Friday, 2 October 2015

FMP: Wake Up light by Philips

To make this clear, my idea came before I research any existing products in the market, but only to realise how similar my idea is to this lamp from Philips. It's the Wake-Up Light

Wake-Up light is doing quite the same as my idea, it has the feature of simulating sunset to compensate the effects done by artificial light at night. Although I am not sure if circadian rhythm can be adjusted by this mean, the light was designed in this regard. When a certain function is turned on, the lamp will slowly dims down over 30 minutes duration.

In the morning, the lamp also simulates the sunrise by gradually brighten the light and the colour changing according the the actual sunrise, along with various default  nature sounds to wake up the person (you can supposedly choose any music in your music library, I am not an expert but I highly doubt that waking up with heavy metal is anywhere close to natural)

It also can track your sleeping quality and pattern, but the accuracy should be under review, there are two common way to track sleep, I have explained this in the previous post. In this product, I think (but not sure), it is using the accelerometer inside your phone to track the your movement during your sleep. However, the mobile phone in this case, is on a docking station not on the bed, very unlikely to detect any movement that is occurred on the mattress, but this is one of the key feature to the mobile app Philips has provided. 

So the question now is, how do I differentiate this Philips Wake-Up light from my own idea, I think there is some similarity between the two, but the main focus of the two are not the same. Wake-Up light is not designed to change a person's behaviour but to suit their lifestyle. 

The product allows the user to customize many features. But to me and my idea, I mainly wish to change the people's behaviour. The sunsets simulation is identical to my idea when the light dims and head droops, but the simulation from Philips starts when the phone is docking on the station in the evening, this will only happen when the person is ready to sleep. My project on the other hand, is for reminding people who has NOT yet gone to sleep. You see the difference? One is purely suiting the user, the other is changing the user, and this links back to my thesis where Marc Hassenzahl stated that "convenience will not instill change but friction will."

Thursday, 1 October 2015

FMP: Sleep Deprivation Caused By Artificial Lights

Irregular sleep pattern is one of the most common bad habit modern citizens have, ever since the nightclubs were invented, human sleeping time has been shifted by artificial lights, this including household lights, mobiles, laptops and such. 

Circadian rhythm is any biological process that displays an endogenous, entrainable oscillation of about 24 hours. These 24-hour rhythms are driven by a circadian clock, and they have been widely observed in plants, animals, fungi, and cyanobacteria. I am not going to go too deep about circadian rhythm as it covers a huge range of biology. In simple term, Circadian rhythm is directly connected to our sleeping pattern and it can be affected easily.

Researchers say. The artificial light emitted by these devices signals our brain to stay awake, as it grows accustomed to thinking light equates to daytime. Our natural circadian rhythms become disjointed, and as a result, our brain produces less of the hormone melatonin, which is produced in the absence of light and helps regulate sleep.

"We think that the advent of electric lighting has significantly impacted upon sleep-wake patterns," Professor Shantha Rajaratnam, from Monash University's School of Psychology and Psychiatry "But with the proliferation of electronic devices that emit light we are expecting that these problems will increase."

Due to this effect, a irregular circadian rhythm could lead to some severe consequences, it could causes several types of cancer (breast and prostate cancer), debilities, heart diseases and obesity. 

The researches are clear that all the artificial lights has a certain level of disruption to human circadian rhythm, it is almost impossible to shield yourself from artificial lights in a city (that means you will have to shut down all the light-emitting sources including cars on the street and other people's lighting products). Right here I am not suggesting that I have the idea for adjusting entire human race's circadian rhythm, I am suggesting to use a persuasion to convince people to be on bed at a regular pattern, without forcing or by any means of rewards/punishments. 

We know the problem, and since the problem will be almost impossible to overcome, we can only then choose a different way to work the issue out, even the method has not directly related to the cause of such problem. 

Wednesday, 30 September 2015

FMP: Sleeping cycles

Sleeping is not as easy as you think, there are five stages we have to run through during a sleep, 1,2,3,4 and REM (Rapid Eye Movements) sleep. Usually the brain will go through stage 1 before REM sleep, with the end of first REM sleep it starts from stage 1 again. An average sleeping cycle takes about 90 to 110 minutes. The first cycle of your sleep is begin with light sleep, then comes to short length of REM sleep, and the longer deep sleep. With each cycle, REM sleep period becomes longer with deep sleep period shorten.

