Temporary Expert – Update as of November 6

I did material research, and need to speak with people at ITP who have made their own bio-friendly materials. I’m open to suggestions.

I also contacted the U.N.’s teams that manage campaigns around the Sustainable Development Goals through several channels.

I’ve been feeling under the weather for almost an entire week, so I have loose ideas of an audience and poster.

I’m thinking the audience could be found at a public library. I’m looking to meet people who are already open to ideas, and with just a little push, they might think differently because of my project, which afterwards may lead to different actions. It seems I can find these people at a library?? I’ve also found success there already.

As for a poster, if I had lots of time, I could make a set out of bioplastics. I wonder how plant dye behaves as ink on bioplastic? Beyond the materiality, the message needs to communicate that the changes we need to make in 12 years are sobering but actually exciting.

Temporary Expert – Update as of Oct 30

As you read below, you can click links to read my in-depth notes in my website of sorts in google drive.

This last week was very busy doing the seven day practice. It is a very effective strategy. I see it almost like performing lab experiments, with the ability to control for different aspects or introduce new variables as I went.

Arthava and Beverly building a system to capture energy from tides in the Rockaways. Energy would be plugged into the grid for homeowners to use.

My seven day practice involved facilitating interactions with one person or people in pairs. I now can see I moved from concept testing to prototype testing. This may have led to two possible outputs for my project:  a workshop template and an installation.

For concept testing, I showed people the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals with a different physical or visual analogy each time.  I was testing how people responded to the goals, and if introducing a different analogy each time changed how they make decisions in my workshop activities. These felt like workshops that could possibly go fit into a classroom setting.

For prototype testing, I moved to more of an installation setting where people interact with what I’ve built but I am not necessarily there for every moment. I hope to do more of these. I’m trying to find out how people respond when I put my concepts into different forms, materials and epistemologies. This type of approach feels more like a pop-up installation or a more artistic installation at a UN event or local community affected by climate change.

Aletha interacting with a prototype that asks people to allocate energy between now and future generations.

When it came to user testing, I found myself unable to be so extroverted so many days in a row.  On the day I didn’t have a new visual analogies to test, I found a convenient excuse to skip testing with other people. This made me feel a bit bad but I did do a lot of research, which paid off with new visual or physical metaphors to pursue.

In response to my natural inclinations during Topic #1, I tried to put more effort into testing materials and visual analogies this week. In the end, I probably did more visual analogy and concept testing. But in my mind, this is the best order to go in? Once I settle on the concepts and visual analogies that people respond to, I can test different materials and epistemologies. This is me possibly putting of materials again, though.

I also filled out milestones and completed a significant chunk of research, including reading most of the relevant parts of the UN’s IPCC’s report and a bunch of other interesting articles. I followed up with scientists who worked on the UN climate change report and live in the US. I have a meeting with someone who worked on a new climate change installation at the American Museum of Natural History.

Live Web – Protest App Midterm Project (Update)

I plan to continue working on this project idea of a Protest App. I worked slowly but surely on building the socket.io server and access to the peer.js server, and learned a lot doing so.

You can visit these pages to get the gist of my project here.

Speak – the page the event speaker visits.

Listen  – the page that attendees visit.

I mentioned in class I may not have set up my peer.js server correctly, but I think I did? The error I’m getting is below. I’ll be coming to office hours with Shawn and Alejandro.


Temporary Expert – Topic #2 Blog Links and Updates

As for updates, you can read about…

  • How I’ve put all of my blog posts in online documents here. I find it a lot easier to manage this than my blog. Plus I can use the doc’s comments feature to write down next steps or unanswered questions.
  • Who I’ve asked for informational interviews.
  • My very full are.na mood board for content research.
  • My empty are.na mood board for materials research. I will work on this. But at least I have these two separate tracks set up.
  • My research notes. I reread Lakoff’s Metaphors We Live By and got myself oriented within the IPCC report.

I still need to do these things, but really want to…

  • Set my milestones.
  • Watch Donella Meadows video.
  • Make a crazy sketch.
  • Audio record a two-minute interview with a working participant / non-climate change expert and write two sentences on how what they said could affect/impact your topic, and to post both interview and your response.
  • Did I already did this part here, or this is something different?: State your intent, craft a question.

You can also click around my progress using this link or by clicking on the image below.

Computational Narratives – Evolutionary Journal

I decided to continue with my evolutionary tree idea from earlier in the semester. The concept is that the reader starts as one sea creature, and becomes others by traveling the evolutionary tree’s branches.

I enjoyed getting to spend more time learning about interesting animals, and reminding myself of the major branches of evolution.

You can see my prototype here. This time I was able to add a sense of discourse, or genre, to hold the piece together. For this iteration, I employed the concept of a journal. The narrator is writing entries in their journal as they time travel.

(I don’t like how this looks, but it gets the point across.)



I was also able to flesh out the branching steps more completely. In talking with Allison, my first draft seemed limited by only allowing the reader to go backwards in the evolutionary tree. I decided to let the reader go backwards and forwards.

I did have challenges with a few stretch goals I had for myself. Most disappointing was not being able to debug properly. I found Twine to be intuitive most of the time, but quite unintuitive when I was trying to do something less conventional. I had wanted to create a way for the reader to be given a list of all the animals they transformed into. Perhaps these could become stickers? Or a nice flyer? After meeting with Allison, I had an idea of how to use Sugarcube and Twine to modify plain javascript to create a global variable.  I wasn’t able to debug or finish the code. As for the CSS, I’m pretty sure the CSS code is entered properly but it’s not displaying well. I’m happy to fix these two things.

All in all though, I think the Twine format affords an interaction that matches the form of an evolutionary tree. I think with enough styling and design, a piece like this might be able to stand on its own. There’s an educational component that could be very strong in a museum. Or there could be a more philosophical approach to existence. Either could be accomplished with different tones, design systems, and imagery.