Inspirational Bits: Towards a shared understanding of the digital material (published at CHI 2011).
In any design process, a medium's properties need to be considered. This is nothing new in design. Still we find that in HCI and interactive systems design the properties of a technology are often glossed over. That is, technologies are black-boxed without much thought given to how their distinctive properties open up design possibilities. In this paper we describe what we call inspirational bits as a way to become more familiar with the design material in HCI, the digital material. We describe inspirational bits as quick and dirty but fully working systems in both hardware and software built with the aim of exposing one or several of the dynamic properties of a digital material. We also show how they provide a means of sharing design knowledge across the members of a multi-disciplined design team.
Background Photo: John Paul Bichard