Jeffrey Bardzell Indiana University (version: August 2018) [Background: This is a handout for MS HCI/d students that I’ve been iteratively working on for a decade or so. Given the recent interest in this topic–see, e.g., howtocrit.com–I’ve decided to make it publicly available.] Introduction As both design practitioners and everyday citizens, we all critique. We do…

Read more Handout: How to Do Design Critique

In a 2017 paper, Forlizzi, Koskinen, Hekkert, and Zimmerman called for a “divorce” between “pragmatic” and “critical” threads of “constructive design research” or CDR. At DIS 2018, they have a workshop around the theme of the paper. (Full disclosure: they invited me and my frequent coauthor Shaowen Bardzell to co-organize it, which we would have…

Read more Design Researchers Need a Shared Program, Not a Divorce

Why do we as researchers turn away from accepted knowledge, theory, and/or research? I don’t mean rejecting a given paper or objecting to a presentation. I am referring to categorically rejecting a whole knowledge practice, on account that it uses some method or epistemology or (fill in the blank) that one doesn’t like. This turning…

Read more Why We Turn Away

In this month’s Interactions magazine, there is an article I feel ambivalent about. It is Gaver and Höök’s “In Search of the Elusive CHI Design Paper“. I am ambivalent because there is much that I agree with and support, but at the same time some of its language–and practices it seems to support that I…

Read more Should the critical-interpretavist researchers of CHI leave the design subcommunity?

If I am right that HCI and neighboring fields will increasingly rely on the essay as a means of scholarly contribution and debate in the future, then it follows that the construction, articulation, and criticism of intellectual positions will become increasingly important. In Humanistic HCI, we talk about the essay, the epistemic roles of positions,…

Read more Critiquing Scholarly Positions

I spoke to some colleagues about my earlier post, The Criterial Knowledge Argument for Research Through Design, who are themselves experts in research through design [EDIT: the researchers in question are Jodi Forlizzi and John Zimmerman]. While these colleagues were generally sympathetic to the claim that art and design can contribute to knowledge in general and even…

Read more The “Knowledge as a By-Product of Artistic Practice is Still Not Research” Objection to My “Criterial Knowledge” Post