Posted on October 27th, 2010 at 5:51 PM by Wan
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Brunei at a Glance from Wan Harris on Vimeo.

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Posted on September 21st, 2010 at 1:01 AM by Wan
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Recently, I had the opportunity to conduct an interview with the Apple iPhone users.  The main purpose of this interview is to explore the user’s interest and understand on challenges, frustrations and success of using such a device.  According to Wikipedia (2010), “Apple has dominated 15% of Smartphones stakeholders and continues to be a threat to other Smartphones mobile market”. iPhone sales trend continue to increase as shown in figure 1. In the same way, Gartner forecasted Apple’s iOS will have a peak market share of 17.1 percent in 2011 as shown in figure 2. Contrary to these findings, a principal analyst, Leach (2010), states “Apple iPhones will remain above Android due to its unique user experience, one that consumers still find engaging and easy to use”.

(THE FOLLOWING VIDEO FOOTAGE CONTAINS CERTAIN PARTS THAT VIEWERS MAY FIND DISTURBING)

Figure 1: iPhone sales worldwide.


(Wikipedia, 2010)

Figure 2: Global Market Share for Smartphones 2009-2014

Hence, I had came up with a few sets of interview questions for iPhone’s users listed as below:

  • Why did you choose the iPhone?
  • Describe your feelings about owning an iPhone?
  • What is it that most attracted you to the iPhone over other options that are available?
  • What is your experience of using the iPhone?
  • How much time do you spend on your iPhone? Is it less or more than the time you would spend with a phone if you didn’t have an iPhone?
  • Do you use social networking? Do you use it on the iPhone, and why?
  • Is there something you don’t like about the iPhone?
  • Have your social relationships changed since you got the iPhone? Why?
  • In the future would you purchase another iPhone?
  • Do you have any suggestions to people who make the iPhone or use the iPhone?

The above questions were chosen because they are a good mix of technology related issues that can lead to more in-depth conversations about the symbolism of an iPhone. It is evident that there is a certain level of social and economic stigmas that are attached to owning a particular piece of technology. In the case of the iPhone, many people believe its owners are trendy and young. I wanted to see if this was actually true or if it was a clever marketing scheme that was put out by Apple. Another aspect of the iPhone I wanted to cover was its role in either aiding or decreasing certain types of online activities such as tweeting, sending messages via Facebook and other social media sites. The main thing I wanted to ensure was that I conducted a well rounded interview rather than one which focused heavily on just the technology side of the I-phone. I believe the iPhone symbolizes much more than a simple phone. It has become the symbol of our generation thus making it imperative to study its ins and outs in greater detail.

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Posted on September 15th, 2010 at 6:53 AM by Wan
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Last fortnight, I chose to observe my friend’s very modern kitchen, equipped with the newest high tech devices. The types of devices that existed in the kitchen included: an intelligent oven by TMIO (see Figure 1), an LCD TV kitchen system and Action Fresh Blue Technology.

TMIO is an acronym for Tonight’s Menu Intelligent Oven. My initial reaction to the newly, remodeled kitchen was that it did not look like a kitchen at all but more like an open entertainment space. Instead of a table, it consisted of a black countertop, bar stools and an overall sleek and modern design. To clarify, the TMIO intelligent oven doubles as a refrigerator and oven and can be controlled by cell phone or the internet. Regardless of where you are, you can login or call the devices call center and control when you want to start cooking your food, at what temperature, method and many more. If you decide to stop cooking the food, the oven can convert back to refrigerator mode so there is no waste. The LCD TV kitchen system by Phillips was equipped with an iPod and television monitor, all connected to the internet via a wireless connection. Lastly, the Action Fresh Blue Technology consisted of a fruit bowl with a blue light around it to ensure freshness and keep out bacteria.

Figure 1: TMIO – An Intelligent Oven


(TMIO n.d.)

The most important aspect of this observation came in the form of comparison. I was very interested in observing how vastly different the modern kitchen was in contrast to kitchens that were as little as ten years old. When people think about technology, they automatically think computers and the internet. By choosing the kitchen, I wanted to observe how technology could impact the most basic and everyday actions. I wanted to stay away from observing someone in a context where technology was expected, that is a home office and in a context where it was more unexpected. Many people do not realize that technology impacts every aspect of our lives in the office and outside the office too.

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