Saturday, 31 March 2012

Plastico, Westport, Co.Mayo

plastico logo

Based in Westport Co. Mayo, Ireland, We at Plastico pride ourselves in providing the highest quality range of plastics and customised fabricated products which create maximum impact at point of purchase or enhancement at point of display. Plastico's superior workmanship and ability to listen to and meet our customers needs has seen Plastico grow from strength to strength from its inception in 2005. Talk to us about your needs and we will guarantee to give you a product that both you and Plastico can be proud of.

The reason for choosing this company is that they were very helpful and professional with helping to solve my design problem. The company sent out samples in the post the first day that I contacted them and this really helped me to clarify what material I exactly needed. Another thing that I felt company excelled at compared to other companies was that the owner took time to explain the different methods for polishing edges and how other companies do a cheaper job but with less success to do do what I was looking for. In my design, one of the challenges is to maximize the light that bounces through the acrylic. One way to increase the sensibility of my prototype is to have the edges buffed to a polished edge so that I have the maximum amount of light being used from the IR LED's. I will take photos of the acrylic when it gets delivered. 

Friday, 30 March 2012

Week 10 Semester 2

This video is part of a series that I am posting as a blog about my weekly experience of doing a masters in Interactive Media and Design at the University of Limerick.

Hunt Museum proposal

Below are images that our group created to give to the curator and director of the hunt museum for our proposal. We have finalized the measurements and over the next week we plan to go forward to the making stage of our project.

Ceiling plan of where our projection will circulate. 

Floor plan of where the projection table will sit in the middle of the room

Thursday, 29 March 2012

Hunt Museum project

As part of the ‘Contemporary Art in the Public Realm’ module in Interactive media, we were given a brief to explore the concepts of scaling, miniature and invisibility within the Hunt museum. We have decided to create an instillation piece that would display a catalogue of the pieces that reflect the concept of the projects outline mentioned above. We propose to build an interactive table that would project the objects we choose onto the ceiling within the Captains room. This interactive table will be 24 inches square and a height of 35 inches. There will be four buttons on the piece that will allow the user in interactive with the projections, to choose an era with the catalogs of work, to stop the frame it will be on and to move back and forward. The projection will be animated to circulate on the roof and this will be very subtle so that it would not affect anybody with epilepsy. The interactive table will be either a dark green in color or black that it is in fitting with the color scheme within the room.

This video show the area in which the projection table will be. I feel that the design of the table will have to be subtle so that it fits with the feel and color of the room. It should be visible, but invisible at the same time.

This image is the picture of the ceiling, where the projection will circulate around the centre piece.

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Dr. Gabriela Avram's class on Mobile and Local

Today's class was the last of the series of lectures and from here on we will be looking at our individual projects and the research behind these.

Today's talk was very about being Local and mobile. I felt this was a very relevant discussion considering that today's technological advancements has allowed us to be more mobile within our own communities. Mobile phones allow a group of friends to communicate or a business to generate sales. Considering the function of mobile phones, they serve their purpose very well. The other interesting fact that I came across was that it was the military that designed the mobile phone to allow more accurate communication between their commanders in the field.  Another interesting fact that came about as part of research was that in an emergency or if its urgent we tend to call rather than text.

Another fact that we discussed is the use of CPS by the police to know the whereabouts of people who would be on probation. This brought up another interesting point that because of this technology it would force those who are wearing such devices to consider re-structuring their place with time, considering that the device they wear has to be re-charged every 5 hours, this would involve the person to get up in the night to recharge their device that can't be taken off, including structuring their occupation.

Finally we also discussed the layer apps for Iphone and how this allows augmented reality. So for example, the app that allows you to look at the sky and by doing so it will indicate and show you what stars you are looking at and the consolations. So layer apps are going in the direction of 2.0 Also 4 square and private square was also discussed.

Monday, 26 March 2012

Arduino developments on the interactive bin

This is currently a working prototype of the circuit board that we are making that allows an on/off switch to control a 12 volt motor. This is achieved by using a relay. The board out puts 5V and then this controls the relay. In turn this will open and close the relay to allow the motor to be controlled. 

