Presentations (2008)

Monday, February 25, 5:30 p.m.
Leazar Hall 311+312
NC State University, College of Design.

Presenters List

Sharon Joines
Industrial Design
Unit-dose Medication Packaging

Two novel unit-dose medication packages will be compared to plastic pill bottles currently on the market. Subjects will be recruited to represent young (18-30yrs), middle aged (48-60yrs) and elderly (78-90yrs) populations. Each packaging option will be opened five times. Two of the five trials will be performed under urgent conditions, determining how easily subjects can remove pills from the packaging under stress. Surface electrodes will be placed on four muscle groups in the upper extremity to record required muscle effort. Galvanic skin response will be taken from the palm of the hand to determine stress levels. Each subject will be timed and observations will be recorded during testing. A subjective survey will be given to each subject regarding perceived ease of use and required effort. The project is funded by the MeadWestvaco, the Research in Ergonomics and Design Lab, the Center for Universal Design and the Ergonomic Center of North Carolina.

Kofi Boone
Landscape Architecture
Reading the African Landscape as Contemporary Art

This paper applies conventions of contemporary art criticism to the spatial and place-based dynamics present in selected landscapes in Ghana, West Africa. The paper asks if the rubrics developed in contemporary art criticism provide insight not found through more mainstream forms of landscape analysis. It also asks if contemporary art criticism has the potential to be inclusive of the art traditions of Ghana in the reading of the landscape. Patterns and artifacts are essential characteristics of all forms of Ghanaian art, and are critical components to the cosmology of traditional west African religious systems. Art in a Ghanaian context is one of the few “windows” into the underlying structure of the society.

Tracy Krumm
Materials Studies in Textiles

I would like to show several images of two different, but related aspects of creative research. Both of these examples of my research are in material studies. I am currently experimenting with ways that earth pigments and clays can interact with sustainable textile materials to create stiffened structures. I am looking at the potential for these, both conceptually and practically. Conceptually, they are an extension of my artistic process and continue my work with nets that strain and sift, both physically and metaphorically. From the approach of practical application, I am working with these textiles as a print medium for surface design on walls; as a product that can be imbedded in earth plaster coatings; and as wall coverings or room dividers that are simply suspended in space. The second way I am utilizing large scale textile structures is in the construction of interlaced materials that respond to tension. These projects have so far included collaborating with the public in the making of simple structures by hand for specific sites. Community participation is important, as these projects are intended to convey a sense of integration through the connection of different cultures and histories. Through collaboration, participants make a visible contribution. Creative spirit is manifest through human interaction. The projects are also designed to create connections and make new relationships between parts of the site on which they are located.

Fei Wang

Panorama, as image, is linear spatiality and temporality; while it, as action, requires one’s movement and imaginative vision to get the totality. Wonder is central to any intellectual and design search, since wonder is a state of desire. Giambattista Vico states Wonder is human desire at its beginning. An almost erotic search for knowledge, for Luis Kahn, “Wonder is the forerunner of all knowing … Wonder is the primer. It primes knowing”. This project, named Thaumatorama, starts from the research of panorama at Mont-Royal, Montreal. Thaumatorama seeks the relation between the ordinary and the extraordinary, between actual and potential temporality and spatiality, and between representational retinal images and narrative wonders.

Nilda Cosco
Natural Learning Initiative
Research Methodology for Understanding the Impact of Design on Preschool Physical Activity

A methodological approach driven by theoretical constructs (concepts of behavior setting, motivation, and affordance) will be presented. Methods include accelerometry, the characterization of preschool play areas using behavior mapping (processed with GIS software), and video-tracking of individual children (processed with The Observer ©Noldus). Transfer of the methodology to other contexts (parks, outdoor museum settings, etc) and its advantages and analytical challenges will be discussed.

Hunt McKinnon
Options for Aging in Your Own Space

The current methods of caring for American retirees will not survive the next generation. There will be too many elderly Americans seeking admittance to Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRC) which currently have waiting lists from three to five years. Kane (1) concluded in her article that personal assistant services would be a significant way of answering the needs of the elderly who would prefer to stay in their own homes instead of moving into an assisted living facility. This situation is particularly acute in the eastern portion of North Carolina; Figure 1 indicates the distribution of CCRCs in the state. What this map shows is that residents of the state east of I-95 have fewer options than the residents of the state’s metropolitan areas. My research interests include assessing the various “in home” care programs that currently exist in view of the hypothesis that home delivery of services will be a requirement of the next generation of retirees and will be of particular benefit to the counties of our region. It will also assess the economics of developing new options of caring for the future generations of retirees in their own homes, neighborhoods and communities for as long as possible.

