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Which clippings match 'Human Perception' keyword pg.1 of 2

Paul Pangaro: What is cybernetics?

"Cybernetics as a process operating in nature has been around for a long time ... as a concept in society has been around at least since Plato used it to refer to government.

In modern times, the term became widespread because Norbert Wiener wrote a book called 'Cybernetics' in 1948. His sub–title was 'control and communication in the animal and machine'. This was important because it connects control (a.k.a., actions taken in hope of achieving goals) with communication (a.k.a., connection and information flow between the actor and the environment). So, Wiener is pointing out that effective action requires communication.

Wiener's sub–title also states that both animals (biological systems) and machines (non–biological or 'artificial' systems) can operate according to cybernetic principles. This was an explicit recognition that both living and non–living systems can have purpose. A scary idea in 1948."

(Paul Pangaro)



1948 • achieving goals • animal and machine • biological systems • complex human goals • control and communication • cybernetic principles • cybernetics • effective action • goal-directed systems • goals • Heinz von Foerster • human perception • living systems • man machine • navigator • non-biological artificial systems • non-biological systems • non-living systems • Norbert Wiener • Paul Pangaro • Plato • steering • systems that embody goals • taking action


Liam Birtles
19 NOVEMBER 2013

Applying Heidegger's Philosophy to Design

"Heidegger's philosophy offers what is arguably the most thorough account of the process of human understanding available. Although his analysis of interpretation is useful if one is to understand activities like innovative design, it never addresses the realm of design directly. Heidegger discusses interpretation at a high level of generality and chooses his examples from interactions between people and physical artifacts, like the use of hammers by carpenters. He is concerned with the nature of understandingly being in the world. While a person's world includes conceptual and imaginative realms like design, Heidegger's examples primarily come from the world of physical artifacts which can be encountered perceptually. ...

Heidegger treats artifacts in the world the same way he would treat design artifacts on the drawing board. That is, he is not really concerned with them as physically present objects of perception. On the contrary, his main effort philosophically is to distinguish artifacts–in–use from traditional conceptions of physically–present–objects. For example, a hammer in use is not understood by the carpenter as an observed object with physical attributes, but is skillfully applied to the activities of the current situation. Furthermore, this skillful use takes place within the context of future–oriented plans and desires, such as the anticipation of the item that is under construction. This is similar to components of a design, which are skillfully arranged in terms of their relationships to other design components and within the context of the anticipated final design. Marks in a design sketch, for instance, are important for their roles within a network of significances, rather than for their physical properties as lines. Interpretation of both physical artifacts and designs is situated. ...

The notion of breakdown in action plays a rather small role in Heidegger's analysis of human understanding. Heidegger uses examples of breakdown in order to make explicit the network of references among artifacts that are only present tacitly under conditions of normal use. Yet, the notion of breakdown has been elevated to central importance in the theories that have tried to adopt Heidegger's analysis to a theory of design and to operationalize this theory for computer support. Thus, breakdown plays an important role in Schön (1985), Winograd & Flores (1986), Suchman (1987), Ehn (1988), Budde & Züllighoven (1990), McCall, Morch, & Fischer (1990), Dreyfus (1991), Coyne & Snodgrass (1991), Fischer & Nakakoji (1992).

The fact that so many writers influenced by Heidegger have focused on breakdown does not provide multiple independent support for this emphasis. ... most of these writers have been influenced by Heidegger only indirectly–either through Dreyfus or through Schön. If one looks closely at the discussions of breakdown in Dreyfus and Schön, one can note an ambiguity in whether they are speaking about a (ontological) breakdown in the network of references or a (practical) breakdown in action. Dreyfus is certainly aware of the ontological role of breakdown, but he is concerned to make his presentation acceptable to an American audience, trained in the rationalist tradition. For the sake of concreteness, he uses examples that stress the breakdown in action. Schön is also aware of the ontological ramifications, but he has couched his discussion in terms of action (e.g., knowing–in–action, reflection–in–action), so it often seems that his examples of breakdown exemplify breakdowns in action rather than breakdowns in situated understanding. Given that it is easier to operationalize breakdowns in action than breakdowns in situated understanding, it is not surprising that people interested in producing practical results from Dreyfus or Schön's theories would tend to emphasize the action–oriented reading of the ambiguous discussions."