This is a closer version of the circuit layout. This will be changed to perhaps have two relays and it will also be turning on/off a light inside the bin. Also what I'm working on is the motor, trying to reverse the motor with out switching wires. This is possible by using a double pole relay. Hopefully I get it working soon, and then I will post a diagram if my circuit board to help others. 

Saturday, 24 March 2012

The therapeutic process of Art

Art Therapy: Healing Grief and Loss  This is a link that I came across that explores how the process of art can not only unfold emotional barriers, but also, the therapeutic process can on another level serve to enhance a persons life. 

Friday, 23 March 2012

Week 9 Semester 2

This video is part of a series that I am posting as a blog about my weekly experience of doing a masters in Interactive Media and Design at the University of Limerick.

Thursday, 22 March 2012

Meetings today about FYP

Today I went seeking for an exhibition space and I came across a space close to Sarsfield bridge which is a very bright open space which is ideal for the exhibition. This is a major development and I feel that when we do the exhibition of the work of the therapeutic classes, this place will be perfect.

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

More on the FTIR Research

FTIR multi-touch display how-to guide. I came across this link and like the other sites that I came across, this also gives a step by step guide to building the multi-touch display.

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Sowing A Synthesizer using fabric

Today we had artists, visual and musicians, who were giving us Master Classes from Sweden. We learnt how to create Synthesizers and to sow this into fabric. The thread acted like solder. I really enjoyed this, because it was new to me and I never knew that such thread existed for stitching. Below I have included some photos of my work, and at the end of today's class, we got into small groups to create music (like a small ensemble). This was indeed a very enjoyable class and it was great that these professionals took time to share their wonderful findings with students at the University. 

This shows the circuit board that we used

Here I have connected all the components including battery and speaker

Here you see in detail how the components were connected by stitching

Monday, 19 March 2012

How to build a MT - 50 multitouch table

This is a a site that was sent on to me by one of my lectures. It explains how to build a MT - 50 Multitouch Table. It breaks down all the components, software, and gives you a step by step guide to how to build this. It was very helpful because it provided links to websites to further my understanding, and also to how to excess open source software. A great site for any who are researching in this area. 

On the website, download the pdf, mt-50_multitouch_table_DIY_instructions_1.pdf 

Saturday, 17 March 2012

Research Paper

This is a research paper I came across about the Design and Implementation of an FTRI device. The Paper is called and can be viewed at, Design and implementation of an FTIR camera-based multi-touch display. I will dive into more detail about this next week.

FTIR Multitouch and Display Device

This evening I was further researching possible solution to display the art work from my focus groups. At the moment we have developed a lot of material, that is all strong art work that shows the process the group has went through. I had previously been looking a reactables and now I have been further researching into new possibilities. The link FTIR Multitouch and Display Device, is a good site that explains a possible solution to display the work that we are doing. I have also come across a research paper that looks at this in further detail, Visualization and prototyping of a multitouch display device. I feel that this could be a a good solution, an from what the group has been talking about, in relation to what we want  to display, this technology could be very appropriate. 

Another site also showed me the process and different steps needed to develop this Multitouch Display Device. They were explaining how it was possible to create this device out of the basic elements that most people would have available to them. 

If you click on the following link, How to build a FTIR, it will show you a video and all the basic elements that you need to build you touch screen interface. The video below is a great outline of how to build the table. But what I still need to figure out is the software that I will need to allow me to present my images. I would imagine when your coding, it would be pacifically for touchscreen.

Friday, 16 March 2012

Week 8 Semester 2

This video is part of a series that I am posting as a blog about my weekly experience of doing a masters in Interactive Media and Design at the University of Limerick. 

Thursday, 15 March 2012

Interesting blog

Today I came across an interesting blog about Art Therapy. It helps those how are unsure about the area and provides useful links to further your research. The site can be found here, Art Therapy.

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Presentation day

Today I gave my presentation on the Book, Art Therapy and Computer Technology. I used Prezi to present my findings and arguments. The class seemed to enjoy it and I had good fun sharing my knowledge within this area. To view the Prezi, you can watch it from the Prezi website on the following link, Book review on Cathy Malchiodi's Art Therapy and Computer Technology.

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Emotional design

Today's presentation was the last one within the class. This was very interesting, and I think in many ways, it could relate to everybody considering we are all on the same boat, having to do our final year project. I really enjoyed the class activity of (eye bombing). This is were you try and find the character within an object, by sticking eyes on it.