Vita Plume
Wovens: Structures / Patterns / Possibilties

I will discuss the work I have been doing using weaving, image, pattern as a means to explore identity and cultural patterning. Provide an overview of a home commodity, textile product that I have been developing with a team. Discussing the some of the issues I have encountered in working in a collaborative environment. Present some of the other models and products for textile research that have been used over the past several years, providing other possibilities for considering research in a more collaborative field.

Susan Brandeis
Digital Printing on Fabric: Stitched Gestures

My material investigations focus on digital printing on fabric. Digital printing allows a much wider gamut of color and ranges of images and patterns to be printed on fabric than is possible with hand screen-printing, with the added bonus of being safer (fewer effluents and contact with toxic dyestuffs) and less physically demanding on the (human) printer. However, many of the natural physical textural qualities of fabric are lost in the printing process. My experimentations have centered on approaches that both maximize image possibilities and restore or enhance the fabric texture. I have tested a variety of fabric structures, fiber choices, and surface qualities as printing substrates; applied combinations of hand printing, dyeing and fabric manipulation techniques to digitally printed images; and investigated the marriage of fabric surface characteristics and image. I selected direct application with pigments, chemical burn out, selective hand printing, and hand/machine embroidery as fruitful techniques to solve the problem. My most recent investigations focused on the interrelationship of stitched marks and digitally printed images, approaching embroidery as a drawing tool—developing a more expansive visual vocabulary of stitched lines as gestures to capture the quirks of my own hand, to create a variety of marks, to raise surface texture of the fabric, and to enhance the image.

Dana Raymond
Robotic Sculpture

My research is developing and/or adapting control systems to operate my kinetic sculpture. For most of my professional career as an artist/teacher, my research has consisted primarily of seeking inspiration for my creative development. This seems to be a common approach for artists. What has changed recently in my process is incorporating systems that are engineered by experts in electronic fields. My current research might be identified as robotic activation of kinetic sculpture. I differentiate between robotics and robots, mainly to insure that one does not assume that I am constructing traditional robots. Besides the actual life like creatures that scientists, engineers, and hobbyists have developed, robotics is most commonly used in manufacturing and hazardous operations. I don’t have specific interests in developing humanoid robots, but I am utilizing complex programmable electronics to run my sculptures. This I am achieving by collaboration with electrical engineers.

Laura Garofolo & David Hill
Threading Water

This proposal provides a solution for people displaced by a hurricanes as well as a new integration with a shoreline ecology displaced by two centuries of industrialization. The Hudson and East Rivers have lost much of what was once a thriving wetland. A category 3 hurricane would likely cause catastrophic damage to manmade structures close to the waterline, but perhaps could provide the impetus to remediate the struggling estuarine ecosystem. We propose a process of relief housing that is an intermediate stage between a presently suffering and a future thriving aquatic habitat. As a process of renewal and replacement that is perpetual, Threading Water aims to reinvigorate the shoreline culturally as well as economically and ecologically by breaking down the boundary between land and water. Threads extend the shore-bound infrastructure (electrical cabling, water and sewer lines) into the water and provide a pier-like pedestrian pathway that connects to the floating housing aggregations. Barges couple to the infrastructural threads and provide a floating structure for the housing units. The units are fabricated of flexible panelized and box components that can create multiple housing unit sizes and configurations. Once permanent housing is rebuilt online, the temporary units are replaced, but the threads remain as a system of recreational paths through a reemerging salt marsh. Threading Water is one of ten winners selected in the “What If New York City” Post-Disaster Housing Design Competition. The project has now moved into the funded development phase.

Will Temple
Graphic Design
Placing Demands: Challenging Legibility in Public Spaces

I will present a sampling of my current design practice in environmental signage as it reflects upon the shifting cultural status of reading in public. Operating within an idiom of three-dimensional lettering and vernacular typography, the work engages audience and context by its formal integration with the infrastructure of existing public amenities. Literally cut into or grafted onto benches, bridges and buildings, the lettering addresses the erosion of public space by evoking the function of legibility itself. Giving special attention to the physical difference between sign and placement in context and form and counterform in typography, the work commemorates losses to public discourse on site while placing demands on the reader to reflect upon both the context and nature of their activity.

