Bonnie Zivcic

Interaction with Our Environment through Technology

The Anthropocene is largely about how we as humans interact with and change the environment around us, responding in different ways to different stimuli. Similar to the humans we have developed through our scenario, who have had a great effect on the environment around them. Expanding and changing the environment through various types of electrical technologies. Many of these, both in our current society and our scenario, however lead to detrimental effects on the natural environment and climate, creating a need for a development in new technologies to change the ways in which humans react and respond to the environment around them.

The Sydney based designers, Martin Tomitsch and Luke Hespanhol research and create projects around the various ways humans interact with their environment. Martin Tomitsch who works in the design lab at the University of Sydney, has worked on the project ‘Share Your Power’. This project creates a piece of technology which gives a real time display of a person’s energy usage, displayed outside side a person’s house through an electro-mechanical, flip-dot system.


(Tomitsch 2014)


(Tomitsch 2014)

This particular piece of technology is quite similar to the technology developed within our scenario, as each family household contains an electrical device which displays how much energy they have used in their quota of energy allotted, as well as how much energy the city has left in its reserve. Consequently through the implementation of these display pieces of technology into domestic environments, it causes a change within the response of the humans around them and within the households. Where people have a greater awareness and closer involvement with just how much energy they are using, causing them to give more conscientious thought to how they use energy in their daily lives. Also aiding in creating behaviours in people where they can become competitive in saving as much energy as possible when compared to others who also have their energy usage displayed to the public.

The designer Luke Hespanhol, has contributed to the project Chromapollination, which was in installation at Vivid Sydney in 2012. Hespanhol helped to create this light sculpture that subtlety interacts with the public as they move through it, where large dandelion lights track a person’s movement as they walk from one dandelion to the next, the person bringing ‘seeds’ along with them from the dandelion they passed and pollinating the next dandelion they walk pass.

(Hespanhol, L. 2012)

http:// (Hespanhol, L. 2012)

These creations of technology cause interaction with the environment on a greater level, allowing for a reconnection with the natural environment. With the need for the reconnection present in our scenario as the city is built up due to over population leaving little room for natural aspects. The text Wearable Forest Clothing System: Beyond Human-Computer Interaction (Kobayashi, Ueoka & Hirose 2009) explores the concept of HCBI (Human Computer Biosphere Interaction), where in the same way that humans are able to interact on a deeper level with each other through implicit, non-verbal communication picking up on the mood and emotions of others. Computer technologies would also allow for this implicit connection to the environment in channelling certain information and data from the environment through more unconventional senses like hearing.


(Kobayashi, H., Ueoka, R. & Hirose, M. 2009)

Hence new technologies (similar to our speculative object) enable humans to become re-linked and closer to the natural environment around them, causing a positive and greater response in revitalising the natural environment.

     Reference List

Hespanhol, L. & Tomitsch, M. 2015, ‘Strategies for intuitive interaction in public urban spaces’, Interacting with computers, Special Issue: Intuitive Interaction, pp. 1-17.

Kobayashi, H., Ueoka, R. & Hirose, M. 2009, ‘Wearable forest clothing system: beyond human-computer interaction’, Leonardo, Vol. 42, no. 4, pp. 300-06.

Hespanhol, L. 2012, Chromapollination, Sydney Australia, viewed 29 October 2015, < >.

Hespanhol, L. 2015, Luke hespanhol, Sydney Australia, viewed 29 October 2015, < >.

Hespanhol, L. 2013, Luke hespanhol, Vimeo, Sydney Australia, viewed 29 October 2015, < >.

Tomitsch, M. 2014, Share your power, Squarespace 6, Sydney Australia, viewed 29 October 2015, < >.

Bonnie Zivcic

INTERVEIW: Technological, Environmental Relationship

Through interviewing two people about their views on human interaction with technology and the environment. Primary research has been developed on two differing views into what the future will see in terms of technology, how it will interact with humans and how humans will go about changing the environment.

