"Situating Ubiquitous Computing in Everyday Life" Workshop at Ubicomp

A workshop I did notice at Ubicomp 2005: "Situating Ubiquitous Computing in Everyday Life: Bridging the Social and Technical Divide":

A workshop to be held at UbiComp 2005, Tokyo, Japan, 11 September 2005. Sponsored by the Knowledge Acquisition & Projection Lab @ Indiana University. Organized by Michael A. Evans, Andy Crabtree, Mike Fraser, Peter Tolmie and Rick McMullen

Submission Deadline (Extended): 18 July 2005 Acceptance Notification: 25 July 2005 Final Version: 8 August 2005 Workshop Date: 11 September 2005

*Call for Position Papers* The most profound technologies are those that disappear. They weave themselves into the fabric of everyday life until they are indistinguishable from it.” (Mark Weiser, "The Computer for the Twenty–First Century")

If we take Weiser’s vision seriously, then it is clear that the ultimate challenge for ubiquitous computing is to weave or situate new technologies into the very fabric of everyday life. Despite a number of impressive efforts developing and evaluating prototype systems, many researchers will no doubt recognize that UbiComp demonstrations are nevertheless very 'distinguishable’. Such systems have yet to disappear or become an ‘unremarkable’ feature of everyday life - this, we suggest, largely being a result of where emphasis is placed in the development of ubiquitous computing systems. Although attempts have been made to understand he ‘fabric of everyday life’ of target users, emphasis to date has primarily been placed on demonstrating theoretical principles from computer science and the capabilities of new ubiquitous technologies. Given the nascent state of the field, this has been an understandable first phase of growth. Nonetheless, with the movement of computing research away from the workplace and its diversification into novel areas of everyday life, the time is ripe for serious reflection on the nature of everyday life and its importance to the ongoing development of ubiquitous computing systems.

Further details: www.pervasive.iu.edu/~kapl/ubicomp2005/

Why do I blog this? I think this workshop raised an important question often forgotten: how can ubicomp be situated in everyday life. That's a tremendous issue: how can we engage users in using these technologies. That should indeed fits with their activities/habits/expectations/desire... easy to say but how do we actually do that?