Diri – the Actuated Helium Balloon: A Study of Autonomous Behaviour in Interfaces

A case study for my PhD. Research on actuated interfaces has shown that people respond in certain socialized ways to interfaces that exhibit autonomous behaviours. We wished to explore the elements of design that drive people to regard an autonomous, interactive system as a social agent. To explore perceptions of autonomous behaviour in interfaces we created Diri – an autonomous helium balloon, used to document activity in spaces. We implemented two different technological sophistications of Diri, to compare the outcomes of our design decisions. We present our design process, technical details and evaluation workshops, concluding with implications for designing for autonomous behaviour in interfaces. VIDEO https://youtu.be/NwzptoiYJdU INSTRUCTABLE http://www.instructables.com/id/Diri-the-actuated-helium-balloon/