Serious Games for Systemic Innovation
With Mr. Markus Valle-Klann, Head of Situated Computing Lab, Fraunhofer FIT
The emerging technologies of ubiquitous and wearable computing have opened up new possibilities for support beyond traditional desktop as well as mobile computing. But they have also introduced new challenges for designing supportive systems successfully. The overall complexity of networked distributed systems is growing and their interactions with people become more subtle and intricate. As a result, implications for evolving future usage patterns are becoming harder to anticipate.
In comparison with traditional ICT, all of this makes designing successful applications of these technologies and assessing both their risks and benefits more difficult. And for organizations it increases the challenge of systemic innovation considering organizational structure and processes as well as work practices in addition to the supportive technologies themselves.
As a particularly instructive case of this challenge, the LifeNet firefighter tactical navigation support system is presented. This system, developed in past and present EU research projects, is composed of a wireless sensor network, a wearable system with computing, communication and human interaction capabilities, as well as further systems for the different command levels. What makes this case interesting is that the extreme usage conditions accentuate the challenge of designing usable systems and that due to the inherent risks of the profession users tend to be skeptical and very reluctant about new technologies.
To address this design challenge the simulation and prototyping approach FireSim is introduced, consisting of a series of techniques enabling users to experience and explore the use of future technologies in authentic usage scenarios that are recreated with increasing realism. This serious games approach, recently exhibited at CeBIT 2012, builds on existing techniques in user-centered and participatory design with the objective of bringing different techniques together such that each can be put to optimal use based on its specific strengths and limitations.
Results from user studies with different European fire services are presented, demonstrating the benefit of experience-rich playful explorations of future systems for reflecting on and assessing technological options and guiding systemic innovation.
Markus Klann is head of the Situated Computing Lab at the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Information Technology FIT and doctoral candidate at the department of information systems at RWTH Aachen University. His research interests are human-computer interaction, experience prototyping, design and innovation processes, and emergency response. Klann has a diploma in computer science from the University of Hamburg.
Date: Wednesday May 23th, 2012, 10:00am
Location: Battelle bât A, auditorium ground floor
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