(Gerry Stahl, 5 January 2004)


action-oriented reading • Adrian Snodgrass • Anders Morch • anticipation • artefacts-in-use • being-in-the-worldbreakdown • breakdown in action • breakdown in the network of references • breakdowns in action • breakdowns in situated understanding • carpenter • conceptual domain • concreteness • current situationdesign artefactsdesign innovation • design sketch • design theoryDonald Schon • drawing board • Fernando Floresflow • Gerhard Fischer • Gerry Stahl • hammer • Heinz Zullighoven • Hubert Dreyfushuman perception • human understanding • innovative design • knowing-in-action • Kumiyo Nakakoji • Lucy Suchman • Martin Heidegger • nature of understanding • network of references • network of significances • normal use • objects of perception • Pelle Ehn • philosophy of design • physical artefacts • physical attributes • physical properties • physically present • physically-present-objects • rationalist tradition • Raymond McCall • reflection-in-action • Reinhard Budde • Richard Coynesituated construction of realitysituated knowledgessketching ideas • skillful use • Terry Winogradtheory of design


Simon Perkins
03 MARCH 2013

The trouble with Kant's spatial metaphor

"In consequence of this revolutionary assertion Kant states that: 'Space is not an empirical concept which has been derived from outer experiences.' (B/38) On the contrary: '…it is the subjective condition of sensibility, under which alone outer intuition is possible for us.' (A/26; B/42)

In other words, Kant asserts that space (and time) are not objective, self–subsisting realities, but subjective requirements of our human sensory–cognitive faculties to which all things must conform. Space and time serve as indispensable tools that arrange and systemize the images of the objects imported by our sensory organs. The raw data supplied by our eyes and ears would be useless if our minds didn't have space and time to make sense of it all. ...

Kant's view of space (and time) is the groundwork of his Critique [of Pure Reason], However the inseparable bond he claimed between geometry and the nature of space serves to undermine his case rather than support it. ...

When Kant refers to geometry, he must mean Euclidean geometry, since Non–Euclidean geometry, the brainchild of the 19th Century, was unknown to him. Hence space, in Kant's philosophical system must conform to Euclidean geometry. Norman Kemp Smith, in his Commentary on the Critique, remarked that for Kant '…space in order to be space at all, must be Euclidean.'

Space, in Euclidean Geometry, is a concept which is independent of the attributes of our human minds and senses. The word Geometry is derived from Greek – geo 'earth', and metron 'to measure', namely 'earth measurement'. With such semantic–conceptual roots its hardly conceivable that Euclid regarded Geometry as divorced from an objective independent space."

(Pinhas Ben–Zvi, 2005, Philosophy Now)

Ben–Zvi, P. (2005). "Kant on Space." Philosophy Now, January/February 2005(49).


cartographic metaphor • Critique of Pure Reason • empirical concept • Euclidean geometryeyes and earsgeometryGottfried Leibniz • human minds • human perception • human senses • human sensory-cognitive faculties • Immanuel KantIsaac Newtonlogical-analytical paradigmmetaphors of reality • nature of space • Non-Euclidean geometry • Norman Kemp Smith • noumena • noumenon • objective independent space • objective knowledgeobjective realityobjective world • outer experiences • philosophical system • self-subsisting realities • semantic construct • sensory organs • space and timespatial metaphorsubjective conditiontime


Simon Perkins
24 JUNE 2012

International Journal of Design: peer-reviewed and open-access

"The International Journal of Design is a peer–reviewed, open–access journal devoted to publishing research papers in all fields of design, including industrial design, visual communication design, interface design, animation and game design, architectural design, urban design, and other design related fields. It aims to provide an international forum for the exchange of ideas and findings from researchers across different cultures and encourages research on the impact of cultural factors on design theory and practice. It also seeks to promote the transfer of knowledge between professionals in academia and industry by emphasizing research in which results are of interest or applicable to design practices."

(International Journal of Design)



affective design • animation • approaches to design • architectural design • computer applications in design • cultural factors on design • design fieldsdesign industrydesign journaldesign management • design methodologies • design practicedesign practicesdesign professionalsdesign researchdesign research journal • design strategy and management • design theoryemotional designergonomic design • ergonomics and perceptions in design • game designglobalisationglobalisation and localisationhuman perception • IJDesign • impact of cultural factors on design theory and practice • industrial designinterface designInternational Journal of Design • journal of design • journal of design research • kansei • kansei engineering • localisation • open-access journal • peer-reviewed journalresearch papers • social-cultural aspects of design • theory and practiceurban designvisual communicationvisual communication design


Simon Perkins

Visuo-spatial structuring of non-geographic data

"Maps, as metaphors of reality, may be seen as a natural extension of the organizing principle of human perception––albeit a facet restricted to the spatial percepts. The use of spatial metaphor to define relations between abstract objects or between real–world objects represented in an abstract, hypothetical, space, is so common in digital 'environments' or on the computer 'desktop' that it often goes unrecognized. Such metaphors are too many to be addressed by this paper, which restricts its survey to those commonly found in a cartographic context."

(John L. Old, 2002)

L. John Old (2002). "Information Cartography: Using GIS for visualizing nonspatial data", proceedings of the ESRI International Users Conference.


abstract information spaces • abstract objectsabstractionCartesian • Cartesian coordinate system • cartographic metaphorcartographychart • computer desktop • conceptual spacecoordinate systemcyberspacedatadata visualisationdigital environments • document space • GISgraphic representationhuman perception • hypothetical • information cartographyinformation spaceinformation spacesmapmetaphormetaphors of reality • non-spatial data • orderingreal-world objectsrepresentationspacespatial • spatial data • spatial metaphor • structure information • visual representationvisualisation • visualising • visuo-spatial structuring of information


Simon Perkins

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