[ISEA2014] Paper: Chris Speed & Chris Barker – New Domestic Locations: Reconfiguring the home through the Internet of Things


This paper reflects on the reconstruction of the home as it becomes filtered through that data that is streamed from smart objects. Retrofitting a home for The Internet of Things involves the placement of multiple sensors that record changes in conditions in order to construct a simulacrum of the actual house from which to analyse and form understandings of behaviour and in turn opportunities for connection. This domestic data shadow (as it might be called) is not just a record of one inhabitants activities within the house, but the sum of all of the activities of all parties. The single routines that constituted patterns of behaviour of personal habit and ownership become mixed in a single database that, without individual signatures, are lost and the house loses it’s cognitive architectures. The paper will explore the implications upon the occupants sense of location as their model of home become reconfigured through the lens of a database. The paper will draw upon findings of the Hub of All Things (HAT) project funded by the Research Council’s UK Digital Economy Programme. Launched in June 2013, HAT will create the first ever Multi‑sided Market Technology Platform for the home, allowing individuals to trade their personal data for personalised products and services in the future. By collecting information through sensors on objects in their homes and integrating it with other personal data, the project will uncover insights of unprecedented depth and breadth into how we live our lives in relation to the experience of things and people     around us.

  • Chris Speed, University of Edinburgh, UK, is Chair of Design Informatics at the University of Edinburgh where his research focuses upon the Network Society, Digital Art and Technology and The Internet of Things. Chris has sustained a critical enquiry into how network technology can engage with the fields of art, design and social experience through a variety of international digital art exhibitions, funded research projects, books, journals and conferences.
  • Chris Barker, University of Edinburgh, UK, is a Software Engineer, Game Developer and Digital Artist. A graduate of Plymouth University with a BSc (Hons) degree in Digital Art and Technology, Chris’s primary focus was in mobile locative media and pervasive computing. Since finishing his degree in October 2012, Chris has been employed at the Edinburgh College of Art, Edinburgh University under the supervision of Prof. Chris Speed. Recently Chris has developed web applications for the AHRC Connected Communities project ‘Memories of Mr Seel’s Garden’ and the AHRC funded ‘Cinematic Geographies of Battersea.

Full text (PDF) p. 376-380