Describe Work Process & Method
  • Task analysis
    • other examples (background research)
    • our Task Analysis Loop
      1. Task and Action analysis
      2. Sound description
      3. Relevance of sound for action: Sound feedback: how does the sound affect the action? (what about relevance of sound for task /goal? Sound is most often linked to immediate action, not so much to the end goal)

  • describe sound linked to action (directly / indirectly?)
  • describe action/sound category (manipulation vs. automatic)
  • describe relevance of sound to action
  • describe possible hypothesises arising from a specific phenomenological observation

Questions arising
  • what detail of analysis makes sense? for what?
  • what level of sound description is useful for creating generalizable approaches to design sounds for action?
  • task (goal) versus action (no goal, self-referential)
  • function of an object vs. actions to accomplish a task: the same goal may be accomplished through different actions
  • issues of intentionality
  • do we need a concept of action-sound Gestalt?
    • how abstract can we go? we don't want to lose the referentiality to the action, but individuate the elements that can be used in design. These abstract elements are based on meaning related to action, rather then to other references such as context or culture which we are also exploring.
  • in which cases is context important? which cases could be generalizable?
  • Are the sounds of actions even genereralizable to other context? Or are the sounds intrinsically part of that specific action with that specific object?
  • Can we transfer the sounds to other contexts only on the level of metaphor, or also on more basic properties of the sounds as such? Isn't the sound we hear always and intuitively linked to a specific action, and therefore can be only metaphorically used (eg. opening sound of can -> opening sound of application)
  • how is meaning created and associated with a specific sound? How many elements of analysis do we need to define a specific meaning? If we have the sound of a crow alone, as apposed to a crow and a female voice, this obviously may "focus" the meaning, but only in a certain context, or if the sound of the female voice is of a specific nature (old, mean laugh). Now how does such parameter matching happen in the meaning creation process of everyday action sounds?
  • How do we embed the action bits into the overall interaction process, and, in paralell, the sound bits into an overall sonic process? What provides continuity? In the "real" world it is usually the mechanical and material properties of the objects

The relevance to CLOSED
    • first step to building a design methodology
    • in design process - design opportunities
    • understanding design for action
    • action-sound couples - can they be generalized?
    • action bits - how do they map to sound categorization by Gaver and Verona?
    • knowledge on abstracting sounds from their "natural" conditions (eg. material & mechanics) to more symbolic or metaphoric levels

Report on Action Analysis