Loaded dice and the inflatable cat

I truly love this paper which describes an approach to co-designing new Internet of Things devices and interactions (Berger et al., 2019). It brings together a few things that I think embody timeless approaches to designing:

  1. They abstracted the essence of the design space into two dice, one for sensors and one for actuators.
  2. They used a set of cards to help create different design scenarios.
  3. The used prompts for the participants to say what kind of interaction they were trying to create.

All of this led to some great examples of novel designs, three of which are included in the paper. Inspiring stuff.


Berger, A., Odom, W., Storz, M., Bischof, A., Kurze, A., & Hornecker, E. (2019, May). The inflatable cat: Idiosyncratic ideation of smart objects for the home. In Proceedings of the 2019 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (pp. 1-12).