CS4009 Directed Study 2019

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Timetable & Venues

  • Lecture - Monday 11am-12pm SG20
  • Seminar -Monday 12:00-14:00 CS1045

Module leader

  • Dr. Gabriela Avram
  • Office: CS2031
  • Office Hours:
    • Mondays 2-3pm

Teaching assistant

  • Kim O'Shea
  • Office: CS2034

Module objectives

This module is dedicated to student-led, research oriented study. On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  1. Identify specialised literature and web-based resources for a specific theme.
  2. Review a body of scholarly works or examples of practice of particular importance for the selected topic of research.
  3. Compare and contrast major examples of work in a particular area presenting different attitudes and approaches to the topic.
  4. Produce a presentation and a report describing the chosen topic of research and its state of the art.
  5. Analyse the main contributions proposed by selected works.
  6. Critically appraise the limits and strengths of the materials studied.
  7. Participate in discussions and presentations with classmates and lecturers around the topic of research.
  8. Cooperate in small groups of research and study around a specific topic.
  9. Display an attitude of self-reflection and critique of their own design practice.

Class work and assessment

Overview of assessments

The assignments will be done in groups of 3-4 students. Groups will have to be formed by week 2.

  • Group Assignment: Annotated Literature (25%)
  • Group Assignment: Presentation of design fiction idea (20%)
  • Individual Assignment: A short paper of a design fiction (25%)
  • Individual Assignment: 2 portfolio posts (30%)

Detailed Information

  • Annotated literature on selected topic 25%
    • Due date - Week 6- 1 March 2019 at 5pm
    • A brief introduction of your topic (100 words), including at least 5 annotated sources
    • Each annotated source should be summarised in 100-200 words (including the reference)
    • Further information on annotated literature is available here
    • Download a template for writing your annotations from here
    • One person in each group should submit your assignment in PDF format, in the format GroupName/Number_CS4009_Annotated.pdf (e.g. Group1_CS4009_Annotated.pdf) on Sulis
    • Send a backup of your PDF assignment to gabriela.avram@ul.ie with the subject "CS4009 Assignment 1"
    • If you do not receive at least 10/25 in your annotated literature assignment, you will fail the module!
  • Presentation of design fiction idea (20%)
    • There will be presentations scheduled during the labs on 11 and 14 Mar 2019
  • Monday 11 March - 8 groups
  • Thu 14 March - 5 groups
  • Please upload your presentation to Sulis or bring it on a USB stick. Each group has 7-10 min.

Make sure to upload your slides on Sulis (one person for the whole group.) Upload a PDF with the name: <name/number of your group>DesignFictionPresentation

The slides should contain the following:

  • Title slide (a title for your design fiction, the group name/number, the names and student numbers of the students involved in preparing the work, and the bottom CS4009 and the date)
  • Introduction - what is the problem you are trying to solve (suicide prevention, heavy traffic, information and navigation for city visitors, etc); how are the things right now and what will change in 10-15 years with your amazing design in place; you can include photos, videos, sketches, quotes - anything that would illustrate the current situation.
  • Literature reviewed - main ideas from what you read: 5-6 bullet points, with correct Harvard in-text citation at the end - (<author last name> <year>)

Summarise to the bone - no bullet point can be longer than 2 lines. Use 2 slides if necessary.

  • A presentation of the solution you are envisaging, using at least a sketch or a photo . This can take 1-3 slides
  • What methods/techniques have you used so far to develop your idea? You had brainstorming - anything else? Personas, storyboards, bodystorming, sketching, role playing etc.; Use 1 slide for each, use visuals, tell us what you did, how you did it and why.
  • What are the advantages of your proposed design? 1 slide max
  • What are the main challenges? 1 slide max
  • If someone gave you 10 million euros to develop this solution tomorrow, where would you start?
  • References in correct Harvard style - check Cite It right

If you are using Zotero, go to Zotero-> Preferences -> Styles and press the <Get additional styles button>. Put University of Limerick in the Search box and add it to the list. After that, select the papers you want to add to the list , then right click on one of them. Select <Generate Bibliography from items>, make sure University of Limerick is selected on the list, then use Bibliography and Copy to Clipboard for generating the correct list of references, and the Paste them on the PPT slide.