Stage 1 is light sleep where you drift in and out of sleep and can be awakened easily. In this stage, the eyes move slowly and muscle activity slows. During this stage, many people experience sudden muscle contractions preceded by a sensation of falling.

In stage 2, eye movement stops and brain waves become slower with only an occasional burst of rapid brain waves. When a person enters stage 3, extremely slow brain waves called delta waves are interspersed with smaller, faster waves. 

In stage 4, the brain produces delta waves almost exclusively. Stages 3 and 4 are referred to as deep sleep or delta sleep, and it is very difficult to wake someone from them. In deep sleep, there is no eye movement or muscle activity. This is when some children experience bedwetting, sleepwalking or night terrors.

In the REM period, breathing becomes more rapid, irregular and shallow, eyes jerk rapidly and limb muscles are temporarily paralyzed. Brain waves during this stage increase to levels experienced when a person is awake. Also, heart rate increases, blood pressure rises, males develop erections and the body loses some of the ability to regulate its temperature. This is the time when most dreams occur, and, if awoken during REM sleep, a person can remember the dreams. Most people experience three to five intervals of REM sleep each night.

FMP: Tracking your sleep scientifically

You cannot talk about science and researches about sleep without knowing how to track a person's sleep scientifically. There are two common method for researchers to study sleep, one is through Polysomnography, the other is through the movement of the body during the sleep.

Polysomnography is a comprehensive recording of the biophysiological changes that occur during sleep. It is usually performed at night, when most people sleep, though some labs can accommodate shift workers and people with circadian rhythm sleep disorders and do the test at other times of day. The polysomnography monitors many body functions including brain (Electroencephalography aka EEG), eye movements (Electrooculography aka EOG), muscle activity orskeletal muscle activation (Electromyography aka EMG) and heart rhythm (Electrocardiography aka ECG) during sleep. After the identification of the sleep disorder sleep apnea in the 1970s, the breathing functions respiratory airflow and respiratory effort indicators were added along with peripheral pulse oximetry. 

Yet the problem with polysomnography is that, it usually require the test subject to sleep in an environment which is not their own, therefore it may accurately records all the data during the testing, it does not represent the test subject's sleep cycle or sleep state. All the wiring on the subject may also affect their sleep therefore the results are likely to be skewed.

The other method of tracking sleep is through the body's movement while at sleep. This is also the most common technique that is been used in modern mobile apps or products, they utilize the electronic component called "accelerometer", it monitors any slight movement at night and analyzed the data to calculate the result.

This method is much more common than Polysomnography as the subject can sleep in their own bed in their own room which should make them more comfortable for a better sleep, yet the single data of movement by accelerometer still suffers from accuracy, especially those mobile apps.

Dr. Christopher Winter, Medical Director, Charlottesville Neurology & Sleep Medicine, sleep medicine, neurology specialist, has tested several products, apps, and polysomnography to see if the results from these devices are aligned with each other.

Red indicates wakefulness, black is REM sleep, and blue indicates light (light blue) to deep (darker blue) sleep. The graphic shows the comparison very clear, the devices more or less keep up the data with polysomnography, some are relatively similar to the results polysomnography shows yet some are just far out in comparison. This test allows us to understand that commercial products or app may generate the results for your sleep but they are not always (some are never) going to represent a true story of your own sleep cycles.

Tuesday, 29 September 2015

FMP: Science of Sleep

As my fmp project is about something that helps people, or rather, reminds people to sleep on time. I think this is a good chance to explore things about this activity we do for about third of our entire life.
Sleep is a naturally recurring state of mind characterized by altered consciousness, relatively inhibited sensory activity, inhibition of nearly all voluntary muscles, and reduced interactions with surroundings. It is distinguished from wakefulness by a decreased ability to react to stimuli, but is more easily reversed than the state of hibernation or of being comatose. Mammalian sleep occurs in repeating periods, in which the body alternates between two highly distinct modes known as non-REM and REM sleep. REM stands for "rapid eye movement" but involves many other aspects including virtual paralysis of the body.

During sleep, most systems in an animal are in an anabolic state, building up the immune, nervous, skeletal, and muscular systems. Sleep in non-human animals is observed in mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, and fish, and, in some form, in insects and even in simpler animals such as nematodes. The internal circadian clock promotes sleep daily at night in diurnal species (such as humans) and in the day in nocturnal organisms (such as rodents). However, sleep patterns vary widely among animals and among different individual humans. Industrialization and artificial light have substantially altered human sleep habits in the last 100 years.

