Regarding Value in Digital Serendipitous Interactions

The Journal of Science and Technology of the Arts vol. 8, number 2, has just been published. This issue includes a paper by Ricardo Melo and myself, “Regarding Value in Digital Serendipitous Interactions”.

Digital technologies have become our privileged method of interacting with information. With their ubiquity, and focus on personalisation, optimisation and functionality, chance and accidental interactions in the Digital Medium are being replaced with filtered, predictable and known ones, limiting the scope of possible user experiences.

In order to promote the design of richer experiences that go beyond the functionally-driven paradigm, we propose that digital systems be designed in order to favour serendipity. Through a literature-based analysis of serendipity, we explore the distinct meanings of value that are possible with serendipitous systems, offering examples of the current state of the art, observing the methods used to do so, and proposing a possible typology, while highlighting unexplored fields, experiences and interactions.

Special Issue of the Journal of Science and Technology of the Arts: xCoAx 2016

The Journal of Science and Technology of the Arts, published by the Portuguese Catholic University in Porto, has just released its special issue with a selected set of extended papers from the xCoAx 2016 conference. The issue includes works from Agustina Andreoletti and Alice Rzezonka; Rodrigo Hernández-Ramírez; Romi Mikulinsky and Yanai Toister; Anna Daudrich; Catarina Lee and Luísa Ribas; Pedro Cardoso; and Hanns Holger Rutz. It’s open access at

Defamiliarisation towards Divergency

The xCoAx 2016 proceedings have just been published, including a paper by Ricardo Melo and myself.

Digital interactive systems have systematically been designed in order to cater to the user’s desires, through user-friendly and user-centred design methodologies, privileging pleasurable and effective experiences. While this may be necessary and a worthy pursuit in many cases, it led to the rise of convergent systems focusing mainly on efficiency, productivity, and optimisation not only in those areas of our lives that require this mindset but to all areas regardless, relegating the interactor to the role a client experiencing a product, while limiting the creative and exploratory potential of the digital medium. In order to introduce divergency, we propose the concept of defamiliarisation as a method to reduce the predictability of interactions with digital technology, and suggest possible methods to accomplish it in interactive systems.

Playing in 7D: An Action-Oriented Framework for Video Games (A Summary)

The xCoAx 2016 proceedings have just been published, including a paper by Pedro Cardoso and myself.

This paper is summary of our Ph.D. thesis, a work that proposes an analysis on the player-game system relationship through the perspective of an action-oriented framework. This framework is centred on the existence of actors, which are the entities through which action is enacted in the game, and in which the player and the game system are a part of. The grounding principles of this framework are seeded on a transition of action into experience, based on communicational systems that structure the dynamic formation of networks of actors from which distinct behaviours emerge, which, in their turn, promote the enactment of diverse sequences of events establishing narrative, which is a source of experience of the player.

Chronology, responsiveness, thinking and actuation, transcoding, focus, depth, and traversal are the 7 dimensions we unveiled by focusing on the relationship of the player-game system pair through the lens of this action-oriented framework, a framework that, despite seeing both as actors, is able to consider their distinct natures and roles.

We do not consider this work to be an ultimate theory of action. Above all, it is a proposal that video games can be regarded as action-based artefacts, a call to awareness for game designers that when designing for action they are working with the fundaments on which video games are built upon.

Augmented Space in Artistic Production: The Relationship Between Moving Image and Physical Environments

The ICLI 2016 proceedings have just been published, including a paper by Ivo Teixeira, Pedro Tudela, and myself, “Augmented Space in Artistic Production: The Relationship Between Moving Image and Physical Environments”.

In this paper we establish a relationship between virtual elements and physical environments (both in the private as in the urban context). We review both theoretical and empirical works on which we base our methodology of performative-led research. The outputs are works that promote Augmented Space experiences in the artistic context with the purpose of creating new readings and experiences of the place through audiovisual installations and live performances.