  • The grading scheme for this (20p in total, everybody in the group gets the same grade):
    • Presentation skills - 8p
    • Quality of documentation and argument - 8p
    • Correct citations in-text and correct list of references - 4p
  • Submission of short paper design fiction 25%
    • Further details are here:
    • Due date W10: 29 March 2019 at 5pm
    • Write a design fiction scenario together with your group
    • Submit a min 2 max 4 page paper in SIG-CHI format
    • The latest ACM classification can be consulted here
    • Each paper must include an abstract, introduction, literature review (with at least 5 credible sources), case product, and discussion/conclusion section
    • Please submit your assignment in PDF format on sulis, in the format IDNumber_CS4009_paper.pdf (e.g. 10123458_CS4009_final.pdf)
    • Send a backup of your PDF assignment to gabriela.avram@ul.ie with the subject "CS4009 Paper Assignment"
  • Individual Assignment: 2 portfolio posts (30%)
    • You will be posting to your existing blogs created in the 1st year
    • One post will contain the idea of the design fiction paper, a brief description of the process and a link to the paper (PDF)
    • The other post will contain a practical element illustrating the skills you contributed to the project.
    • Due date week 12: 12 April 2019
    • List of Portfolios CS4009 AY2018/19

Design Brief

  • Go wandering in the city with your team. Try to imagine how the city could look like or function in the future due to a groundbreaking interactive technology that you are about to invent.
  • Think about things that you would like to change, challenge or make disappear. Your idea could make dangers visible, or challenge people to think differently.
  • Brainstorm on the go about potential solutions. Make some brief notes. Take pictures, take video snippets.
  • Continue with desk research. Look for relevant research ideas, technologies, images. Has it been already done?
  • Meet and discuss candidate ideas; sketch; choose the one with most potential you can agree on
  • Describe the chosen idea; find a presentation mode that would suit.
  • Organise to meet with another group and present your idea. Write down any feedback.
  • Write your own description of the idea.

Selected Topic

  • Interactivity and connections in the city and urban environments (applications of IxD technologies in urban spaces, e.g. tech for travel, internet of things applications, interactive street installations)

Suggested areas for basing your design fiction

Suggested technologies and applications for design

  • Sensors for gathering data, such as for health (skin health, heart rate), environment (temperature, humidity, sound), embodied interactions (e.g. gestures)
  • Beacons - bluetooth applications (for location aware applications, for example)
  • GPS - location aware
  • Augmented reality
  • Voice interaction
  • Projections (e.g. on-skin based, wearable, screen-based)
  • Wearable surveillance (e.g. hidden cameras, recorders, logging systems)
  • Apps and wearable extensions (e.g. sensor-based)
  • Multi-sensory approaches?

Possible applications


Readings and Videos

Week 1



Examples of design fictions that have inspired today's technologies:

Week 2

Week 3

Examples of design fictions from the Urban IXD project:

The Quantified Self
Negotiation of Space
Experiencing the Other

Week 4

Lectures and Labs

There will be a number of lectures scheduled throughout the semester, on various topics related to doing research:

Week 1

    • Lecture: Briefing on the Directed Studies module; Introduction of the topic; design fiction
    • No lab




  • Discussion of the ideas presented in the lecture:
    • Can you think of any performative interventions that involve digital technologies?
    • Have a look at Usman Haque – Mini Burble and other Usman Haque projects
  • Creating or retrieving your account on Zotero;
    • go to applications and open Zotero on your computer; go to Zotero.org and log in.
    • go to http://dl.acm.org in your browser. This is the ACM Digital Library. Now search for a paper on "urban interaction";
    • use the Zotero connector on the left side of your browser bar to add one paper you found of interest to your Zotero library; add some tags (could be the keywords in the paper); check the Notes functionality for making notes about the paper.

Week 3



  • Consultation in groups after reading one of the 4 papers below:
  1. Hannu Kukka, Anna Luusua, Johanna Ylipulli, Tiina Suopajärvi, Vassilis Kostakos, Timo Ojala From cyberpunk to calm urban computing: Exploring the role of technology in the future cityscape, Technological Forecasting and Social Change, Volume 84, 2014, Pages 29-42, ISSN 0040-1625
  2. Mara Balestrini, Yvonne Rogers, Carolyn Hassan, Javi Creus, Martha King, and Paul Marshall. 2017. A City in Common: A Framework to Orchestrate Large-scale Citizen Engagement around Urban Issues. In Proceedings of the 2017 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI '17). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 2282-2294.
  3. Sarah Gallacher, Connie Golsteijn, Lorna Wall, Lisa Koeman, Sami Andberg, Licia Capra, and Yvonne Rogers. 2015. Getting quizzical about physical: observing experiences with a tangible questionnaire. In Proceedings of the 2015 ACM International Joint Conference on Pervasive and Ubiquitous Computing (UbiComp '15). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 263-273.
  4. Joel Fredericks, Luke Hespanhol, and Martin Tomitsch. 2016. Not just pretty lights: using digital technologies to inform city making. In Proceedings of the 3rd Conference on Media Architecture Biennale (MAB). ACM, New York, NY, USA, , Article 7 , 9 pages.

In each group of 4, each person has to read one of these 4 papers. Email each other in your groups with the number/title of the paper you have chosen.

  • Putting Zotero to work- add the paper you read to your Zotero library; add your notes there as well.

