Exploring culture, technology, and design
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Three experts on intersections of technology and culture will visit the University of Iowa April 2 and 3 to talk imagination, collaboration, and innovation.
Anne Balsamo, Dale MacDonald, and Scott Minneman co-founded Onomy Labs, Inc., a Silicon Valley-based design company that builds interactive devices and exhibits for galleries, museums, schools, and other venues.
One project that uses Onomy'sTilty Table
Onomy’s products include the Tilty Table—a movable, table-top screen that lets users navigate maps and other large images by tilting different directions—and the Interactive Wall—a digital screen that glides across a static exhibit, displaying changing information.
Iowa’s Digital Studio for Public Humanities is sponsoring the trio’s talks, which will examine collaboration among designers, engineers, computer scientists, artists, and humanists:
- “Computer Science Challenges in Culturally-Inspired Innovation” (Monday, April 2, 12:30 p.m., 110 MacLean Hall): MacDonald, technology manager for the Annenberg Innovation Lab at the University of Southern California, will explore how the social and tech challenges that emerge from the lab’s work might reshape computer science and engineering design education.
- “Just Can’t Stop It: Confessions of a Serial Innovator” (Monday, April 2, 5 p.m., 116 Art Building West): Minneman — whose past work touches robotics, human-powered vehicles, workplace communication, and public art — will discuss the process of making ideas real, including the need to navigate environment, team dynamics, legal hurdles, and sheer luck.
- “Designing Culture: The Technological Imagination at Work” (Tuesday, April 3, 5 p.m., 240 Art Building West): Balsamo will draw on her recent book to argue that questions of culture drive technological discovery, and ongoing innovation requires taking culture seriously.
The Digital Studio for Public Humanities supports UI faculty, staff, and student projects that combine humanities research and education with technology and community engagement. Learn more on the studio’s website.