The science today still unable to answer the question of why do human need to sleep,  Some believe that sleep gives the body a chance to recuperate from the day's activities but in reality, the amount of energy saved by sleeping for even eight hours is miniscule - about 50 kCal, the same amount of energy in a piece of toast. And there are some other explanations too yet it is unlikely anyone of then is the single answer but all contribute a bit to the real answer. 

It seems like sleep does not really contribute much in anyway that is significant enough, however, sleep deprivation could lead to some serious consequences. If you've ever pulled an all-nighter, you'll be familiar with the following after-effects: grumpiness, grogginess, irritability and forgetfulness. After just one night without sleep, concentration becomes more difficult and attention span shortens considerably. 

With continued lack of sufficient sleep, the part of the brain that controls language, memory, planning and sense of time is severely affected, practically shutting down. In fact, 17 hours of sustained wakefulness leads to a decrease in performance equivalent to a blood alcohol level of 0.05% (two glasses of wine). This is the legal drink driving limit in the UK. In the US, more than 200000 car accidents are caused by sleepy drivers, killing people more than drunk-driving. It does not take long before brain and body could feel the result of sleep deprivation.

Sleep deprivation not only has a major impact on cognitive functioning but also on emotional and physical health. Disorders such as sleep apnoea which results in excessive daytime sleepiness have been linked to stress and high blood pressure. Research has also suggested that sleep loss may increase the chance of obesity because chemicals and hormones that play a key role in controlling appetite and weight gain are released during sleep.

Useful Links:

Friday, 21 August 2015

FMP:Designing Meaning

In this post, I am writing about my own thought, probably won't really reference much as  back ups for the idea I have in my mind, as this is not an academic piece of writing I suppose this is okay from time to time.

Henry Ford said: Every object tells a story, if you know how to read i[t. This quote sort of explained the idea fairly well, everything that has been produces contain some kind of meaning with itself when it has been sold to a customer. Yet the meaning of this very object will depends on how it's been used by its owner. I do understand that  this is kind of cheating for saying everything has a meaning but it relies on a person to define it. But I honestly think this is fairly true. A meaningful object to one does not mean it will also be meaningful for another person. Meaning by its definition, it's "what is intended to be, or actually is, expressed or indicated;signification; import:"

In designer's view, something that is important may not go the same with the consumers. This is going back to the experience model from Marc Hassenzahl.

Meaning is a personal thing, there is no rules or guidance towards meaning but purely generated from inside one's mind. We do not get attached on the same thing for everybody, there is a preference and there is story behind everyone, thus everyone is going to be different.

So what do I mean by bringing meaningful experience towards consumers? since nothing is meaningful for everyone, how can you possibly design an interaction in this regard. And to be honest, I can't. I can't do it for everything for everyone, I know its complexity in this topic. The reason I chose to pick this topic is that I feel IoT has been quite a buzz on the internet and a market. People enjoy the thought of having automatic everything or long distance monitoring/controlling things, this illusions of living in the future. And many manufactures will also solely produce such products which only because this is a new trend and just for the sake of earning money, they make it. Even the company I worked for asked me to develop a "Cheap" but "Reliable" project for people to turn a light on in London from New York. 

Here I am not criticizing those company are just money whore, what I wanted to say is, we should start thinking of bringing a much deeper meaning things to the market. Now that we have better understanding of many problems we should solve, by designing things that could solve problem from the core is one of the definitions I think is meaningful. Back to the topic, even thought I can't design objects that is meaningful to everyone, but i could design a object that is meaningful enough to the matter itself.

By meaningful enough to the matter itself, I mean the object is directly related to and has direct effects on its target thing it is designed to address. Everything is designed for a purpose, rather it's for someone in love, pain, for a better living, an easier operation of certain tasks or just entertainment. if that particular object is addressing the matter to its core, I would say it is a meaningful design. 

For intense, persuasive technology in my thesis, Why is that I dont think Carla Diana's example really isn't meaningful enough, it is still carries a meaning but not quite there, is because her examples only express "information", like most of the commercial products, they only show information, and hoping the users will change their behavior solely one the information they have been shown. Studies suggested that this type of persuasion will only have short term effect, and for those small number of samples that lasted long term, they are changing their behaviors for the sake of numbers, achievements, competitions. In an other words, they didn't do it for the purpose of better health or better world but an irreverent purpose.