The group highlighted professions within Interaction design that look at this as an important approach to designing, like Don Norman, who talks about these design elements. I felt that from this presentation, it helped to understand that within every design, we could possibility think along these terms of finding the character within, to make objects more fun and exciting to look at and use. Good work guys. 

A video that will help explain art therapy

This is a video that helps explain art therapy and how it can be beneficial to patients.

Monday, 12 March 2012

International Art therapy organization without Boarders

This is an organization that Cathy Malchiodi helped to set in in 2010 to support art therapist worldwide. 

Saturday, 10 March 2012

Adlerian therapy

In the use of group work, Adlerian therapy works to develop group cohesion, which mirrors healthy functioning in social settings.  Members of the group are able to develop a sense of belonging and community that may be unavailable in their present situation.  Due to the flexibility and integrative nature of this theory, individuals, families, and groups are helped with the tools of this approach.  Contrasting this however, Adlerian therapy has its limitations, as it does not provide immediate solutions to client problems with more of a long-term focus.  With less of a simplistic approach, this therapy is suited more for individuals who are prepared to take the time to understand family of origin issues. 

A good link to read on more of this can be found at Adlerian Therapy from a Christian Perspective.

Friday, 9 March 2012

Week 7 Semester 2

This video is part of a series that I am posting as a blog about my weekly experience of doing a masters in Interactive Media and Design at the University of Limerick. 

Thursday, 8 March 2012

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

Art Therapy

This is a short video made by Mia BloomBecker. The field of Art Therapy is growing, but many people still don't know what it entails. This is a film that has interviews with Shaun McNiff, the Dean at Lesley University and Art Therapy expert, and Jen Malloy and Maddie Dickerson. 

Tuesday, 6 March 2012

Display of Interactive Artwork: Pilot Test of two Different Interfaces

Presented at SIRC 2007 – The 19th Annual Colloquium of the Spatial Information Research Centre University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand December 6th-7th 2007

The display of interactive artwork plays an increasingly important role in modern museums and galleries. However, the reaction of visitors has not been extensively tested to date. This paper present a pilot study that investigates viewer's reactions towards two interactive display prototypes that were designed to present famous artwork in a new and more engaging way. They describe the first iteration cycle of a questionnaire that they composed which especially targets viewer satisfaction in a gallery context. The results of their first pilot study indicate that (1) interactive displays in galleries can create an engaging and exciting experience and (2)  that they can be especially suitable to present education about art in a new and more involving way.

Dr. Gabriela Avram's class

Today we were looking further into research methods for doing own individual research. We discussed quantitative and qualitative methods. We discussed things like, is it necessary to create a hypothesis, if so, then what ways will I try to prove it. In order to do my analysis, I can use one or two theories to inform my data collection. The theoretical framework will inspire the data collection. My research will be ethnographically based. One of the key things that Gabriela highlighted was  the fact to be reflective through out my research because I 'm meant to be a reflective practitioner.

Grounder theory is a method for collecting data. You start with data collection, then you try to categories and find a relationship from the original data. Is there a relationship between age, material used, paper etc. So the idea is to collect a lot of data, to try and confirm my ideas, or do the results seem contradicting, then collect more data until you see a pattern.

How do I represent my findings. This could be done using cooperative evaluation. Getting members of the public to test your early prototypes and get feedback to what could be amended or improved. You might find that things on your prototype could be improved and made better before you make your final design.

The idea in my thesis is to prove that I have learnt about interaction design and highlight this in my process by being reflective. Most designers use stories, stories that you find in your data. You abstract the key information which will help to inform your design decisions.

The introduction to my thesis will place the work in context, what is my field, exhibitions, pick up the questions that relate to me, where, when, what are the circumstances, people who are visiting, who will the user be, what ideas that I might possible have. Prove my decision, and create an arguement to as why there is need for my design. Do this by researching other papers that have been wrote. Chapter 3 is the methodologies that I will use, UCD process, focused groups, how long the research will be going on for.

