literature review, principles, methods & case study Opportunities, challenges, and future scenarios
  3. 3. TL;DR
  4. 4. r/ELI5 Interactive crashstats application
  5. 5. r/dataisbeautiful Interactive crashstats application
  6. 6. r/mapPorn Interactive crashstats application
  7. 7. r/infographics Interactive crashstats application
  8. 8. r/showerthoughts
  9. 9. r/whatif “Ititamat ball (Klikitat and Yakama): Simple knots recorded individual days, while meaningful occasions, such as marriages, births, or deaths were highlighted with special markers. They contain the history of family and extended community”
  10. 10. Data Objects: morphology and/or functions are data-driven The artefact’s defining attributes are derived from and connected to quantitative data
  11. 11. r/LifeProTips Design Principles for Data Objects: 1: Data as a new type of design material 2: Design for access and interpretation 3: Design for cognitive and emotional engagement 4: Design for empowerment and action Design principles (Martin and Hanington, 2012) and data visualisation principles (Tufte, 1990, 2001; Kostelnick, 2008)
  12. 12. r/LifeProTips Design Methods for Data Objects: I. Data-to-Object: the source data guide the design process II. Object-to-Data: the target object guides the design process
  13. 13. r/Design
  14. 14. r/Design This Table is Occupied: the richest 20% owns 82.7% of global wealth while 80% only 17.3%. This table seats 5 people – each representing 20% of the global population. One person enjoys 82.7% of table surface area while the remaining five only access 17.3%
  15. 15. r/Design This Table is Occupied: If the table is flipped over, the distribution of table surface is the same for each person. The difficult activity of flipping a concrete table represents the difficult task of flipping current economic systems
  16. 16. r/esist Design Objects for Design Activism (DOxDA) To re-frame and expose significant issues through verifiable, accurate, and tangible data. To increase the impact of making information comprehensible to wide groups of people. Fuad-Luke, 2013; Thorpe, 2012; Bjögvinsson et al., 2012; Meadows, 1997
  17. 17. DIY Data Object Hands-on activity r/therewasanattempt
  18. 18. 2003-04 2011-12 Lowest quintile 30,439 31,205 Second quintile 175,385 191,207 Third quintile 370,230 437,856 Fourth quintile 623,850 766,465 Highest quintile 1,726,151 2,215,032 65540DO001_201112 Household Wealth and Wealth Distribution, Australia, 2011–12. Australian Bureau of Statistics r/todayilearned
  19. 19. r/AMA r/changemyview Thank you Hvala
  20. 20. Quipu necklace, Andes region circa 30th century BC ( r/DesignPorn