Nike Fuel band is one of the examples of numbers driven activities 

So I think it is pretty clear that in terms of persuasive object of IoT, I am trying to figure out a different approach to the matter, I am trying to solve an issue from the heart of a person rather than showing numbers or forcing people to do so and praying they will truly accept the alternatives. Because people really don't like changes, including me, as it is easier to not change. in order to achieve the goal of this "Change" number itself will not be enough and thus in this context, not meaningful enough.

There are still many thins that need to be proved/disproved in order to support this theory, and I do understand that it could be wrong at many points, but this is what I am thinking at the moment and I am hoping to support the argument from my project and thesis rather than using this as a support to my paper. 

Friday, 14 August 2015

FMP: Persuasive Technology

Persuasive Technology is broadly defined as technology that is designed to change attitudes or behaviors of the users through persuasion and social influence, but not through coercion. Dr. BJ Fogg was one of the first people who started the idea and practicing experiments in the 1990s. Eventually developed a behaviour model of his own.

The model is constructed with three elements, Trigger, Ability, and Motivation. Theses three elements formed, for what we know, behaviours. For instance, When your mobile rings, what could be the reason for you not to answer the call i.e. was in a meeting, was in the shower/restroom, or did not feel like talking to that person...etc. In this simple situation, mobile phone rings, is the trigger, in the shower so could not answer the phone, is the ability, did not want to talk to that person, is the motivation. These all three factors have to happen in the same moment one after the other in order to initiate a behaviour. missing one then the behaviour would not happen. 

This model clearly demonstrate that behaviour does not come easily but through a close relationship with  human psychology (motivation). Before we begin to change behaviours, we should understand how people is triggered and motivated to the matter, as well as their ability of performing such behaviour. 

Fogg then further propose a behavior grid, that shows method  for matching target behaviors with solutions for achieving those behaviors.

Each fifteen way of changing behaviour represent different psychology strategies and persuasive technique. And for different behaviour you are persuading should apply different method. 

Persuasive technology is already been widely applied in the digital space of our world, facebook, google, amazon and more are the example of persuasive technology. for example, Facebook could send you an email notification about a photo you are tagged in, that is the trigger, then depends on the situation, you could immediately click the link to see that photo, motivation in this case is already there as you are urge to see what photo is that. Once you are on facebook you might common the photo or start browsing other contents. This persuasion is been done so well that we are not even aware of it. 

Any online advertisement could be its own persuasive technology, they encourage the audience to perform something they did not originally intended. 

Wednesday, 12 August 2015

FMP: Operand Conditioning

I have mentioned Operand Conditioning in the last post, saying some products or services use this technique to change one's behavior. The principle seems pretty simple but I think it is still worthwhile to explore the technique further.

Operand conditioning is a learning process in which behavior is sensitive to, or controlled by its consequences. For example, a child may learn to open a box to get the candy inside, or learn to avoid touching a hot stove. In contrast, classical conditioning causes a stimulus to signal a positive or negative consequence; the resulting behavior does not produce the consequence. For example, the sight of a colorful wrapper comes to signal "candy", causing a child to salivate, or the sound of a door slam comes to signal an angry parent, causing a child to tremble. The study of animal learning in the 20th century was dominated by the analysis of these two sorts of learning, and they are still at the core of behavior analysis.

In an other words, Behaviors have consequences, there are two main types of consequences: Reinforcement and Punishment, each one of them has two types of consequences: Positive and Negative. Reinforcement is to increase the tendency of the target behavior will occur, Positive Reinforcement is to add an extra thing to increase the possibility, I.e. rewards. Negative Reinforcement is something that it's been taken away in an effort to increase the tendency of target behavior occurs, I.e. completing target reinforcement will remove any warning sounds/sights.

Punishment on the other hand, is to decrease the target behavior will occur again, same with reinforcement, Positive Punishment is adding something, Negative Punishment is to take something away.

