Falmouth University Research Repository (FURR)

    What’s the point of an MA in design anyway?

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    An opinion piece on the merits of undertaking a Master's degree in design, centring on the value of developing critical thinking as a means of uncovering the 'hidden curriculum' of previous decades of schooling

    An Invisible Gorilla: Is It a Matter of Focus of Attention?

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    How to evaluate users’ attention level in a video task is a challenge. One of the conventional methods is to link users’ focus of attention to their performance under-taken in a video. However, this is not always true in a video environment, as users’ poor performance may be resulted from some other reasons rather than a lack of focus of attention. In this article, we demonstrated our assumption by using an Electroen-cephalography (EEG) sensor, which measured the users’ attention level in a video task. Our results showed one case that some of the users with a poor performance in the video task had the same level of attention compared to those users with a good performance. In particular, an interference object in the video, aimed for distracting the users’ attention, had no impact on some of the users’ focus when they were al-ready involved in the video task


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    This article acknowledges the shifting landscapes of news production and consumption in the digital era and forms part of ongoing research into online narratives and media-based storytelling. In June 2008 the search term ‘‘Madeleine McCann’’ generated around 3700 videos on YouTube, attracting over seven million text responses. This research project used generic analysis to allocate videos to categories according to their content. Using critical discourse analysis, the nature of the comments posted in response to the videos was then assessed. Both methods were deployed to explore three broad research questions. First, what kind of content were people uploading to YouTube in response to the case? Second, where did YouTube users position themselves in relation to the dominant discourses of the news media in this case? Third, previous work demonstrates evidence of ‘‘collective expressiveness, emotionality, and identity’’ (Greer, 2004) in virtual communities structured around cases of child murder in the United Kingdom: to what extent were these characteristics of imagined community evident in responses to videos? Results demonstrate that YouTube provides a forum for a broad range of responses to the case, both accommodating and expanding on dominant mainstream discourses. Evidence of distinct imagined communities forming around particular responses to the case demonstrate nuanced and complex patterns of responses to mediated crime through YouTube, as technology erodes the traditional boundaries between producers and consumers of crime news. The methodology for this paper offers a novel approach to categorizing user generated responses to mainstream crime stories on YouTube through a carefully structured framework of video genre analysis read against content analysis of text comments. This approach has been adopted as the methodological framework for a chapter by Professor Bob Franklin exploring YouTube responses to the ‘Baby P’ case in forthcoming collection ‘Thatcher’s Grandchildren’, currently in publication

    Collaboration and Originality

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    Commissioned as part of the sculptural project Sculptomatic, the essay tries to dismantle what may seem at first glance to be a tension or opposition between the two terms of the title. It sketches a constant exchange of information, a constant shifting of the forms and roles of maker, medium and “product” as the continuous, or background process within which genuinely new things and ideas arise. Understood in this way, “collaboration” no longer appears to be an exception, but rather forms the essential substrate, the foundation for the new. The book’s publication coincided with an exhibition by the established collaborative team of Dunhill and O’Brien. The exhibition opened at The James Hockey Gallery in Farnham and then travelled to the Kunstvereniging Diepenheim, Holland

    Rewind-Play-Fast Forward

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    This book-chapter examines the works of Ainsley Hillard (UK), Christy Matson (USA), Jane Harris (UK), Barbara Layne (Canada), Janis Jefferies (UK) and Nancy Tilbury (UK) as they as framed by future-facing paradigms of textiles and technologies seeking to incorporate sound and interaction into otherwise visual registers. The writing is subdivided into sections on ephemerality, temporality, transitoriness and fast-forwarding to reflect the future-oriented aesthetic. This book accompanied an exhibition of the same name that I curated at Mykolas Žilinskas Art Gallery, Kaunas, Lithuania (the city’s main gallery). This exhibition comprised five installed works to showcase audio/visual textiles which use new materials and technologies

