Today, I was hard at work in the ‘fish bowl’ or white board room in the new Design Studio. I had laid out about 7 papers, 2 books, and my laptop as resources. I quickly went through my cliff notes from all the papers I had before me to refresh my mind. After getting situated I started scrawling on the white boards. I wrote and I wrote and I wrote. I wrote around the entire room. Every surface has some sort of writing upon it. I was mentally empty, but not ‘drained’.

After a quick break, I came back in an effort to “climate control” my brainstorm session (Bardzell, 2010). I took up some markers and started jotting down some quesitons. I started making connections between readings. Circling here, arrows everywhere, doodles strewn acorss the walls. I was feeling good and making some awesome connections, when I had a sudden insight, which I quicky and sloppy wrote on the wall. I was looking to form a connection between formal elements of a design (the critique feature on Deviant Art) and the experience of leaving a critique. I could ‘see’ how it all fit in my mind, but I couldn’t really explain it.

I had been in this spot before with my post on Flickr. But this time was different. After my last post, I went and talked with Jeff. We spoke of how I could use some theories that we had been learning to bridge this gap between formal elements and experience. But, I had no real idea how to do this. Today, I might have made the leap.

Here is the insight I had. Bell talks about formal (intrinsic elements) but leaves out social influences. Hebdige and Polhemus bridge formal elements to style which is hard to take directly to interaction design. Then Lowgren takes style to Interaction (styles) with Use Qualities (the piece I was missing before). Finally Dewey and Baktin can bridge interaction to experience.

In a more simple form, it looks like this:

I’m wondering what other people think. Does this make sense to you? Does it seem like a good direction in which to head? I think that most of my argument relies on this bridging, so commentary would help a lot. Thanks! Also, to add more context, if needed, here is my pre-writing work. HillJohnWayne_pre-writing.

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