HCI in the Wild Mêlée of Office Life : Explorations in Breaching the PC Data Store

Harper, R. and Lindley, S. and Banks, R. and Gosset, P. and Smyth, G. (2019) HCI in the Wild Mêlée of Office Life : Explorations in Breaching the PC Data Store. In: Into the Wild : Beyond the Design Research Lab. Studies in Applied Philosophy, Epistemology and Rational Ethics . Springer, Cham, pp. 73-92. ISBN 9783030180188

[thumbnail of HCIintheWildOffice]
Text (HCIintheWildOffice)
HCIintheWildOffice.pdf - Accepted Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial.

Download (634kB)


‘HCI in the wild’ was meant to be a call to get HCI investigations out of the lab into the mêlée of real life. This is of course a commendable suggestion, though begs questions about what kinds of methods and topics are suited for exploring in this mêlée as against in the lab. Claims by some experimentalists that they seek ecological validity in lab studies are largely missing the point since the thing that studies in the wild seek are essentially only those things that occur outside the lab—and hence are not things that can be replicated, modelled, or emulated. But in any case, some of those who have taken up the call for studies in the wild have taken this rather too literally—they have sought wild places, places where HCI researchers have not gone before. Needless to say this being HCI, the places in question are not often that wild, woods near Brighton, for example, street life in south Cambridge. What they ignore as they venture into these settings is the mêlée of office life, the place where the bulk of computer systems are located and the place in which, oddly enough, increasingly little HCI research gets done.

Item Type:
Contribution in Book/Report/Proceedings
Additional Information:
The final publication is available at Springer via https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-3-030-18020-1_5
ID Code:
Deposited By:
Deposited On:
29 Jul 2019 10:05
Last Modified:
15 Apr 2024 23:54