Spaces, People, and Technologies

Spaces, People, and Technologies

A CUSO Seminar in University of Fribourg, 13-14 June 2016

Boulevard de Pérolles 90, Fribourg, Room B130


In the era of ubiquitous computing, reaching a sustainable integration of technology into the built environment has emerged as a major challenge for both technology designers as well as building and urban architects. There has been a remarkable body of design-oriented research practices that fall at the crossroads of human-computer interaction and place-making, namely the projects related to the notions of "Smart Home" or "Responsive Place". Furthermore, on a more conceptual level, underpinning theories of modern HCI such as embodied interaction and activity theory have been revised to include or show compatibility with the architectural concepts such as "spatial configuration". The newly created Human-IST research center at the University of Fribourg carries out research in this area, and has a multi-disciplinary focus as one of its mandates. This seminar, which aims to bring together some of the main figures of this multidisciplinary domain, whose expertise and experiences cover both the practical and theoretical angles, falls directly into this newly evolving area of research in Switzerland.


Speakers and Content
Liam Bannon is Emeritus Professor in the Department of Computer Science and Information Systems & Senior Researcher with Lero- The Irish Software Institute, at the University of Limerick, Ireland. From  2010-2015  he was also Honorary Professor in Human-Computer Interaction at Aarhus University, Denmark. In recent years, he has also held Visiting Professor positions in several Universities in France, Spain and Italy. He has been involved in international networking projects in the fields of HCI and CSCW in India, China and Brazil. More
Spaces, People & Technologies – Putting it all together? Understanding the Human Use and Experience of Space
The increasing interest in “smart” homes and “smart cities” in recent technological discourse paints a picture of human and social life that is enmeshed and cosseted by a technological infrastructure that supports and enhances our lives. The earlier visions of ambient intelligence which were promoted over a decade ago seem to have become re-energized in much of the recent discussions around the internet of things and ambient assisted living in the fields of HCI, CSCW and Interaction Design.However, It still seems that our understanding of the human experience of, and use of space, which has been garnered over the years through a variety of studies in such different areas as psychology, sociology, anthropology, environmental psychology, ergonomics, humanistic geography, architecture and urban planning, human-computer interaction, computer-supported cooperative work, interaction design etc. has not been taken on board in many of these discussions about how to create habitable spaces. More
Mikael Wiberg is a professor of informatics at Umeå university, Sweden. He has held positions as chaired professor in Human-Computer Interaction at Uppsala University, Sweden and he has also served as Research Director for Umeå Institute of Design. His research interests are in the area of interaction design and in particular he has in his most recent work focused on aspects of the materiality of interaction and method development for concept-driven interaction design research.
The Temporality, Spatiality & Materiality of Interaction: Implications for Designing Interaction
In this talk I will go through a number of research projects that I have conducted over the last few years. A common theme for these projects has been interaction design explorations at the intersection of architecture and interaction. In this seminar I will talk about one project that we had together with the icehotel and Philips on interactive architecture and I will also talk about an ongoing project on interactive light design at the scale of architecture. In my talk I will use these two projects as an empirical point of departure for a more theoretical discussion on  interactive architecture as an emerging area of interaction design practice and research. I will also introduce the notion of the "temporality, spatiality and materiality of interaction" as a framework for thinking about, and designing for, the intersection of interaction and architectural design.
Thomas Pederson is associate professor at IT University of Copenhagen and acting manager of the Pervasive Interaction Technology Lab there ( His fields of interest include Human-Computer Interaction, Wearable Computers, and Context-Aware Systems. He believes that human perception, cognition, and action capabilities are defining factors for future wearable systems that talk to us in increasingly subtle ways through our peripheral attention.
Future wearable systems that change the way we perceive, think, and act
I will provide my vision of potential future wearable systems that influence human everyday behaviour in consciously perceivable and imperceivable ways. Grounded in current understanding of human perception and cognition, I will discuss how current mobile and wearable devices affect human behaviour (for better and worse) followed by how emerging technologies (e.g. wearable projection displays, gaze trackers) could lead to systems that bypasses our attention and communicates with unconscious cognitive processes directly. The benefit would be a calmer yet fuller experience of the surrounding space with possibilities for achieving our goals more easily. The danger lies in the potential malicious use of this unconscious interaction channel to make people do things they actually don’t want to.


All the students, researchers and professors registered at CUSO universities (i.e. EPFL, Universities of Fribourg, Geneva, Lausanne, Bern and Neuchâtel) are eligible to apply. Priority will be given to students ; PostDocs and senior researchers will be selected according to their scientific activity and closeness to the topic of the seminar.  For members of the CUSO,  we will reimburse travel costs for half-price second class SBB tickets; lunch will be provided by the organises. You will receive reimbursement instructions during the school. Registration deadline: June 1st

Please register directly through CUSO. (The registration link on top of the page)


  9:00-10:15 10:15-10:45 10:45-12:00 12:00-13:30 13:30-14:45 14:45-15:15 15:15-16:30
Monday 13th Liam Bannon Coffee Liam Bannon Lunch Mikael Wiberg Coffee Mikael Wiberg
Tuesday 14th Thomas Pederson Coffee Thomas Pederson - - - -



Dr. Hamed Alavi, University of Fribourg, Switzerland

Prof. Denis Lalanne, University of Fribourg, Switzerland


This workshop is part of the 3eme cycle romand in Informatics For more information, please refer to the conference website at:


Mikael Wiberg 1st Part

Mikael Wiberg 2nd Part

Thomas Pederson