The cultural significance of Informatics is that it provides new forms of digital embodiment which lead to evolution of practices and meaning.
Engagement of Informatics with Design is a key approach to explore this relationship between technology and culture. This talk outlines how such an approach was developed over an extended period of engagement with the Arts and Humanities and Practitioners in the Digital Creative Industries.
Two projects in particular are used to illustrate this process Tacitus and Spellbinder.
Tacitus was a major AHRC/EPSRC project which explored tacit knowledge in designers and makers and how this could be support by computer design systems.
A novel haptic design system was developed which demonstrated significant improvements in ease of use.
Spellbinder was a new form of mobile application based on image matching using camera phones. Funded by the “Designing for the 21st Century” AHRC/EPSRC initiative we explored the potential of this new medium through an iterative series of workshops, intense design interventions and reflection which we termed Research by Design.