Monday, 5 March 2012

The BinBot re-design

Here are some of the final design sketches for the BinBot. It has taken the shape of a frog for aesthetic reasons.  We are finalising the measurements and building the bin this week. Still working on  the electronics and programming, but it will be very exciting when frogee is munching good old rubbish.

Saturday, 3 March 2012

Living Laboratories: Making and Curating Interactive Art

Living Laboratories: Making and Curating Interactive Art 

Lizzie Muller and Ernest Edmonds
Creativity and Cognition Studios, University of Technology, Sydney

This paper describes the development of laboratory concepts in the making and curating of interactive art, in which the exhibition becomes a site for collaboration between curators, artists, and audiences. It describes Beta_space, an experimental public venue that seeks to realise the concept of the exhibition as living laboratory 
through the participatory qualities of interactive computer-based art. The paper places this initiative within an emerging phenomenon of hybrid production and exhibition spaces. It argues that the evolution of such concepts has been hampered by the continued distinctions, within traditional cultural institutions, among art, science and technology, object and experience, creation and consumption. 

Friday, 2 March 2012

Week 6 Semester 2

This video is part of a series that I am posting as a blog about my weekly experience of doing a masters in Interactive Media and Design at the University of Limerick.

Dr. Gabriela Avram's class on WordPress

Today we discussed about WordPress and its fonder. WordPress is a website management tool which was created by Matt Mullenweg. It is a very versatile option to use to build a website. There is a wide community using WordPress including forms which allows people to help one another. It's good for those who are not used to HTML and allows a user to choose from plugins which can make your website much more interactive and personal.
We also talked about SEO (search engine operations) and ways in which to get a better rating from your website. Such easy tasks of uploading new content daily (which Google loves) can get you better ratings. A easy and good way to do this is to link your website to a blog or/and Twitter. 
Also a good plug in to have is Google analytices which would allow you to see who has been to your site, what computer they use and operating system. Also analytices can tell you what page they left from on your website which could potentially help you to see if this page could be improved.
Final note, as you know I'm using Blogger to post daily on, but I'm almost tempted to change to WordPress. Much more exciting, more options, more fun. I will think about this over the weekend.

Group presentation

Today the group presenting were discussing the work being developed in the domain of AI. They discussed how computer games are studying real world experiences and finding new ways to represent this in the virtual world. This was a very exciting presentation because I was unaware of the many new developments within this area. Computer simulation is a field which is growing extremely fast with such developments which allow close to real world experiences. In Japan, it seems that enormous amounts of money is invested into making the user experience closer to that of the real world. 

I found the class activity very enjoyable. The group programed a set of tasks/puzzles that had to be solved to get the prize at the end. There were different levels to the game and once you passed each level, you got to the next stage. What I feel was important was the group allowing the class to experience AI within the one of the puzzles. This reflected well within the formal presentation and their topics discussed.

For me this was very enjoyable and clever how the activity was put together, great fun and the class really enjoyed it. Well done guys.  

Thursday, 1 March 2012

The final touch to Geocaching

Today me and the group put the final touch to the Geocaching presentation. We typed up the core elements to the presentation and how we felt the group activity went. It is all in a pdf file at the moment so when I upload this to my website I will put a link to it here. Also, we a putting the final touch to a video we made on the presentation, so I will upload it here over the next few days, with a .mov file of the presentation we done. So the Geocaching presentation comes to a fun but enjoyable end. Cheers guys (Conor and Grace) for being such a great group to work with : )

Dr. Gabriela Avram's class on Research Methods

From analysis you draw conclusions, research is done systematically. My background is an artist which is very important to state at the beginning of my thesis. I have confidence in this area... which allows the reader to understand the angle in which I present my argument.
Research has to be done ethnically, I have to follow a code of conduct, respecting the opinion of the people being studied, respecting the data to be honest about my findings and results.
I should decide on a hypothesis and try to prove if it is right or wrong, conclude why I was wrong and what improvements I could make.
Getting to know the world is called epistemology. In my research I should take this approach to understand the user, so that my decision is informed from this primary research. An example of a good argument  for a thesis would be, 'My Masters Thesis focuses on participatory design techniques that would engage older people with dementia in design of digital technologies. I recruited and worked with numerous older adults and people with dementia and developed technological prototypes in response to the needs they articulated.' This would be a good example of designing technology to support mental well being.