So what product uses Operand Conditioning to change your behavior, Nike Run app is a pretty good example. The app tracks your work out duration and distance and over pace, when you meet a certain level you can unlock the "trophies" to honor your effort. this is, to me, a straight Positive Reinforcement. By rewarding you "achievements" (trophies) to increase the tendency of "target behavior" (working out)

Tuesday, 11 August 2015

FMP: Aesthetic of Friction- Marc Hassenzahl

A famous psychology experiment of giving a small child one marshmallow, and tell him/she if they can resist eating that marshmallow, they can get two later on. The result mainly show that the kid will attempt to resist eating that marshmallow but mostly fail in the end. This in psychology is called "temporal discounting" 

Temporal Discounting is a tendency to give greater value to rewards as they move away from their temporal horizons and towards the "now". However, the preference reversal occurs when both rewards are set to be the future by a little difference, for example, a £100  in a week or a £150 in a week and a half, they usually choose to wait a week and a half. But, when the little reward comes to now, the preferences maybe reversed again. Pigeons have the same tendency over the preferences. 

So what does this have to do with the interaction design, or just design world in general?

Lets say we want to change one's health state by convincing him not to consume too much sugar. In this case, the little reward is eating sugar, the large future reward is a healthier body. Yet the idea of better health is abstract and vague, you maybe able to persuade a person in a short term, but in the long run, persuasion will turn into a self-regulation. with the uncertainty of future reward( a vague idea of health), the person might prefer the little immediate reward (eating sugar). And this is where persuasive technology comes in.

Persuasive technology is designed to change attitudes or behaviours of the users through persuasion and social influence, not through coercion.

The persuasive technology model are fairly simple, they usually provide basic information and feedback, nor employ a very simple model of conditioning behaviour.


(Conditioning Behaviour/Operant Conditioning  )

Although persuasive technology offers feedback or operant conditioning, human is much more complicated than pigeons even we have the same time-discounting. Human have insight of the world and cannot be forced in to a motivation machines. They need something else help them to transform, to trick them into motivation.

To achieve this, we must forget the socialised culture of design, which is making things easy and convenient, because the aesthetic convenience does not instill change. What we actually need, is an aesthetic of friction, through this friction, but not a coercion, people will then to start behave like the way that object is meant to deliver. 

Although Marc Hassenzahl did not mention anything about meaningful experience in his presentation, I feel this still could be a definition for it, and it is very different from what Carla Diana has given, right here he focus more on the psychology side of interaction, base on psychological studies and design to shape a person's behaviour in a better way, or not!

What's interesting is that the projects he shows on the surface all have very clear statement of what it is trying to express, but the user still owns a choice of accepting the message or not, in an other word, the devices are not trying to force people into a motivation, just like he said, human cannot be forced to become something, all they need is a trigger which to help them develop the behaviour themselves. 
The devices make the suggestion and still offer choices is what draws me into his thinking. 

Monday, 10 August 2015

FMP: Meaningful Design with IoT?- Carla Diana

Internet of Things, by Henry Holtzman's quote, used to be something with RFID tag inside them. IoT was meant to be objects that has some sort of digital shadow(RFID), and we have a database for everything to allow as to manipulate, share and short in a virtual environment. Yet this idea was originated in the 1990s. The meaning of internet of things has become something else in the recent years.

Right now internet of things might mean something that  actually have embedded processors in them and can achieve some form of communication. The interesting thing is, they did not anticipate to have that many device having a computing power, the anticipation was having cheap RFID tags, yet they did not get cheaper as quickly as microchips or processors. 

The interaction we have with IoT no longer remaining having to say "Here is what I'm doing and here is why I'm doing it, now help me" but assist us in a automatic and intuitive way.

There are a lot of expectation in the future of IoT, twitting banana? smart toilets? all short of possibilities, but why would you want a twitting banana anyway? what is the meaning hides within? How do we design a meaningful products for IoT? and how do we figure that out?

Carla said, a meaningful object of IoT, has the ability to turn things into knowing, because their connections to the internet.
(Hierarchy of Meaning)

The data is the rawest form of information, when a data is translated into a more organised language then it becomes information. And we take the information and translated it again into a more human form, we have knowledge. However, the wisdom is something that becomes to large for a single device to handle, it should require a larger system of serverise or psychology...etc to achieve a decent result. 

Carla organises these knowledge into three main frameworks: The knowledge about selves, knowledge about others and knowledge about the world.

What Carla has suggested about the meaningful design with IoT, in a simple term is to create a knowledge with the object and not just information. And it is something that ambient around us that provide us the knowledge instead of using computers and keyboards to visualise all the datas into something we read. its more of a physical approach to the matter instead of simple graphics and numbers. 

