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Arca: IxDA 2024 Interaction Awards Finalist

Submitted on April 15, 2024 - 10:21am
Arca, 2024 Interaction Awards Finalist
Arca, 2024 Interaction Awards Finalist

As part of a multi-year design research project, Arca is a design prototype for a more inclusive, transparent, and privacy-enhancing smart home camera by IxD Professor James Pierce and a team of student design researchers at Material Interactions Lab. On April 15, Arca was announced as one of the 26 projects that make up the 2024 Interaction Awards Finalists. 

The IxDA's Interaction Awards are considered one of the top interaction design competitions. They honor design craft, leadership, and innovation–recognizing excellence in Interaction Design across domains, channels, environments, and cultures. The finalists and winners in each of the six categories are selected by an international jury. Arca was submitted to the "Connecting" category and is listed next to non-student finalist, Google, for their work on dual display translation.

Project Team

  • Principal Investigator, Design + Research Lead: James Pierce
  • Interaction + Visual Design: Lian Bensaadon, Faith Ong, Burke Smithers, and Hope Terpilowski
  • Industrial Design: Ann Lai and Cole Young
  • Physical Prototyping: Chongjiu Gao, Wayne Jiang, and Sergio Medina
  • Research: Robyn Anderson and Claire Weizenegger

About the Project

Arca: An inclusive, privacy-enhancing smart home camera for you and your extended household

Arca was designed to address the experiences of neighbors, guests, domestic workers and other bystanders who interact with and are impacted by smart cameras. On its face, Arca is a design prototype for a more inclusive, transparent, and privacy-enhancing smart home camera. But Arca is only partially a solution. It is also a research tool for investigating bigger problems.

As part of a multi-year design research project funded by the National Science Foundation, Arca investigates tensions, trust, and tradeoffs with smart devices and surveillance. The more general problem motivating the design of Arca is that devices with cameras, microphones, and other sensors impact the privacy of people nearby. Smart home security cameras like Amazon’s Ring Doorbell and Google’s Nest Cams exemplify this issue. These products are used deliberately and incidentally to surveil family members, roommates, guests, neighbors, domestic workers, and passersby.

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