FRANK

master project \ interaction design

FRANK is an interactive material that explores, through the use of 3D printing technologies and magnetic actuation, the possibilities of designing for more expressive surfaces, demonstrating how shape-changing materials may revolutionize the world of interactive products and the way we experience these everyday interactions. This project has been developed together with an amazing team (comprising Davide Amorim Nogueira, Alex de Ruiter, Minerva Loos and myself) for the course of Interactive Materiality.

FRANK stands for me as the perfect example of what it means to design for an experience beyond a product. By embedding sensors, actuators and a microcontroller in this design, we were able to program FRANK so that its behavior would respond to the user’s input, envisioning the enhancement of a stronger emotional connection between the user and a product, through the physical senses.

FRANK_prototype.jpg

frank’s anatomy

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final course prsentation

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frank’s assembly

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user interaction

This project allowed me to understand to what (virtually, limitless) extent creativity and aesthetics can be a core factor applied to interaction design, when designing for multimodal sensorial experiences. Throughout this course I was able to touch with hands-on experiences how technology can physically and emotionally impact human life in its everyday and how this potential can be uncovered through a conscious, holistic experiential design. It personally represents one of the most challenging but successful projects I developed within my master’s studies, thanks to the collaboration with such a perfectly balanced team covering all necessary areas of expertise to make this envisioned interaction become reality.

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FRANK was presented at the 13th ACM International Conference on Tangible, Embedded and Embodied Interaction (TEI 2019) as part of the Student Challenge, for which it won two awards for “Best Implementation” and “Attendee’s Choice”. We believe that in the future FRANK could be further developed to support human-computer interaction and emotional connection into more specific contexts and applications.