Invited Talk: Virtual Possessions, Value Construction, and Opportunities for Cloud Computing

Jodi Forlizzi, Associate Professor of Design and Human-Computer Interation at Carnegie Mellon University

Friday, April 19th 2013, 2:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.

Brickyard Artisan Court BYAC 190

Virtual Possessions, Value Construction, and Opportunities for Cloud Computing


Abstract: People are  increasingly acquiring large collections of virtual things. These include both things that are losing their material form, such as books, music, and photos, and things that have never had a lasting material form, such as email and SMS archives, and behavioral logs from services like MapMyRun. In our research we have investigated how teens and young adults make sense of and construct value with their virtual possession. Using a process of field work, speed dating, and technology probes, this project employs a theoretical framing from material possession attachment and material practices to understand how changes to the form and behavior of people’s virtual possessions can influence their perception of value for their growing collections. In this talk we will share findings from this research and discuss how these point to several new opportunities for cloud computing.


Bio:  Jodi Forlizzi is an Associate Professor of Design and Human-Computer Interaction at Carnegie Mellon University, in Pittsburgh, PA. She also leads the Human-Systems Interaction Group of the Quality of Life Technology Center, a joint NSF Engineering Research Center with the University of Pittsburgh. Jodi is an interaction designer who examines theories of experience, emotion, and social product use as they relate to interaction design. Other research and practice centers on notification systems ranging from peripheral displays to embodied robots, with a special focus on the social behavior evoked by these systems. One recent system is Snackbot, a robot that delivers snacks and encourages people to make healthy choices. Jodi was trained as an illustrator at Philadelphia College of Arts, and as an interaction designer at the School of Design, Carnegie Mellon University. She holds a self-defined Ph.D. in Design in HCI from Carnegie Mellon University. Prior to joining the faculty, Jodi was an Innovator and Project Manager at E-Lab, LLC.