This is quite an interesting topic, I mean I often wonder that what exactly is meaningful design to us. the word "meaning" is extremely hard to define and usually only related and matters to individuals. But if we look in a much broader view, we could find some common in between those individuals and trying to conclude what cloud be a meaningful design. And Carla's point is actually pretty convincing in a way. By delivering knowledge to a user, and if the user care about this knowledge, then the device would be a meaningful design.

Thursday, 14 May 2015

Social Object: Berlin Things Con

This is like the most important time for the project, by exposing our idea and our work we get the feedbacks from the public opinion, and in this type of conference, mostly opinions from the experts, too. And this is why I worked so hard to have my things finished to a level that is presentable. 

The second model is a smaller design but with exactly the same function, I made it a week before the conference, was a rush so didn't record the making process, which is a shame.

The conference was very interesting, sadly I didn't make that many contacts. As I feel most of them were going for the talks and workshops, not so much for the show. But I still got some fairly interesting contact nonetheless.

I was invited to another conference in Berlin as well end of September this year, its all about wearable tech for that conference. The guy told me to contact him if I am interested in that conference, and I really am, is just the time is 23-26 September which is like the end of FMP probably cant attend that conference.

The conferences was kind of interesting for me as it was about technologies and lots. Sadly the workshops I attended was not that attractive to me for some reason. Talks were generally good to see some of the things happening in this world now, but at the same time it looked like there were some speakers were there to advertise their business, which I am not that convinced to see.

The overall experience with Things Con is quite new to me, I have attended several exhibitions as exhibitor to show cast my work, but mostly within the field of art and craft or product/furniture design. This was the first for a technology based conference. I have mixed feeling for the Things Con, I really like to see talks and workshops and networking with people through my work, but i don't feel comfortable with both happening in the same time, because you can't focus on one very well, and the public attention to your work falls dramatically, and this did happen. So I had mix feeling about it, still pretty beneficial and worth going nonetheless. 

                                            Time lapse for Berlin Things Con

Wednesday, 29 April 2015

Social Object: The Making

So its time to build my project into a usable product, since I have done the similar project in my BA, I have general understanding of how the things would go. And to be honest I have no design on how the product is going to look like, I mean, unless I can etch my own circuit board and have control with everything, I wont be able to design a very slim product with high precision.

So I kind of making it up as i go. And it is quite a challenge since I like my product to look like futuristic and  clean. therefore I start up just building a container to hold my arduino board, and I started from that point slowly adding more components to it.

At this point, I have everything mocked up and soldered to a prototyping shield for Arduino, that way I can have a nice even platform to work on and can still use my arduino board for future project.

I attached my radio wave detector to arduino board and that whole piece will be the main body of the product.

The white square is my peltier unit, and a temperature sensor attached on the "heat" side to monitor the temperature.

Attached a switch to the rear of the body, the switch turns on the arduino and the detector but it also acts as a safety should the user cannot stand the heat, they can shut it down immediately.

Test the thing every now and then during the making process is extremely important, as I had some awful experience when I finished everything then to find out some wired has come off the solder, a real pain. That is why carefully put everything together and making sure nothing is wrong can save you a lot of time when building projects like this.(for some reason on the the LED doesn't lid, couldn't do much with it as it's built inside the detector circuit board).

This two photos are sort of fail example. This is when I attempted to attach the body to an arm strap sort of thing and failed. I did not use this material in my final product but it's worth recording it as I spent so much time on how make it.

This is when I started to paint the final product, I did this several times, paint on and using sand paper to sand it of, to create a much nicer and even finish.

And this is the final product photo, I tried to make it as professional as I could. I am glad that I didn't fail that much, still lots of room for improvement, but at least didn't fail that much.

Social Object: The Code

Here is the code I used for arduino, it is a very simple code as the radio wave detector is shop bought, and the only thing im extracting from is an analog value.

As I said, this is a very simple code, but it works fine for my project. And simpler the code can be, the less thing that can go wrong, even if they do, it will be much easier to find and fix the bug, so I am generally happy with this code. 

Saturday, 18 April 2015

Social Object: Nomophobia

Let's take a closer look at something that just starting to emerge since the last two decades, Nomophobia. Nomophobia stands for No-Mobile-Phone-Phobia.Its the fear of being out of contact from mobile phones. To some others the term "phobia" may be a misuse as it to majority, it's caused by normal anxiety. 