The first interview was taken from a senior fashion designer and patternmaker from a large swimwear label. Her view of technology into the future was that there would not be a drastic change in new technologies over the next 35 years but rather increasing in smaller increments to already existing technologies.  With technology in the fashion industry also not having a huge change or advancements since a lot of new technologies like laser cutting have already recently been implemented on a large scale to the mass market. However she also stated that there would probably still be further advancements when it comes to the use of computers within the fashion industry particularly through printing on fabrics. I believe this is definitely the case, for instance we can already see further aspects of fashion designing done digitally through the introduction of computer programs like Optitex which show garment patterns that have been created on the computer, on the 3D form of a body with alterations in colour and patterns and to see how the garment would sit and drape on a body before even a sample garment has to be made.


(Optitex 2014)

 (Optitex 2014)

In terms of the environment she envisioned the public turning away from fast fashion and hopefully from a throw away culture. Instead in the future that there would be an increase in the demand for higher quality items to be made, where they would be cared for and mended rather than tossed out.

The second person interviewed was a young adult male, who saw that advancements in technology would depend on the demand within the market place. With the constant want for devices which create convenience and ease for different tasks, for example hand held portable devices. These items not necessarily being created for tasks of great importance but can be mostly more of a gimmick.

In combination with the creation of technology for convenience it would also see the future progressing to a further on-line state through younger children raised with on-line integration. Leading to a future that will see people less and less interaction with the outside world as on-line computer technology allows for an instant access of information and services.

In terms of the environment, ultimately he saw a future where most people are concerned about the environment, but not passionate enough about the environment to make great changes within their own lives. With the environment being left to technological solutions, creating a future where many places of the natural world have been altered with different types of human technology where there is hardly any pure natural spaces left which can survive in the climate by themselves without the help of human technology.

Here we see two clear different perspectives on technology in the future may progress to, from a fashion point of view, having a closer look into technologies of the fashion industry and from a younger adult male who has grown up with a world of on-line technology.

 Reference List

Optitex 2014, Pattern design software, viewed 25 October 2015, < >.

Bonnie Zivcic

Data in the Masses

The documenting and expression of data has changed greatly in relatively recent years with the start of the internet and social networking amongst the public. Where information is now not only found from and devised by smaller groups of people where information has been analysed and curated but is instead overly abundant and unstructured by the mass.

This data constructed by the mass is collected and analysed. However as time continues and the population of the world and the people using the internet and social media increases through online sites such as facebook and twitter where the number of users are continually expanding. Therefore causing the amount of data produced by the public to also vastly increase.

The increase in online data collection generates both positive and negative effects. Where in social networking and micro-blogging sites like twitter and facebook, people choose to make certain data and information available to the public domain. Here the data can become beneficial to businesses and helps to give voice for the opinion of the individual rather than always from an organisation. Also as large amounts of data are collected almost instantly it enables a better understanding and assistance within larger scale events like humanitarian aid and disaster relief.

Yet as the amount of data increases in size and in variety there becomes problems with the way data is stored since the links between data become complex changes the way it can be managed and stored. As well as in the analysis of data, data becomes generalised and loses it specificity to personal situations. Where the data collated from the internet isn’t always truly representative due to false searches and searches of no intention. For example apps and plugins have been produced in an attempt to aid privacy of searches through flooding and confusing the system with periodically and randomly generated false searches. In addition to much of the information collected in the online space being by-product data where the data never really had a specific intention and hence is harder to classify with the current system in place.

The extent of online data can also lend itself to creating rumour propagation and misinformation to the public. Where the data, rather than being “raw” and “objective” can actually become subjective in the way it is looked into and interpreted. Leading to problems in the way solutions are produced, which no longer focus on the true cause of the issue but instead follow the subjective data and create a solution that doesn’t attend to the real cause of the issue.

However if extra information was provided to the public (a basic metadata) about the origins of the data posted online.

