Author: Cayla Key

From Design to Advocacy: Learning to Do More

For many of us home is where the most personal and precious everyday activities take place. We tuck our kids into bed there, we relax after a long day in our favorite chair there, we trim our toenails there. As more and more of the objects in our homes become connected to the internet, and therefore more of the internet becomes embodied in the material makeup of our homes it is important to understand how internet connectivity changes our relationships to everyday objects and activities in our homes.

This is the basic question I came to OpenDoTT with. My way of framing this research topic is through design and design research, as is my training and passion. That same background taught me to use critical design to open up conversations on important issues, to use speculative design to imagine preferable alternatives, design ethics to consider issues of diversity, inclusion, and access, and design research to explore theoretical aspects of everyday life. However rigorous that pedagogy, focusing on technological interactions without also understanding, designing, and fighting for how these relationships fold and re-fold into the fabric of larger assemblages and sociotechnical landscapes left me asking: how in the world do we actually make these ideas a reality today, not just in some utopian future?

Read more