Design beyond the numbers: sharing, comparing, storytelling and the need for a Quantified Us

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Abstract

In this article we discuss the social side of self-tracking. Technologies that allow users to keep track of various aspects of their lives tend to focus on individual needs and goals (the Quantified Self), but as these technologies become more enmeshed with users’ lives, appropriation practices reveal a desire of users to connect to others through self-tracking. To better support these needs, we argue for an expansion of the technology and the associated scientific field toward a more socially oriented Quantified Us, that values and facilitates interpersonal communication and connection through self-tracked data. These matters are illustrated with examples from self-tracking practice, highlighting communication needs and existing workarounds associated with self-tracking. We conclude with directions for future work.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)121-135
JournalInteraction Design and Architecture(s)
Volume2016
Issue number29
Publication statusPublished - 2016

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Technology
interpersonal communication
Communication
communication
Values
Direction compound

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title = "Design beyond the numbers: sharing, comparing, storytelling and the need for a Quantified Us",
abstract = "In this article we discuss the social side of self-tracking. Technologies that allow users to keep track of various aspects of their lives tend to focus on individual needs and goals (the Quantified Self), but as these technologies become more enmeshed with users’ lives, appropriation practices reveal a desire of users to connect to others through self-tracking. To better support these needs, we argue for an expansion of the technology and the associated scientific field toward a more socially oriented Quantified Us, that values and facilitates interpersonal communication and connection through self-tracked data. These matters are illustrated with examples from self-tracking practice, highlighting communication needs and existing workarounds associated with self-tracking. We conclude with directions for future work.",
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journal = "Interaction Design and Architecture(s)",
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Design beyond the numbers: sharing, comparing, storytelling and the need for a Quantified Us. / Kersten - van Dijk, E.T.; IJsselsteijn, W.A.

In: Interaction Design and Architecture(s), Vol. 2016, No. 29, 2016, p. 121-135.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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AB - In this article we discuss the social side of self-tracking. Technologies that allow users to keep track of various aspects of their lives tend to focus on individual needs and goals (the Quantified Self), but as these technologies become more enmeshed with users’ lives, appropriation practices reveal a desire of users to connect to others through self-tracking. To better support these needs, we argue for an expansion of the technology and the associated scientific field toward a more socially oriented Quantified Us, that values and facilitates interpersonal communication and connection through self-tracked data. These matters are illustrated with examples from self-tracking practice, highlighting communication needs and existing workarounds associated with self-tracking. We conclude with directions for future work.

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