The Designing Safe Living conference

Images: Women with fire masks, Priscilla Huggable Mushroom Cloud, Surveillance light

The international conference will be held at the conference centre in Lancaster University from 10th – 12th July with a variety of keynote and panel session speakers. Subjects raised include Genomics and Design, Designing Safe Citizens, Design , Body and Control, etc. To view in more detail about the topics that will be discussed check out the programme here>

Keynote speakers:

Fiona Raby (Royal College of Art, London, UK and dunneandraby designs, author of Design Noir)

Professor Lucy Suchman
(Lancaster University, UK, ‘Human-Machine Reconfigurations: Plans and Situated Actions 2nd Edition’)

Lynn Hershman Leeson (Director of ‘Strange Culture’) this will be conducted via Second Life

Benjamin H. Bratton (Director Advanced Strategies Group at Yahoo!, SCI_Arc and UCLA Design|Media Arts, author of Design and Terrorism)

Timothy W. Luke (Virginia Polytechnic University, author of ‘Vectors of Visualization’)

Sheila Jasanoff Harvard University

Patricia Clough CUNY

Workshop 5: Ear defenders:designing film sound for safe living by Annette Davison

Dr Annette Davison, Music, University of Edinburgh: BSc (City) MA (Exeter) PhD (Sheffield)

Annette’s talk discussed the subjects of eavesdropping, sound and it’s context in safe living. Film sound + music are little discussed as they are unseen. But they work hard to generate how we are able to believe what we see on the screen. Alfred Hitchcock for example did not want orchestra for his film “Lifeboat”(1944), because there is no orchestra in the sea. In 70s, sensitive rifle mikes sanitized audio surveillance as seen in the films The Conversation and Blowup.

What are the current issues of sound + audio surveillance in UK?
1) MPs and eavesdropping: people bugged at prison by police, it was not for a warrant for arrest. MPs and prison conversations had been taped
2) Wire tap intercepts in court. As evidence are admissible in court.
3) ”CCTV must not record conversations” Record the crowds of 2012 Olympics. Not between members of the public, intrusive and unjustified. It must be made clear that audio recording is taking place. Sound is public and private.

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Workshop 5: CASA SEGURA by Robert Ransick

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Robert Ransick (Media Artist and Professor of Digital Arts, Bennington College)
Casa Segura / Safe House

Robert’s project highlights various issues dealing with immigration, border control, those who cross the US/Mexico border and those who live near the border. His work  can be seen on his casasegura blog and is currently exhibited at the LAND WARS exhibition at the Te Tuhi centre for the arts in Southern Auckland.

Cross disciplinary practices are his interest: he is an artist and designer and currently the Professor of Digital Arts at Bennington College,Vermont USA . He visits various design classes and positions his work in visual and fine art context. Borrows from strategies of design. Gets students to read social science documentation. He is very sensitive to the ideas that Dunne + Raby address in their work.

Addressing Fear Neuroscience institute visit, spent time to meet neuroscientists. Trying to match up with their disciplines. Learnt about the amygdala. Part of the brain that dictates fear and response. Preconscious. Amygdala remembers the pain from when you get a bee sting, next time you see a bee you fear the bee and the heart rate goes up, adrenalin, you flee. Fear is a terrific motivator and controller.Government encourages this fear to allow emails to be read, pursue surveillance policies etc. Politics of fear: powerful in relation to how our brain works. The subject of Immigration is now mixed with and correlates to Osama bin Laden to immigrants crossing the border and the fear of another catastrophic disaster. The US and Mexicio border in the South West runs along California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas. Interested in the illegal immigrants, crossing the border, the property owners and the larger populous and how we learn about migrants and border control. Robert concentrates on how we try to help the populous to think about these things.

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Workshop 5: Truth and justice in the wake of dictatorship and armed conflict by Jose Zelaquett

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photos:Will Pollard

The Irdell Lecture is run by the Department of history and law at Lancaster University and is 15 year old lecture series for interdisciplinary scholars of history, society and law. As part of the fifth Designing Safe Living workshop dealing with Presentation, Documentation and Mediation, Jose Zalaquett was invited to speak with the IAS.

José Zalaquett is the Professor of Law at the Human Rights Centre at Chile University

José Zalaquett is probably Latin America’s foremost and most well known authority on human rights. He has taught as visiting professor at the Law Schools of Harvard University, New York University, the University of Maryland and the University of Toronto. Advocate of human rights. Head of amnesty international committees. President in American commission.Human rights missions to numerous countries. UNESCO + carter foundation. Arrested, detained and exiled in the past in his beliefs. Worlds most respected members of human rights. Field of Human rights in the world and in Chile.

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Nanonoia by Jessica Charlesworth


This project is entitled NANONOIA and was presented at the Proximities workshop in November 2007. In this presentation I will discuss its development by highlighting my process and design decisions and ending with further space for explorations.There are two phases to this project:

PHASE ONE: Influences

First phase addresses my influences, research and initial questions. The second phase further explores the complexities of my scenarios: raising more questions. My initial influence was from an article discussing the current applications of nano technologies in commercial organisations. The article discussed the future impact of hand held nano sensors that could indicate whether the parson you are sitting nxt to on the bus has flu or whether the street you are walking down has a high carbon monoxide count or the salad you are abotu to it has a bacteria that will cause food poisoning. This hyper awareness of our immediate future health raised question of paranoia + future phobias and implication this tech will have on psycho somatic disorders.

This lead to the question what of this paranoia were to escalate and begin to affect interactions within our relationships and environmen?

My visual research: detection + protection. How these products/systems already affect relationships and environments.

Acute sensitivity: what if protection/detection became biokleptic:ie borrow biological processes from immune system and manipulate them to enable physical manifestations into more meaningful signals.

Health supplement provides individual with a sixth sense by boosting and augmenting the immune system.

Could supplement provide individual with a sixth sense? Offering a new code of reference: PHYSICAL MANIFESTATION

Each physical manifestation illustrates the individual’s reaction to their surroundings. Each symbol translates into the individual’s probability of contracting a virus from certain contagions.

These illustrations created more questions: how would this biokleptic acute sensitivity be provided to an individual?

PHASE TWO: Who is the service provider?

This second phase explores further complexities of this scenario. How would a service create further implications to society? The 6sense health supplement that enhances our immune system.

Is the service publicly run, privately invested? Designed various touch points that provide further questions and future scenarios.

Would the service provider offer….?

Inductions and starter packs?

DNA tests?

Tailored treatment + applications

Could one could learn to read themselves and translate their symbols, a dictionary for themselves

A manual that offers various tips on what to do in an emergency?

(code of conduct/charter) (who and how is support structure exist in your life, subscription?)- nicorette style

Similar to diabetics, 6sense members have own inconspicuous ways to gain access to certain areas and public services. Private members clubs

Depending on location, provided with various maps identifying nearest quarantine zone (food and water and treatment safe house) (casa segura, humane borders projects)

Own individual proxemic contingency chart, Indicates minimum distance 6 sense members need to be to reduce risk to disease level.

This service provider and the various products they offer raise further implications in society and the interactions individuals have in environment and between relationships. Does it increase hypochondria cases?, somatic syndromes, obsessive compulsive disorders/phobias

What might be the propaganda poster campaign? E.g. NHS tissue. Underground politeness/terrorist warnings; use your senses

READ MORE about the future of the 6sense health supplement HERE>