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This tag is associated with 17 posts

The Internet as research tool

Good research draws on evidence — at the very least a body of literature that supports the answer to a research question. Can you draw on the Internet for evidence? As well as a body of literature most researchers would admit as evidence the results of experiments, observations, surveys, interviews, and questionnaires. In architecture, the arts and some other fields (engineering, … Continue reading

Against empathy

“The term ’empathy,’ has provided a guiding thread for a whole range of fundamentally mistaken theories concerning man’s relationship to other human beings and to other beings in general, theories that we are only gradually beginning to overcome today” (203). That’s a quote from Martin Heidegger’s book of 1929-30 based on a lecture series bearing the … Continue reading

Digital mood modifiers

Apparently botox helps you feel better. I’m researching mood, so I’ve skimmed through a recent book called The Face of Emotion: How Botox Affects Our Moods and Relationships, in which the author says, “If you smile broadly, at that moment you will feel happier. You need your smile to help you ‘feel’ the emotion.” Conversely, frowning … Continue reading

Your inner child

Older people like to watch children’s television, according to the TV licensing study that came out this week: “Older people found the most enjoyment in children’s television, with 80% of respondents aged 65 and above agreeing children’s shows make them happy.” It’s surprising that older people watch children’s TV, but so is the idea of using happiness as … Continue reading

Ambient wit

Film, music and game sales from downloads reached £1bn in 2012 according to a BBC report. Travellers waiting patiently in airport lounges and couples and groups sitting in dulled silence access online news reports. They also stream, download and play movies, tv programmes, and other information content and entertainment on their smartphones, tablets and laptops … Continue reading

Ambience on demand

The way we watch television, listen to the radio and generally consume media has changed radically since the advent of the Internet and digital broadcasting. We now have user-generated online video (eg YouTube and Vimeo), broadcast and online television services (Sky, Tivo) that enable you to view movies and programmes on demand and on different … Continue reading

Haunted by media

This is Dying Matters Awareness Week in the UK. We are a “death denying” society inept at dealing with bereavement, planning for the end of life, and making arrangements for after we are gone. On the other hand, thanks to television, films, video games and the Internet, we confront our mortality every waking moment of … Continue reading

What are audiences for?

Publishers, games companies, broadcasters, performers and artists need audiences. Audiences as consumers function to provide a direct revenue stream: the bigger the audience the greater the income. In the publishing and the academic arena large audiences (big classes, lots of readers, many citations) equate to recognition, esteem, success, and high “impact” in some measure. Audiences feature in … Continue reading

Reality re-structured

Mass media entertainment gives the word “reality” a real hammering. Hammering provides a useful metaphor. One of the ways the empirically minded commonly assert the incontrovertible reality of the world is to thump on something solid. Catching up with just 15 minutes of the BAFTA winning “structured reality” tv show The Only Way is Essex … Continue reading

I am Spartacus

The perennial tussle between the right to free speech and the right to privacy has a spatial dimension of relevance to any designer. Architects, geographers and planners are acutely aware of the relationships between public and private spaces. Free speech roughly equates to the right of access to a place (eg a city square, the … Continue reading

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