Robin Moore
Natural Learning Iniative
How can designed and prepared outdoor environments stimulate and support science readiness learning behaviors of young children?

The focus of this study is the investigation of the relationships between the design of early childhood museum outdoor settings and science learning behaviors of children. The field research was conducted at the Bay Area Discovery Museum (BADM) Tot Lot and Discovery Cove, outdoor exhibit areas, which opened in the Fall 2002 and Spring 2003 respectively Lookout Cove was designed for children ages 3-8 with an emphasis on ages 5-8. Tot Spot was designed for children ages 4 and younger.

Georgia Bizios / Katie Wakeford
Architectural Interns in Public Service

The architectural profession has a proud tradition of public service. Unfortunately, the current levels of outreach and advocacy are insufficient in the face of problems such as the shortage of affordable housing, destruction by natural disasters, and the environmental toll of our built environment. While students may participate in a community-oriented design/build studio or professionals may provide service to non-profits, there is a scarcity of internship opportunities outside of traditional practice modes. This gap between the academy and the profession leaves many enthusiastic civic-minded interns without the jobs they would most desire. Additionally, the profession is shortchanged a potential vehicle for outreach and our communities miss out on a rich source of greatly needed design expertise. Thomas Fisher writes, “As with public defense, internship opportunities for students of public-interest architecture need to be established to facilitate their transition into this line of work.” If public service architecture is going to expand the profession’s domain in the way that public health does for medicine and the public defense system does for law, internship will play a critical role. Universities are in a unique position to foster the first step in this change. Sponsoring public service interns is a logical outgrowth existing extension endeavors. Additionally, universities are well-positioned to seek funding and leverage faculty for supervision. If eventually each American school of architecture were to employ just two interns annually, it would amount to a 200 person firm working in the service of the nation.

Pat Fitzgerald / Lee Cherry
Interactive Media Window: A non-contact interactive display

The Interactive Window is a back projected web-cam based system that can essentially turn any glass window (of any size) into a touch screen interface. This is a “non-contact interactive display” designed to be operated by intuitive human hand gesture. Gestures of press, push, scale and rotate are all programmable interactions of this technology. The system has the potential to be multi-touch (two handed gestures simultaneously recognized) and initial attempts at doing this have been successful. Similar technologies are extremely expensive, have their own closed operating system and require multiple cameras. This platform is based on open source culture and is developed with Adobe Flash 3.0 development application – a widely available and popular development software, making the technology accessible to most (non-programming) designers and content developers. Additionally, this technology is based on projected light, so it easily scaleable and customizable in its size and proportions. It’s set up cost is extremely inexpensive by comparison, and thus, potentially very popular to the general public.

Zaki Islam
PhD Candidate, NCSU College of Design
Using Satellite Image for Neighborhood Research with Children in Dhaka, Bangladesh.

This presentation is about the use of satellite images as a tool in collecting information from children regarding their use of outdoors in their respective neighborhoods. This study aims to analyze relationships between characteristics of the built environment and children’s outdoor activity. One hundred and eighteen children 10 to 12 years of age were selected from seven randomly selected schools in Dhaka, Bangladesh. During each interview, an aerial view of the respective respondent’s neighborhood was used with the help of an internet connected cell-phone and laptop along with the survey questionnaire. Data collected through this process, can later be used in CAD and GIS software easily for further analysis. Use of aerial views during the interviews proved to be a very useful tool for collecting data regarding children’s outdoor activity.

Orçun Kepez
Ph.D., Post Doctoral Research Associate
Natural Learning Initiative, NCSU
Bringing Space Syntax and GIS to Behavioral Research: Recent Examples from Research Efforts

The use of objective spatial analysis instruments in design research has two main benefits. First, the results can be displayed in visually rich interfaces that enhance the communication with non-research community. Second, the results of these methods are easily adoptable due to the objective approach followed in research design that incorporated using spatial analysis instruments. The first set of instruments that is going to be introduced is developed under theoretical foundations of Space Syntax. The corresponding research was conducted in small scale assisted living facilities to test whether differences in configuration of plan layouts affect the health and well-being of the residents. In this research space syntax was used to determine that all plan types studied were different in terms of configuration of common areas. The second set of spatial analysis instruments is adopted from Geographical Information Science and the corresponding research was about understanding the relation between physical activity of children and design of neighborhood parks. The use of GIS software and analysis techniques provided not only the places in the park where children were more active but also resulted in a prediction models based on the existing distribution of physical activity over studied parks.


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