The design research
In his design research work, Jasper Jeurens has explored how to design technology from a phatic perspective: focussed on evoking feelings of connectedness and contact.
His designs are characterized by a non-functional focus. Instead, he designs digital technology as a medium, aimed at drawing people closer together.
Inspired by Jakobson’s model for the functions of language*, he has shown that by ditching the message, or the contents of an information exchange, opportunities open up for the design phatic technology.
In multiple design cases, he found that information density, ambiguity in design, real-time and contextual relevance are four factors that help drive the design of phatic technology.
The article Ditching the message reports on the case of sharing data about the habits of his newborn son and the way this act was a way to connect for father and mother.
* Jakobson, Roman. “Poetry of grammar and grammar of poetry.” Lingua 21 (1968): 597-609.
The new practice
His phatic designs are characterized by a non-functional focus. Instead, he designs digital technology as a medium, aimed at drawing people closer together. This is a shift in the role of digital technology. and opens up a new area of design in the field of Human-Computer Interaction.
Especially in sensitive social settings, he advocates exploring the potential application of phatic techologies. This will allow us to design future digital applications that truly fit the complexity of the social contexts they aim to support. We have an opportunity to make blunt digitizations of social practices a thing of the past.
“By asking ‘What phatic exchanges should awareness systems support’, instead of ‘What information should awareness systems convey?’ we reorient our design focus to seriously consider the extent to which awareness systems contribute to feelings of awareness and ongoing connectedness between people”.*
* Vetere, Frank, Jeremy Smith, and Martin Gibbs. “Phatic interactions: Being aware and feeling connected.” Awareness systems. Springer, London, 2009. 173-186.
Jasper Jeurens is a design researcher with a background in interaction design. At the Center for IT+Media at HAN University of Applied Sciences, he works with students, social scientists and people in the social domain to design digital technology.
He has published his work at several international conferences in the field of Human-Computer Interaction (HCI), and has won awards for his work.
He welcomes anyone who would like to collaborate. Please refer to the affiliated website for a complete overview of his published research.
Contact through em.notorp@sneruejrepsaj