While much work is underway within the context of posthuman design, this research is often described from a dominantly human perspective. It rarely accounts for the creative capacities of nonhumans in design, such as materials, tools, and software. There is a need to further engage with posthuman theories conceptually, materially, and methodologically. We approach this challenge through Ron Wakkary's concept of repertoires: actions the human designer can take to increase participation of nonhumans in design research practice. This paper reports on potential repertoires' development by exploring three approaches from outside of HCI: describing the landscape, noticing, and translations. We use these methods to account for weaving events that the first author was engaged in. Through critical reflection of these accounts, we contribute three repertoires and an example of applying the theoretical framework of Designing Things.
Flavobacteria, which can be found in marine environments, are able to grow in highly organized colonies producing vivid iridescent colorations. While much is known about the biology of these organisms, their design potential as responsive media in user interfaces
has not been explored. Our paper aims at bridging this gap by providing insights into the type, degree, and duration of change in Flavobacteria’s expression, i.e., their living aesthetics. We present a tool to capture and characterize these changes concerning
form, texture and iridescent color. To support the long-term study of their living aesthetics, we designed Flavorium. This bio-digital artifact provides the necessary habitat conditions for Flavobacteria to thrive for a month. Granting insights into the responsive behavior
of this organism, this work presents a design space, vocabulary, and application concepts to inspire HCI and design scholars to investigate the complex temporal qualities of living media for future user interfaces.
Sustainability is critical to our planet and thus our designs. Within HCI, there is a tension between the desire to create interactive electronic systems and sustainability. In this paper, we present the design of an interactive system comprising components that are entirely decomposable. We leverage the inherent material properties of natural materials, such as paper, leaf skeletons, and chitosan, along with silver nanowires to create a new system capable of being electrically controlled as a portable heater. This new decomposable system, capable of wirelessly heating to >70°C, is flexible, lightweight, low-cost, and reusable, and it maintains its functionality over long periods of heating and multiple power cycles. We detail its design and present a series of use cases, from enabling a novel resealable packaging system to acting as a catalyst for shape-changing designs and beyond. Finally, we highlight the important decomposable property of the interactive system when it meets end-of-life.
Given the ongoing environmental crisis and recent calls within HCI to engage with its cascading effects on the more-than-human world, this paper introduces the concept of the eco-technical interface as a critical zone at which designers can surface and subvert issues of multispecies relations such as nonhuman instrumentalization. The eco-technical interface represents the sites at which human, non-human, and technological interfaces overlap, ranging from remote sensing for conservation to smart devices for precision agriculture to community science platforms for species identification. Here, we highlight the pervasiveness of the eco-technical interface as a set of sites for further HCI inquiry, engage with the politics and instrumentalizing tendencies at three particular sites, and demonstrate tactics for cultivating attunement to, refexively accounting for, and subverting instrumentalization in multispecies encounter.