Google as Library or Neutral Source of Information? Perhaps neither…

Siva Vaidhyanathan has been engaged in a lengthy discussion regarding Google's recent decision to slow down their Google Print Library project. Much of the conversations have centered on whether Google should be considered a library. This response from Eileen Snyder,…

Human-Centered Design Considered Harmful

I recently came across Donald Norman's latest essay "Human-Centered Design Considered Harmful". In it, he challenges us to criticize the "human-centered" design paradigm, and offers an "activity-centered" design program as an alternative:Human-Centered Design has become such a dominant theme in…

Need for Value-Sensitive Design of Fingerprinting Systems at Disney

Ed Felton discusses issues of privacy, price discrimination, and identification related to Disney World's reported use of fingerprinting (some say its only finger/hand geometry) to make sure people aren't selling their multi-day passes to third parties. Prof. Felton questions whether…

Emerging need for “values in design”

I've returned from the CEPE and SPT conferences in The Netherlands motivated to increase my advocacy for the "values in design" perspective for understanding the social, political and ethical implications of technology. At CEPE, the theme was "Ethics of New…

Media Ecology & Values in Design: A Combined Approach to Understanding the Biases of Media Technology

I will presenting my paper "Media Ecology & Values in Design: A Combined Approach to Understanding the Biases of Media Technology" at the 6th Annual Convention of the Media Ecology Association at Fordham University today. The abstract:In recent years, a…

Value Implicaitons of Nanotechnology

While presenting at the AAAS Science and Technology in Society Graduate Conference this past weekend, I met Ruben Rodriques, a Political Science grad student from Northeastern University. Ruben is a researcher at the Nanotechnology and Society Research Group, an exciting…

RFID Passports & the Need for Values in Design

Prof. Ed Felten has an excellent post on the RFID-enabled passports debate, criticising the decision to use RFID (contactless) technology rather than a more secure contact technology, such as smart card standards.His closing statements struck me:It seems that the decision…

How to Make Traffic Cameras Respect Privacy

LawMeme links to a paper suggesting a cryptographic scheme to make traffic cameras that respect driver privacy:The basic idea is to replace cameras that snap pictures of license plates with EZ-Pass style transponders. On detecting a violation, the traffic enforcement…

HUMANIST: HUMAN centered design for Information Society Technologies

An ACM TechNews article pointed me to AIDE (Adaptive Integrated Driver-vehicle InterfacE), a European initiative to integrate information and communication technology into cars to improve safety. America's version of this program is the Vehicle Infrastructure Integration (VII) initiative, which is…