I’m in a Glass Cage of Emotion!!

I am currently sitting in what remains of my bedroom after I tore through it with tornado-like force. You see, I have, for reasons unknown, purposely shot myself in the foot by being accepted into the work-in-progress poster session at CHI 2010, and volunteering to be the first of my cohort to present my masters thesis.

Said presentation will occur the Tuesday after CHI. I will be in another city for the entire week leading up to my masters thesis presentation. Truly, this seemed like such a good idea at the time.

Anyway, I’ve been going back through the existing artifact analysis posts to strengthen the cultural analysis sections, by far my weakest portion of the analysis. I know I’ve done a great deal more, and I’d love to go into greater detail, but I need to finish packing. Here comes the list of amazing accomplishments from the last day or so. (I say it this way to psych myself up for the strenuous week that awaits me.)

  • Met with Jeff Bardzell and got a crash course reminder about cultural analysis in terms of phenomenology, intertextuality, and other many-syllabled words. Inspiring and daunting.
  • Gave myself a  crash course in current participatory design theory, practices, and methods by reading close to fifteen papers last night.
  • These papers made me realize my user-maker is akin to the co-designer, and that my tentative theory, contributive design is akin to meta-design, design-for-design, design-after-design, and/or design-by-use.
  • Met with Eli Blevis, who gave me more papers to read about bricoleurs in human computer interaction design, which he seems to think is a better term for my user-maker.
  • Let’s face it, I hate the term user, and would like to remove it from the title of my thesis, if possible.
  • Eli encouraged this, suggested participant-maker, but I feel this doesn’t properly describe the re-situation of the traditional designer and user, either.
  • Bought a new sketchbook because I managed to go through mine in less than an academic year. I wrote on both sides of the paper, too. Fairly impressed with myself.
  • Had a heck of a time printing my work-in-progress poster because the campus plotter printers were down. Thank you, Indiana University, I had to spend $64 for a poster at Staples that could have cost me $10 if you’d kept your equipment in working condition.
  • Speaking of posters, Eli told me I should think diagrammatically for my thesis poster because I’m stating X is the traditional way of doing things, Y is how things currently are, and Z is where interaction designers should aspire to reach.
  • Went to bed at 5 AM last night working on my thesis, woke at 10 AM to start my crazy list of errands before going to CHI, and haven’t stopped since.
  • This blog post is my mind dump so when I do manage to go to bed, I’ll be serene enough for slumber.
  • Made an awesome mix CD for the car ride to Atlanta.
  • Bundled up all my pertinent thesis materials so I can camp out at the hotel when I’m not at the CHI lecture sessions.
  • I’m literally not bringing as many clothes so I can pack more papers. Thank you, grad school.
  • Found an exemplar for the production quality version of my thesis. I plan to print it through Blurb, and make it available for purchase for family, friends, and Steampunks who suggested I do so.
  • Sketched some initial poster designs. Feel like if I get the poster down, then I can tackle the presentation, and then the paper.

Basically, I’m seeing…

Poster : Core.                     
                Presentation : Argument.
                                           Paper : Discourse.

In the meantime, I’m gonna finish packing and then maybe do another affinity diagram of the insightful quotes from my interviews. Then more sketching of the summary diagram, which will make up the poster.

Cheers, berserker!Binaebi

5 thoughts on “I’m in a Glass Cage of Emotion!!

  1. I hope you have a great time in Atlanta and manage to enjoy yourself some while you learn and do awesome stuff.

    Keep chuggin’ – I know you will do an awesome job!

    Safe travels!

    ❤ allison


    1. Thank you! I’m currently setting up capstone central in the hotel room. I’ve taken down paintings and taped up my gargantuan affinity diagram of quotes from papers to the walls. If I’m to enjoy myself, however, I’ll have to invest in a huge bag of Claratin, because man, I was dying last night with the pollen. I even broke out into hives before I managed to get some Benadryl! Crazy stuff.


  2. It’s always interesting to read your post. I wish you success with your presentation and your write up. Imagine how much fun you would have with a dissertation :-)…


    1. Thank you! I am going to get a PhD someday, I think; this project has made me super happy with research. I need to get some industry experience, though.

      If you’re interested in attending my presentation, it will be April 20th at 5 PM. Informatics West room 107.


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