Week 4



  • Choose one of these 4 papers and let your team mates know via email;
  • Read the paper and make notes: What is the paper about? Who are the authors? When was it published? What methods were used? What were the conclusions the authors drew? What was their main contribution?
  1. Hans-Christian Jetter, Sarah Gallacher, Vaiva Kalnikaite, and Yvonne Rogers. 2014. Suspicious boxes and friendly aliens: exploring the physical design of urban sensing technology. In Proceedings of the First International Conference on IoT in Urban Space (URB-IOT '14). ICST (Institute for Computer Sciences, Social-Informatics and Telecommunications Engineering), ICST, Brussels, Belgium, Belgium, 68-73.
  2. Thomas Maskell, Clara Crivellaro, Robert Anderson, Tom Nappey, Vera Araújo-Soares, and Kyle Montague. 2018. Spokespeople: Exploring Routes to Action through Citizen-Generated Data. In Proceedings of the 2018 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI '18). ACM, New York, NY, USA, Paper 405, 12 pages. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1145/3173574.3173979
  3. Jesse Blum, Martin Flintham, Rachel Jacobs, Victoria Shipp, Genovefa Kefalidou, Michael Brown, and Derek McAuley. 2013. The timestreams platform: artist mediated participatory sensing for environmental discourse. In Proceedings of the 2013 ACM international joint conference on Pervasive and ubiquitous computing (UbiComp '13). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 285-294.
  4. Nick Taylor, Loraine Clarke, and Katerina Gorkovenko. 2017. Community Inventor Days: Scaffolding Grassroots Innovation with Maker Events. In Proceedings of the 2017 Conference on Designing Interactive Systems (DIS '17). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 1201-1212.

Lab Assignment

Part 1

  • Sit together with your group mates and work in your own groups.
  • Add and make notes in Zotero on the paper you read. 10 min
  • Tell your group mates about the paper you read: 15 min
    • What was it about?
    • What methods were used in the study? (interviews, experiments, focus groups, etc.)
    • What were the main findings?
  • Take turns until every member of the group presented.
  • A few students will be randomly invited to share information about the papers read.10 min
  • Talk about your groups' idea for a design fiction. Sketch, write down things, maybe draw a mindmap. 15 min

Part 2

  • Together with your group, start a list of technologies that were deployed in the papers you read on Weeks 3 and 4. There were sensors, polling prototypes - what else? 15 min
  • Email it to kim.oshea at ul dot ie and to gabriela.avram to add them to the wiki page. Share it with the class. Try to draw an exhaustive list of technologies encountered in the papers. Also include other technologies that you have heard about or you have seen at use in an urban context. 10 min
  • Go to http://dl.acm.org or http://scholar.google.com and look for another paper to read, including as key words any of the technologies that were mentioned, together with one of the words: city, urban, civic, municipal. 15 min


  • Continue thinking about and discussing your design fiction idea with your group over the next week.
  • Check Vimeo, YouTube, Pinterest for ideas that include your application domain (mobility, place making, waste, community, etc.) and some of the technologies you considered.
  • Read one more paper and make notes on it, so that you can include it in your annotated bibliography later.

Week 5


Also see: http://codesign.mesch.io/glossary/index.htm

Technologies reported

  • Python Script
  • Smartphone application
  • online wordpress plugins.
  • MySQL database
  • Python program
  • Other open source tech
  • NodeJS server technology
  • Timestream,
  • Interactive smart boards.
  • Sensing technologies
  • Arduino and Raspberry Pi
  • Smart Citizen kit - Arduino
  • SenCity kit - Microsoft Gadgeteer
  • Urban Sensors
  • C02 sensors
  • Water depth sensors.
  • DHT22 Temperature Sensor
  • Air quality sensor
  • Temperature sensor
  • Humidity sensor
  • NO2 sensor
  • CO2 sensor
  • Light sensor
  • Sound sensor
  • Tilt sensor
  • Air quality egg
  • Moisture sensor
  • Microphone,
  • Loudspeaker,
  • LED sensors
  • Monitoring devices
  • Cameras
  • Light, Sound, Vibration, Moisture, NO2,CO & temperature sensors
  • RFID reader,
  • Bread board
  • GPS Tracking
  • Bluetooth button
  • Phones
  • computer
  • Live Sensor
  • mobile phones
  • Monitoring devices [phone data logger]
  • BinCam [camera]
  • Clock
  • Keyboard
  • Screens

  • Mapping Tools
  • Recording Technologies
  • Interactive Screens
  • Frogbox
  • Smart citizen kit
  • SenCity kit
  • Willy the Alien
  • Mood sensing box
  • Vibrator detector box
  • Duck design
  • Fairground ride sensing box
  • The Nabaztag device
  • Fukushima Wheel
  • Frogbox
  • Sensors
  • Polling prototypes
  • Voxbox
  • Interactive displays
  • Ambient displays
  • Laser Cutting
  • 3D Printing


