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Preview: Design with Intent


Dr Dan Lockton

Last Build Date: Fri, 22 Sep 2017 03:19:05 +0000


Fictions Matter Too: A Vision for an Imaginaries Lab in Design

Mon, 28 Aug 2017 03:26:16 +0000

“If men define situations as real, they are real in their consequences” William Thomas and Dorothy Swaine Thomas, 1928 — later named as the ‘Thomas Theorem’ The events of the last couple of years, from Brexit to Trump, have been a vivid demonstration for our… Read more

Thinking About Things That Think About How We Think

Tue, 30 May 2017 18:10:55 +0000

We often hear the phrase ‘intelligent environments’ used to describe spaces in which technology is embedded, in the form of sensors, displays, and computational ability. This might be related to Internet of Things, conversational interfaces or emerging forms of artificial intelligence. But what does ‘intelligence’ […]

Exploring Qualitative Displays and Interfaces

Sun, 07 May 2017 04:33:47 +0000

by Dan Lockton, Delanie Ricketts, Shruti Aditya Chowdhury (Imaginaries Lab, Carnegie Mellon School of Design) and Chang Hee Lee (Royal College of Art) Much of how we construct meaning in the real world is qualitative rather than quantitative. We think and act in response to,… Read more

Media Files:

A complicated year

Sat, 31 Dec 2016 15:19:57 +0000

2016 has been a complicated year, and circumstances have meant that I have, rather unprofessionally, neglected this blog, my website, and the Design with Intent newsletter (which now has nearly 400 very patient subscribers). This is just a brief note to say, mainly, that I’ve… Read more

Play Lab: Exploring Ambiguity

Wed, 21 Dec 2016 02:16:11 +0000

The ‘Time-Traveling Hipster’ (1941) Carnegie Mellon School of Design, Senior Design Labs, Fall 2016, 51—401 Final projects: see Discussion of the final projects Updated: December 21, 2016: Please note: this syllabus has been updated over the semester and rewritten into a kind of ‘review’ of what happened.… Read more

Two-faced: Looking back and forwards

Thu, 31 Dec 2015 23:55:55 +0000

Thanks everyone who’s helped and been supportive in 2015. It’s been a busy year and I barely stopped to think about a lot of very important things, but spent too long thinking about other things which in retrospect probably aren’t so important. I’m sure that’s… Read more

Let’s See What We Can Do: Designing Agency

Thu, 24 Dec 2015 18:46:50 +0000

‘What does energy look like?’ drawn by Zhengni Li, participant in Drawing Energy (Flora Bowden & Dan Lockton) How can we invert ‘design for behaviour change’ and apply it from below, enabling people to understand, act within, and change the behaviour of the systems of… Read more

Design with Intent: The Book

Wed, 12 Aug 2015 23:09:04 +0000

I’m very excited to announce that O’Reilly Media will be publishing my Design with Intent book in Autumn 2016, with an Early Release version available before that. Please do sign up to the new newsletter for updates! Design is increasingly about people’s behaviour, but this… Read more

What does energy look like? Drawing Energy book now available

Fri, 07 Aug 2015 13:32:54 +0000

Last year, Flora Bowden blogged about our investigation of people’s perceptions of ‘energy’—how do people visualise, or think about, what is for the most part an abstract, invisible concept? A book detailing our research, Drawing Energy, is now available to download or order: Bowden, F., Lockton, D., Gheerawo, R. and Brass, C. (2015). Drawing Energy: […]


Sun, 26 Apr 2015 21:39:44 +0000

It’s been a bit of a chaotic time recently, both in family terms and professionally, so my apologies for the lack of updates. In February I started as Visiting Research Tutor in Innovation Design Engineering (IDE) at the RCA, helping develop a programme of research… Read more

Creative Citizens’ Variety Pack: Inspiring digital ideas from community projects

Tue, 30 Dec 2014 21:43:28 +0000

Launched at the Creative Citizens conference in September 2014, the Creative Citizens’ Variety Pack is a collection of practical case studies: 12 diverse, inspirational community projects, all making use of digital tools in creative ways for social benefit, with suggestions and advice from the people involved. Along with projects from the three strands of the […]

As we may understand: A constructionist approach to ‘behaviour change’ and the Internet of Things

Sun, 02 Nov 2014 15:27:32 +0000

In a world of increasingly complex systems, we could enable social and environmental behaviour change by using IoT-type technologies for practical co-creation and constructionist public engagement. [This article is cross-posted to Medium, where there are some very useful notes attached by readers] We’re heading into… Read more

Drawing Energy and Powerchord at the London Design Festival 2014

Sat, 13 Sep 2014 10:37:55 +0000

The latest Powerchord prototype in use.. The London Design Festival is a huge event taking place across London from today (13th) for the next couple of weeks, and we’re proud to say that two of our SusLab mini-projects, Drawing Energy and Powerchord, are featured, as part of two exhibitions.    V&A Digital Design Weekend: 20 [...]

Introducing The Story Machine: Part 2

Wed, 14 May 2014 12:00:16 +0000

Co-creation of the Story Machine In Part 1, we discussed some of the challenges and ‘process friction’ in integrating digital storytelling into community activities, and introduced our initial work with The Mill, a community centre in Walthamstow, east London, which provides space and resources for local creative citizens to organise groups, events and activities. The […]

Introducing The Story Machine: Part 1

Tue, 13 May 2014 11:16:44 +0000

Friction in integrating digital storytelling into community activities For some community groups, the use of technology and digital media is built into the work they do—for example, the Wards Corner Community Coalition‘s very successful use of Stickyworld and social media to tell their story, integrated into the organisation of a whole range of community events. […]

Tools for ideation and problem solving: Part 1

Tue, 22 Apr 2014 15:06:58 +0000

   Back in the darkest days of my PhD, I started blogging extracts from the thesis as it was being written, particularly the literature review. It helped keep me motivated when I was at a very low point, and seemed to be of interest to… Read more