Archive for January, 2012

January 23, 2012

My sense of time is…

January 17, 2012

Picking Brains & Playing Games

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Thanks for your interest in participating! 

Unfortunately, I have already received 12 responses,
and my schedule can not accomodate any more meetings.

However, I would still like to stay in touch with you! 
Shoot me an email at < > if you would like
to participate in future brain picking sessions (TBA in March).

Thanks again!

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I want to meet and talk to you.


A 30 minute time block in which we play little games like mad-libs, drawing exercises (simple don’t worry), and making up fake rules to define the universe. Just little participatory exercises and informal conversation to help me understand a little bit about how you think about and use timekeepers.


Next week… January 23rd to January 31st

At any time which is convenient for you.


I will come to you!


Because… you want an interesting break in your day // you have an interest in random things // you like talking to friendly people like me //  you wanna help a sister out // you care about grad students // you think research is interesting // you think thinking about time is worth some time // you like design or design students // you hate your alarm clock


Email me at

January 15, 2012



To understand habits and behaviors involving timekeepers, planning, and work-nonwork management I created the following workbook (shown below). See Below for photos of the completed workbooks. Since then I have met with Denise to revise the questionnaire in order to create a series of interpretive, open-ended, engaging activities.

Below are a few of the highlights from participants’ workbooks:

The Experience of Time:

  • Choosing alternate rhythms to frame progress. Creating breaks through specific events in the day, or something as simple as working until the last song on a CD is played
    Note: Connection to phase synchronization, an alternate :  “compositions based on the extended repetition of brief elegant fragments that weave in and out of an aural tapestry, devoid of traditional western musical events” 

Awareness of Timekeeper:

  • Sound of clock sometimes draws attention to it
    Note: Why do clocks tick, what are those experiences like when we become aware of the ticking, why do we become aware in that moment and not others?

Sharing Calendars:

  • Mother gives calendar with birthdays/anniversaries of friends and family to her children, This year the sister now returns the favor to the mother
  • She shares her long term goals with others in order to retain/remember them

Physical behaviors & time progression:

  • Desk cal only serves aesthetic purposes on desk, but she gets satisfaction from ripping off each day
    Note: Ripping off the day as a daily exercise: What if daily act could cue into nothing part of brain/create a mundane meditative task to create a break in the day?. Providing daily office gossip. Daily office clues for ongoing scavenger hunt.


In Progress. See beginning exercises below:



Week 1: Jan 10-17

  • Begin Taxonomy of Timekeepers and Qualities of Timekeepers
  • Initial Interviews: Create Workbook/ Begin interviews

Week 2: Jan 17- 24

  • Complete Taxonomy of Timekeepers and Qualities of Timekeepers
  • Adjust Workbook
  • Complete 10 interviews with Workbook
  • End of week: Document Study (Taxonomy/Interview): Objectives/Conclusions/Moving Forward

Week 3: Jan 24-31

  • Identify Audience: Background Research, Interview & Observe
  • End of Week: Document Study: (Audience Observation/Research) Objectives/Conclusions/Moving Forward

Week 4: Jan 31- Feb 7

  • Create & Disperse Timekeeping Exercise to Audience
  • Begin creating small Provocations/Probes

Week 5: Feb 7- Feb 14

  • Continue Timekeeping Exercise
  • Continue Provocations/Probes
  • End of Week: Document Study: (Exercise & Provocations/Probes) Objectives/Conclusions/Moving Forward

Week 6: Feb 21 – Feb 28

  • Prepare for Orals
  • Present



January 5, 2012

2012 . Road Trip & Refocus

Happy New Year!

This week I have been working in Dallas, Texas. I have been spending time with my road trip partner and best friend Matt Weiss. We travelled from Raleigh, NC – Atlanta, GA – Gulf of Mexico (in Mississippi) – New Orleans, LA – Chappell Hill, TX – Austin,TX – and Dallas,TX.

I am reflecting and refocusing to prepare for the next and final semester. The trip has been a nice time to relax, but also to spend time talking about participatory design and other similar subjects- as we are both connected with the College of Design (Master of Architecture & Graphic Design). He has relocated here for a Americore Program called Building Community Workshop, an architecture and city planning organization with a focus on sustainable community development.

Having an ongoing conversation about the role of design and it’s influence on community is an exciting extension from my academic life at NCSU. It is a reflection of my 5-10 year plan to establish and interdisciplinary practice with Weiss and other practicing designers & non-designers. (I think I have already met a sociologist and seasoned project manager.)

As I have been moving closer and closer to my return to NC, Weiss and I have begun sharing stories about work. Reflecting on these conversations as well as my mid-reviews, I am left with a few main points to provide guidance for next steps:

+ Introducing qualitative aspects to the everyday calendar: The universal digital calendar has a quantitative organization of time which helps keep track of time commitments according to allocation of time. How might I develop an addition to this calendar that is driven by a qualitative organization of values in order to influence time commitments?

+ Define a specific audience/circumstance: The feedback in mid-term reviews was to choose a specific audience that this tool would be designed for. Right now I had defined my audience as a person who experiences work-nonwork conflict. Another suggestion I had from professor Amber Howard was to focus my design on an emotional circumstance, such as gratification or  playfulness.

+ Existing Models: I would like to find models which have been developed to help the negotiation of values and time commitments. Could a model which helps us think about broader goals and values influence the way we perceive and plan our daily activities?