Permeability, Productivity & Playfulness
Digital yet Tangible
Connected yet Visible
Smart yet Simple

This class had a focus on tangibility and physical design of interfaces. The concepts
could be provocative and unconventional but should try to follow some simple constraints.

1. The outcome is a standalone product that works by itself or plugs into something else i.e is not an installation or something that requires infrastructure change.

2. Is situated in the home i.e not outdoors or on the move.

3. Is physical in nature and not a totally virtual solution

4. Elements of a service backbone but the service is not the focus. Thus the product/service ecosystem is relevant but the final prototype needs to demonstrate capabilities in design and execution of a good tangible interface.

5. Elements of both input and output (display & control) i.e is not a one way interface.

Learning Expectations
Students were expected to learn how to appreciate good product design, create novel interfaces and apply concepts to everyday life in a meaningful way. We urged students to think unconventionally i.e Not buttons and knobs but at the same time remain in the realm of pragmatic and evocative products.

Solutions required the use of physical form to mediate and facilitate interaction and students were expected to develop their own signature technique around the use of an elegant form based language and enjoyable tangible experience – concluding in a well‐refined balance between usability and desirability.

In Addition:
– Deep understanding of tangibility and interaction
– Provocative play/interpretation of metaphors and mental models
– Strong and unique concept creation and development
– Rapid and iterative prototyping in foam, card, wood, metal, plastic etc.
– Ability in creating working electronic prototypes with embed software.


Students worked in teams of 2 people throughout the 4‐week course. It was important that teams were made up of people with complimentary skills. For example, people with strong programming and/or electronics skills were balanced with those equally strong in design and the production of physical artifacts in the workshop.