The Reactive Colours Project: Demonstrating Participatory and Collaborative Design Methods for the Creation of Software for Autistic Children
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This paper extends my research interest (from Output 1) in the experiential capacity of computation and, in particular, the contribution made by end-users to the process of software design. I focus on the tensions in the collaborative design process which occur as a result of competing disciplinary perspectives. While empirical and speculative research methods can be opposed or contradictory, I argue for the need to maintain a balance between empirical and speculative research methods. In particular, I stress the significance to the design process of understanding the idiosyncratic behavioural patterns of individuals. This claim is discussed in the context of my work on tangible interfaces for embodied play. I present outcomes which emerge from speculative research methods, outcomes which cannot be obtained from orthodox empirical approaches. Their research significance lies in the fact that autistic children are shown playing in an environment and claiming it as their own in ways which directly inform the design process. The paper was selected as the winner of the 'International Award for Excellence' in the design field by the editors and the International Advisory Board of the journal Design Principles and Practices. As the winning author, I have been invited to present at the Second International Conference on Design Principles and Practices at the University of Miami in January 2008.
Design Principles and Practices Conference, Imperial Collage London / Design Principles and Practices, An Internet Journal, pp.13
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