Time: Monday 15 September 2014 at 15:00 - 17:00
Teachers: Elina Eriksson () , Daniel Pargman ()
Student groups: CMETE_4, TMETM_META_1, TMETM_METB_1, TMETM_METC_1, TMETM_METD_1, TMMTM_1, TMMTM_2
First-order effects of ICT and then Obsolescence
Lecturer: Daniel Pargman
Guest lecturer: Christian Remy
Content: The first part of the lecture will concern first-order effects. In terms of direct, first-order effects of ICT, nothing positive can really be said in regards to their effect on the environment. We have to mine minerals to build them (Wägner) and these minerals will over time and by necessity become more scarce and expensive to acquire (Bardi). Besides mineral extraction, production and disposal furthermore have negative effects on citizens and ecosystems who often ”happen” to be located in poorer parts of the world (Cramer). One of the places where we ship our e-waste (old computers, routers, smartphones etc.) to have them disassembled and recycled is Pakistan (Umair and Anderberg). This all is pretty bad, but, are there any alternatives (Raghavan and Hasan)?
The second part of the lecture provides an overview of how Sustainable HCI research can address obsolescence, focusing on the interaction between user and device in the design of consumer electronics. After a short introduction into the general topic of obsolescence, a framework for obsolescence-related solutions from the field of Sustainable HCI is presented, accompanied by examples for how to realize some of the concepts in design practice.
About: Daniel Pargman is Assistant Professor in Media Technology at the KTH School of Computer Science and Communication. His research interests concerns social media, virtual communities, Internet culture, sustainability and resource challenges. He is a member of the steering committee for the KTH VINN Excellence Center for Sustainable Communications (CESC).
Christian Remy is a PhD Student at the People and Computing Lab at the University of Zurich. His research interests are in Sustainable HCI and Ubiquitous Computing, in particular how Sustainable Interaction Design can help us tackle issues of e-waste and obsolescence of consumer electronics.
First order effects:
Instead of reading the paper, you should watch this 10-minute long presentation of the paper "Scarce metals as raw materials for ICTs: Do we care enough?" by P. Wägner and R. Widmer (2013). The paper was presented at the first international conference on ICT for sustainability (ICT4S) which was held in Zürich 2013. For some reason, the sound disappears during the last minute of the video (sorry for that).
Bardi, Ugo. "The universal mining machine." The Oil Drum (2008).
Cramer, B. W. (2012). Man’s need or man’s greed: The human rights ramifications of green ICTs. Telematics and Informatics, 29(4), 337-347.
Umair, S. and Anderberg, S. (2011). "E-waste imports and informal recycling in Pakistan - A multidimensional governance challenge".
Raghavan, B. and Hasan, S. (2012). "Macroscopically sustainable networking: An Internet quine". International Computer Science Institute report, TR-12-010.
Remy and Huang: Addressing the Obsolescence of End-User Devices: Approaches from the Field of Sustainable HCI. In: Hilty, L.M., Aebischer, B. (eds.) ICT Innovations for Sustainability. Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing 310, Springer International Publishing (2014, in press)