Workshop: Human-Centeredness as a Fab Lab Value
Johanna Okerlund, David Wilson
Learning to embrace digital fabrication as a social revolution as much as a technological one, we discuss embedding HCI and human-centeredness as values into everyday Fab Lab practice.
As Fab Labs become increasingly ubiquitous, it is important to consider their impact. In their book Designing Reality, the Gershenfelds urge us to not only celebrate fabrication as the next digital revolution, but also realize that we need to shape the accompanying social revolution. Towards that agenda, we consider a proactive stance at a local level that consists of embracing human-centeredness as a primary digital fabrication value and shifting the focus of maker practices from technical to sociotechnical. Human-Computer Interaction and Human-Centered Design consist of methodologies and mindsets that are driven by a relentless desire to understand the deep and nuanced experiences of humans interacting with artifacts, systems, and other humans nested in social and political ecologies. In this working group, we will discuss opportunities and challenges for bringing HCI and human-centeredness to Fab Labs, discuss this value in relation to Designing Reality’s call to drive a social revolution, and brainstorm ideas for development and research.