  • Work in your groups; Take a handout of the technologies reported by the whole class and try to put them under different headings. Separate hardware from software, technologies from methods involving solely people, input devices from output devices. 15 min
  • We will have a conversation about these; We'll also touch on other technologies like AR, VR, teleportation? 10 min
  • Go back to your group and discuss your selected design fiction; what kind of technologies would it use? Are they here already? Or are they brand new? 15 min
  • Brief presentation of the draft ideas of each group - 10 min
  • Break
  • Work on your design fiction idea in your group. Remember, you are past brainstorming now- you are moving into ideation.
  • Which of the methods and techniques presented in the lecture would be appropriate? Discuss with your group. 10 min
  • Which ones do you feel best equipped for? 10 min
  • Why would people like your idea? Try to come up with pros and cons. Reformulate if it looks like there are too many cons.10 min
  • What technologies would it use again? 10 min
  • Write down your current design fiction idea individually. 10 min

Week 6


  • Invited talk: Niamh Cooney, Colin Doherty, Goran Peuc - SAP Dublin


Week 7


Getting ready for your internship Gabriela Avram

Communication Tools
Video conferencing tools
Project Management Tools
Learning new stuff

Online courses:

Creating Websites
Social media marketing
Google Alerts
Google Analytics
Wireframing- Sketch
Other handy tools


  • Portfolio review

Week 8


  • Invited lecture: Maxence Larrieu
  • Class Presentations on Monday
  • Class Presentations on Thursday

Week 9

No Lecture and No Lab on Monday- St Patrick's Bank Holiday

Thursday Lab

  • Catching up; questions

Week 10



  • Exporting bibliographies from Zotero
  • Using a template for formatting a paper
  • Publishing research work: posters, workshop papers, conference papers, journal papers

Week 11



Week 12

Groups for Labs

Group 2A Monday Lab

  • Group ACL
    • 17202825 DURKAN LOUISE
    • 17244331 WHITTY CHRISTEEN MS
    • 17207797 HIGGINS CONOR MR

  • Group 2
    • 17215943 2A MAHER LISA
    • 17230446 2A MOLONEY DAVID
    • 17206995 2A CUFFE KEVIN
    • 17197732 2A O'BOYLE KAYLEIGH

  • Group 3
    • 17187818 2B COLLINS BRIAN
    • 15171078 2A HASSETT SORCHA
    • 17210682 2A SIMONETTI DAVIDE
    • 17187966 2A SMITH DAMIAN MR

  • Group 4
    • 17216923 2A ROWE LEAH MS
    • 17239303 2A LEE ALISON MS
    • 17201217 2A KEANE CHRISTIAN MR
    • 17199441 2B KELLY EMER MS

  • Group The Bodacious Babes
    • 17222885 2A MAC GABHANN SHAUN
    • 17240328 2A O'KEEFE GEORGE

  • Group 6
    • 17220505 2B KEANE TIMOTHY MR
    • 17233321 2A GODLEY GERARD MR
    • 17215587 2A CROWE MATTHEW
    • 17228611 2B SCULLY JOSEPH MR

  • Group 7
    • 17230926 2B O'BRIEN SEAN MR
    • 17237165 2A GAFFNEY MICHAEL MR

    • 16165594 2A O'DONOVAN SEAN MR (gone?)

  • Group 11
    • 16112229 2A ASSOUNGA FRANCK
    • 15141209 2A BURKE DANIEL
    • 16232712 2A KING TIERNAN MR
    • 17224233 2B DEMPSEY AOIFE MS

Group 2B Thursday Lab

  • Group Carpool Karaoke
    • 17234905 2B GEARY JOANNE MS
    • 17241707 2B LEE CORMAC MR
    • 15146375 2B HAYES PATRICK MR
    • 16187024 2A QUILLE ROBERT MR

  • Group 5
    • 17202132 O'BRIEN CIARA
    • 17226856 MALONE PETER
    • 16155076 AUDLEY GARY
    • 17197341 MCDONALD ELLIOT

  • Group Stitch
    • 17214319 2B GOFF CAROL MS
    • 17222532 2B SMYTH LAOISE MS
    • 17238307 2B WALSH IAN MR

  • Group 9
    • 17203058 2B BRENNAN FINTAN MR
    • 17239435 2B HURLEY ROBERT MR
    • 18161812 2B ADEBAMBO AYOMIDE MS

  • Group 10
    • 15180727 2B HARTIGAN EIMEAR MS
    • 16179641 2B KENNY JASON MR
    • 14116952 2B MAHER CALEY MR
    • 16187741 2B SALAMI GBOLAHAN MR

Annotated Bibliography

Literature Review

Design fiction

  • Examples:

Portfolio links

Examples from former students

Personal tools