    TaleEnders and the Heritage of Welsh Cricket

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    This project between Glamorgan Cricket and the University of Glamorgan seeks to explore the use of storytelling and technology to populate the new Museum of Welsh Cricket at Sophia Gardens as part of the current £9.6 million redevelopment in advance of hosting an Ashes Tests in 2009. There are 264 cricket clubs, affiliated to the Cricket Board of Wales – the arm of Glamorgan Cricket which oversees the recreational side of the game – many of which have long and diverse histories. This rich heritage lends itself to a major narrative research project to gather stories from players, support staff and spectators from these clubs which can then populate part of the museum. Glamorgan Cricket and their development partners (e.g. CC4 – Cardiff http://www.cc4web.tv/about.html) are keen to explore the use of digital and mobile technologies to deliver the stories to visitors to both the Museum and to the increased programme of matches that are anticipated following the redevelopment and to explore digital storytelling as a way of creating high-quality authentic content. The ground development includes the installation of a large digital screen/scoreboard which might also broadcast digital stories during intervals and rain breaks. This would be an innovative use of the available technology and would place Sophia Gardens as a leader in developing an enhanced visitor experience. The material gathered would also have potential benefit for Glamorgan Cricket, as it develops a range of educational products for use through its recently-appointed Cricket in the Community Officer

    The CP-QAE-I: A Video Dataset for Exploring the Effects of Personality and Culture on Perceived Quality and Affect in Multimedia

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    Perception of quality and affect are subjective, driven by a complex interplay between system and human factors. Is it, however, possible to model these factors to predict subjective perception? To pursue this question, broader collaboration is needed to sample all aspects of personality, culture, and other human factors. Thus, an appropriate dataset is needed to integrate such efforts. Here, the CP-QAE-I is proposed. This is a video dataset containing 144 video sequences based on 12 short movie clips. These vary by: frame rate; frame dimension; bit-rate; and affect. An evaluation by 76 participants drawn from the United Kingdom, Singapore, India, and China suggests adequate distinction between the video sequences in terms of perceived quality as well as positive and negative affect. Nationality also emerged as a significant predictor, supporting the rationale for further study. By sharing the dataset, this paper aims to promote work modeling human factors in multimedia perception

    Craft and Technology from a Pragmatic Perspective

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    This peer reviewed paper was presented within the ‘Craft and Technology’ strand of this international conference. This paper seeks to contextualise work by craftspeople and designer makers who use digital technologies by discussing ways in which technology can be defined and the theoretical frameworks within which these definitions sit. The paper highlights some of the ways in which technology and technological mediation is commonly discussed and relates these views to three broad theoretical characterisations of technology. This includes; a 'conservative' characterisation based on rigidly quantifiable aspects of technology and draws on the tradition of logical positivism, a 'critical' characterisation referencing the work of Martin Heidegger and Tony Fry, and a ‘pragmatic’ characterisation based, to some degree, on the work of John Dewey. The paper argues that the pragmatic characterisation is the most appropriate for discussing technology’s employment within craft practices, and through employing this characterisation a new perspective on the relationship between craft practices and digital technologies can be gained. This includes a recognition of the impact technological mediation has on both the way you engage with the world and your perception of it (i.e. technologies are more than functional tools). In addition, through highlighting the pragmatic belief that theory and practice are bound together in the process of active inquiry, this paper provides a new argument for the worth of holistic activities such as craft

    An Essay Concerning the Architecture of Conversation

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    An edited and designed article adapted from a series of informal meetings, emails, notes and a public conversation held between artist Lizzie Ridout and artist/writer/curator Maria Christoforidou. These formed part of Lizzie Ridout's exhibition 'Ways to Talk & Yet Say Nothing, or Ways to Not Talk & Yet Say Everything', bringing together a body of printed works, drawings and objects. Shown at Plymouth University in 2012, this exhibition coincided with the completion of a publication also called 'Ways to Talk & Yet Say Nothing, or Ways to Not Talk & Yet Say Everything'. The publication is the result of a collaboration with Women's Studio Workshop, Rosendale, NY, USA

    Exhibition catalogue: 'Something Possible Everywhere: Pier 34, NYC 1983-84'

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    'Something Possible Everywhere: Pier 34, NYC 1983-84' Exhibition at 205 Hudson Street Gallery in New York, 30 September to 20 November 201
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