With the changes of technologies, new challenges are coming up on a daily basis. New kinds of phobias have emerged, the so called techno-phobias. Since the first mobile phone in the market in 1983, it has become one of the mainstreams in the majority of societies. Shambare, Rugimbana & Zhowa (2012) claimed that cell phones are "possibly the biggest non-drug addiction of the 21st century, and that colleges students may spend up to nine hours every day on their phones that can lead to dependence on such technologies as a driver of modern life and an example of "a paradox of technology". that is both freeing and enslaving.

Society today has become over dependent on technology. which may not be a bad thing but we need to watch out for the potential problem it could cause us if not careful. Personally I have this type of "anxiety" too, I believe most people have it as well, and it is a challenge to fight against the desire of having mobile phones by out hands. This is probably the reason why it pains me so much to develop this project as I do not want to be the subject under my own design. But on the other hand, I understand the consequences of this if without proper attention. 

The researches and the awareness many people trying to put up are convincing, the fear of loneliness with the presents of technology have driven mankind into a endless cycle. You don't want to be left out, so you share, post, networking over the social networks, the more you networking over internet, the more you are isolated in the real world, then you feel left out and then back to the beginning. The truth is, we can do batter than this, we have the capability to learn, to adapt from different situation, and we are able to indicate the problems we have. So why not take the chance to make a difference before it's all too late? 

My project seems to toggle the area of Nomophobia, but really what I am trying to express through this project, is no difference from all the videos and researches wanted to say. Internet is harmful to our social life when not being used correctly, the symptoms are  already clear, the only thing that matters is what do we choose to do? 

External Read:
Mobile phone overuses:

Internet addiction disorder:

Break Free from Nomophobia:


Friday, 17 April 2015

Social Object: Peltier Unit

Peltier effect, also known as Thermoelectric Cooling, is commonly used in mini fridge, it acts as the cooling agent. The Peltier effect is the presence of heating or cooling at an electrified junction of two different conductors and is named after French physicist Jean Charles Athanase Peltier, who discovered it in 1834. When a current is made to flow through a junction between two conductors A and B, heat may be generated (or removed) at the junction.

Peltier Module uses this effect, with two pieces of ceramic plates cover the each side of the junction, when a current flows through, one side becomes freezing cold (down to -30 degree Celsius) the other becomes burning hot (up to 70 degree Celsius). This effect can be used to generate electricity, measure temperature or change the temperature of objects. Because the direction of heating and cooling is determined by the polarity of the applied voltage, thermoelectric devices can be used as temperature controllers. 

The most peltier unit runs 12v DC, but with my experience, anything lower than 12v will still work, just the matter of how effective it will be. For this project I'm using 9v battery, a brief test confirmed that the effect will still take place with 9v input. And so the Peltier Module is my feedback mechanism.

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Social Object: Radio wave Detector Prototype Three

After some research on DIY Radio Wave Detector, turns out it is not that easy. I both technical and component terms.

So to save time and budget, I went for a commercial product (hope this is not cheating), GSM Radio wave (Microwave) Detector. The detector was made to find radiowaves used in communication, which is perfect for my need.

What I did, was hack the detector slightly, so I can get a measure from it. In side the detector, there is a vibration motor, upon detection signals it will vibrate. I removed the motor and connect the negative leg to Arduino analog input, So Arduino could read the value of its detection. And from that value, I will be able to use it to trigger my feedback. 

Friday, 3 April 2015

Speculative Design: More about Cyber-warfare

After some researches, it turns out that cyber-warfare is such a grey area in legal term, United Nations has got international laws to cover human rights and laws of war. But there is none which specified activity such as cyber-wars. Since there is no a single agreement on what defines cyber-warfare, in the political sense this can be really tricky.

As the video describes. if somebody causes damage to a nation through internet and cyber-activity, does that qualified as an act of war? Anything done over the cyberspace is as clear as mud, there is nothing to restrict or prevent the possible cyber-crime. This clearly shows the lack of awareness over the issue of cyber-wars. Maybe is because the harm it causes is yet to reach the point where it can affect the general public in a dramatic scale, but there is a sign.Powerful countries worldwide have started establishing cyber-activity units, they have specialized army for cyberwars. And few documentaries have shown how much they have done already in the military.

It seems like cyberwarfare is really a thing we should look into