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Vision on the move:technologies for the footloose

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  • Design
  • Philosophy


Jobs don9t always get done in the ofû ce. Getting up to speed in a taxi (Fig. 1) is not unusual for many professionals. They are nomads even though their work is highly information intensive, requiring people to carry their work materials around with them. Creative work, central to many professions in aesthetic design and architecture, is a particular case in point. Close observation of the how, why and where of creative work can be an inspirational resource for a parallel group of designers - those concerned with the creation of future technologies. Drawing on an ethnographic study of landscape architects we - an interdisciplinary team of work analysts, practitioners, and system designers1 - pres- ent a scenario of how we are trying to support cre- ative work on the move. Vision on the move Imagination seems footloose - not only conceptually but also geographically. Ideas might surface any- where, and it is not difû cult to capture them. A notebook, even a napkin will do. Yet, at the same time, the ability to envision new forms of material culture can be deeply dependent on a sense of place and context. Where and how might people use a new product? How will they inhabit a new building or public space? Should your design û t smoothly into its surroundings or attract attention by standing out? Questions like these permeate the whole of the design process, from initial concept design to deci- sions on details later on. They often surface in situ - as part of a planned excursion or as a result of being in a relevant place by happenstance. But they also require the designer to 8bring a place home9, to create a sense of place in the studio workplace and share it with colleagues. Out on site, landscape architects generate and record information (Fig. 2), they take sets of documents and 1 WorkSPACE (Distributed Work support through component based SPAtial Computing Environments) IST-2000-25290. Vision on the move: Technologies

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