How the piece of information was modified as it was propagated through social media and how an owner of the piece of information is connected to the transmission of the statement – provides additional context to the piece of information.  (Barbier et al. 2013, p. 9)

Enabling the public to better determine the extent to just how false and how reliable the information posted really is.

Reference List

Barbier, G., Feng, Z., Gundecha, P. & Liu, H. (ed.) 2013, Provenance in data in social media, Morgan & Claypool, US.

Raley, Rita. 2013, ‘Dataveillance and countervailance,’ in Gitelman, L. (ed) “Raw data” is an oxymoron, Cambridge, MA: Cambridge University Press, pp. 131-9.

Bloomberg Business 2015, Twitter is about mining data for insights: chris moody, viewed 27 August 2015, <>.

Ford, P. 2013, the hidden technology that makes twitter huge, Bloomberg Business, viewed 27 August 2015, <>.

Facebook 2015, Number of monthly active Facebook users worldwide as of 2nd quarter 2015, statista, viewed 27 August 2015, <>.

Bonnie Zivcic

Climate in the Anthropocene Action

The climate of the Earth often comes under debate, about whether climate change is due to human impact or what are the extents that should be undertaken in order to combat the change in climate in consideration to other political factors.

For the climate debate to successfully move forward there needs to be change in the way in which the climate debate is approached and for the traditional ‘science-versus-politics repertoire’ (Latour 2013) to essentially change. At the moment the debate hinges around the two sides of science, the definite facts of nature, and politics, the ideology and passions of the people. Which is seen to for the time being to only impede with the definite facts of science. However to move forward into action the two sides must instead agree on the occurrence of the change in climate and work together in order to achieve a viable compromise and solution which uses parts of both sides, achieving political peace and progressing ahead.

Through the realisation of the change in climate new and further ideas and innovations can be thought of by designers from all backgrounds and put into action by both individuals and the community at large. For example the escalation of natural disasters or the rise in sea levels could see the event of floods in many urban areas. Hence this creates innovation through the design of resilient buildings/architecture to handle uncertainty and the changing conditions caused by the flooding. In order to create an urban environment which is resilient to flood conditions there needs to be adaptation and flexibility with diversity and on a large spatial scale. Through a feedback process the higher level spatial scale (of the city as a whole) will affect the success of resiliency within the lower level, (the buildings, transport network and business environments) and then in turn innovation in the lower level will also enhance the higher level as many small changes in a city inform progress towards a city well adapted to uncertainty. (Ryan 2010).

As flood resistant innovations made to a house can be applied to many homes within the urban area and therefore improving the city as a whole against floods (the higher level). For instance the “amphibious” house seen in the clip bellow from season 14 episode 7 in the Grand Designs TV series, resides next to a river and hence has been built with an adaptability enabling it to respond to the event of a flood and in a sense making the house flood proof. The design of the house involves creating a hole in the ground below the house of five metres, four metres under the water level. The hole is then lined and has another 150 tonne concrete box built within it which is designed to float as water fills the gap between the two when it floods.

(Clockwork Digital Visuals 2015)

Considering the rise in population over numerous cities around the globe it is now more necessary and viable for people to be able to bring resources together. In order to achieve a city that in the time of the Anthropocene where humans have such a large impact on the world, can use their actions to benefit the environment with a degree in flexibility.

Reference List:

Ryan, Z., Zevenbergen, C., Grau, D. & Kekez, Z.C. 2010, Building with water, Birkhäuser, Basel, Switzerland.

Latour, B. 2013, ‘Telling friends from foes at the time of the anthropocene,’ Lecture prepared for the EHESS-Centre Koyré- Sciences Po symposium “Thinking the Anthropocene” Paris, 14th-15th, November 2013.

Grand Designs UKTV 2015, Grand Designs Season 14 Episode 7 – River Thames:Floating House, videorecording, Youtube, viewed 20 August 2015, .

Clockwork Digital Visuals 2015, Grand Designs – Floating House, videorecording, Youtube, viewed 20 August 2015, .