Category archives: Design Theory

Discussions of Design Epistemology or more generally thoughts about design.

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Why you can't just flutter the eyelashes anymore (Ruminations on a discussion at PyGTA...)

We had rather an involved discussion at the PyGTA meeting on Tuesday. By way of background, a number of the Python programmers in Toronto are working on a project called the "Art Interface Device", which is, in essence an attempt to create a standardized framework for animatronic artwork. At the moment, the system works at ...

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Where are the radical ideas in computer science? (Radical is not adding functional elements to Python, for instance...)

Here, for instance, is a radical (but not particularly new) idea in computer language design:

The computer records all interactions with the programmer and shares it's understandings of meanings and implications of any given set of events/contexts with all other computers in the system.

With every spare bit of processing and communications power, the computer ...

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You assume those you like are like you (And, of course, that they like you)

When we identify with something or someone, we tend to ascribe to it the values that we ourselves hold as important. I'm realising that this is a serious impediment to properly understanding your world (though it does make for more harmonious relationships).

Over the last couple of months I've come to realise that there are ...

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A Safe Place to Explore Ideas (Playfulness in design as a mechanism to allow exploration of difficult topics)

Apropos to the question of play in design, particularly the effect described in my thesis of providing a safe environment for exploring ideas:

Arlo and Janis: Can I have a kiss?

What you see here is a fairly deep topic; getting caught up in trivialities and as a result losing the chance to demonstrate affection. It's something that's painful for many people, yet ...

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Perception is mostly expectation (Recent thoughts on constructing perceiving machines...)

Our perceptual systems operate in such a way that we construct an internal model of our environment then react when the world around us differs from that model. In effect, we predict or "render" the world as we expect it to be and see if the world matches that prediction. We give lots of extra ...

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