Thesis Final Deliverables

Class Activities

Post-It Ideation

Precedent Mapping Activity

Methodology Workshop

Production Schedule

Prototype Presentations


Protoype02 & DecipheringDinner Book File

Protoype3- Midterm



Final Paper







Writing & Research Presentations









Elevator Pitch

WR_Elevator Pitch


DEC 11: Final Presentation

The semester seems like it flew by and final presentations were this past week. I presented my final idea of my thesis containing parts of my heritage. My proposal to carry out the placements and the postcards are part of the exploration I want to do when I go home during the break. Here are my presentations slides. Sorry there is no dubbed audio of what I actually said to go along with it, but I you’ll get the idea.

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Back to Business

After a Thanksgiving Break hiatus, it’s time to think Thesis again through this blog. I wasn’t posting during the break, but today is a new day.

Here is the presentation I gave today. My main goal with this round of “prototyping” was to focus in on the form and also to develop my concept.

We had formal critiques today and Ed Keller, came to be a guest crit. I thought his feedback was extremely helpful since he provided me with a lot of film references that follow the same themes of my thesis–something I never got before. (notes below copied from Katherine’s on-the-spot transcriptions)

  • BOOK: dyosteyevsky, brothers karamazov, about complex family relations, kind
    of twisted, but remarkable
  • film references re: absent parent, zyvinskev, “the return” boys living
    with mother and absent father shows up
  • robert lepage, “the confessional” about a series of complex family
    relationships, missing family members. many scenes take place in
    family house, and is remembering scenes from his own life an family
  • he filmmaking techniques, of
    space, and how you use it can relate to your work. furniture design if
    it is good has a lot of detail that communicates. relates story from
    youth and the family table he still has in his home – has an
    opportunity to look at details, thickness, temperature of material,
    finish of material, etc.
  • 1950s furniture design raymond lowry (?)
  • robert smithson in the 1960s. happenings, dinner parties for all who
    would come. can look at it as an interesting example, related example.
  • sophie calle – folds personal life into work. the way she weaves
    personal narrative into work – become autobiographical, but also
    destabilizes the relationship to this work – how do you get close to
    the work when she has objectively catalogues the experience.
  • “all about my mother” – pedro almovodar – about lost
    parents and lost children.
  • what constitutes the interface – should
    definitely see the films they are dealing with the exact interests you
    are exploring.
  • should not have just two sketch models – should have 50. can come up
    with examples – design drawing, notebook, journal. – need to do more
    iteration than just 3-4.





Prototype 1: A “new” dinner?

Family dinner becomes identified by certain criteria that becomes universal across families around the world. Dinner usually happens around a table, with other members with place settings and a good meal. A place setting is a universal symbol for eating, and a formal recollection to the dinner table.

This prototype offers a question to what becomes acceptable at the dinner table. We grew up learning that it was rude to talk on the phone, but now with smart phones embedded into our daily activities and lives, how does that change our behavior? Is a cellphone at the table more acceptable now than before, or does it raise the question  “is this wrong?’

Creating this place mat and presenting it to a few viewers I was able to get feedback on their personal reactions and feelings of seeing the mobile phone as a part of the dinner table. No longer is it just about the plate, knife, fork, and spoon, but also the additional digital element.

Interestingly, reactions ranged from “this is okay” to “this is seems so wrong” illustrating the changing acceptance by our generation. I gathered some feedback through sending photos via e-mail or placing this in front of people. It is interesting to see how the formal place mat has been “updated” to blend with society today. What is funny is that a major comment was “this would never happen with my parents” but it would be okay with friends. Although, just because your friends are young, it doesn’t mean this is any better, does it? Are we turning into a society that doesn’t mind disruption by cellphones? What would our ancestors think about that? How is this a commentary of how technology and digital devices affect our physical space?

Attached is my presentation and here is a link to my prototype brief.

Precedent: It’s a Book by Lane Smith

Books are universal. Books are the one thing that won’t fail us unexpectedly like a hard drive crash. Once printed a book holds a story forever.  As I continued to read “Realspace” and I came across the following quotes that I agree with:

Books, of course, cannot go very far without hands to turn their pages and eyes awake enough to read them. And we need to keep its pages close to our face. But books have the advantage of being readable anywhere there is light.

No current electronic communication device has the book’s–especially the paperback’s– almost effortless mobility, requiring no preparation (other than being literate and having the book at hand) to receive its information.

These quotes also sparked a memory of a book my mom showed me last summer. It was a good book  titled “It’s a Book” by Lane Smith. The short video below describes the frustration between one character that wants more from the book. The following video shows that children may never look at books the same way. The baby, only one and already programmed to think of every surface as interactive, like an iPad shows how the technology we are so used to may cause new problems while solving old ones.

Past Thesis Precedents

This project is similar to the idea from my Mini-Thesis that was about solitary dining using the TV Dinner experience.  My project focused on the cultural learning that may come from such experience, embracing the idea of eating alone. However, this project by Rita Saad contrasts by providing women with a toolkit to help them deal with the awkwardness that dining in a solitary situation. 

ZombieComp may not look like a related project, but after reading more through Kellyn’s paper I found similarities in the way she was bringing up cultural references to the Zombies. My cultural references may be a little different but she does look back using history to formulate her overall thesis idea.

I really enjoy the idea of “gifting” that Lara brings up with her thesis project.  The mobile app stems from the basic idea of creating a mixtape for someone and giving it to a friend—a tradition that has been lost over the years because casette tapes have been replaced with mp3’s. She uses technology in a way that brings gift-exchange back to life in the present day. The experience may be a little different, but the concept is closely related to a memory that Lara cherished as a child. Katherine showed me this project done by Adam Scher also relating to memory and past experiences. The project is a suite of little mini projects that all revolve around the same idea. Adam brings up his past experiences and relives certain memories brining the idea that we lose memories over time. Adams project may be related to what I am working on since many of my personal experiences and ideas are influenced by my past memories, good and bad.