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Designing Through Data Panel at 2016 Fast Company Innovation Festival

Suzy Genzler, NBBJ’s Medical Planner, and Tim Johnson, Partner at NBBJ, led an expert panel on designing through data at the 2016 Fast Company Innovation Festival. The panel talked about how data collection is changing the way buildings and cities are being designed across different parameters of scale. The event was reported in Fast Company.

The enormous amount of data that is harvested from our digital footprints and devices is helping scientists, engineers, and designers better understand the world around us and our interactions with it.

Mark Rolston, founder and CEO of argodesign, explained how behavioral data can be used to glean insights on interface design. When it comes to our homes and offices, he believes that we need seamless interfaces that are more intuitive and that remain invisible or in the background until called upon for a particular task. During the discussion Mark asked several questions: “Our attitude has been, how do we — first and foremost not for collection but for customer value — make the room a computer? You’ll learn a hell of a lot about what people are doing in those rooms, but more interestingly for me, can we make the room active in a way that we get value as a group?”

Mark used his prototype, Interactive Light, as an example of this vision. By using projectors, cameras, and microphones, the system can follow people around a room and provide contextual interfaces that are projected on surfaces in their environment.

Other panel speakers from MIT and Placemeter discussed the impacts of data collection on the workforce and in transit systems.

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