Today design has come to constitute a dominant discourse of innovation and social change. Within the academy, design has infiltrated not only the arts, where it has had considerable influence and longevity, but also departments of engineering and business where it promotes widespread forms of economic development and entrepreneurship. This narrative of empowerment through commerce brings with it underlying disjunctures between design’s rhetorics of plurality and the power structures design tends to reinforce. In this talk I challenge design’s prevailing paradigm to foreground situated histories always present but too often suppressed. I focus on one particular story of collaborative manufacturing where public narratives render the work of women technicians invisible. Revealing legacies of practice elided by contemporary technology cultures, this talk reminds HCI scholars that worlds of handwork and computing, or weaving and space travel, are not as separate as we might imagine them to be.
Daniela K. Rosner is an Assistant Professor of Human Centered Design & Engineering at the University of Washington (UW). Rosner’s research investigates the social, political, and material circumstances of technology development, with an emphasis on foregrounding marginalized histories of practice, from maintenance to needlecraft. Her work has been supported by multiple awards from the U.S. National Science Foundation, including an NSF CAREER award. She is the author of several articles on craft and technoculture, including “Legacies of craft and the centrality of failure in a mother-operated hackerspace,” Journal of New Media & Society, 2016 and “Binding and Aging,” Journal of Material Culture, 2012. Her forthcoming book examines entanglements of design and critical inquiry (MIT Press). Rosner earned her Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley. She also holds a B.F.A. in Graphic Design from the Rhode Island School of Design and an M.S. in Computer Science from the University of Chicago. Rosner is the editor of the “Design as Inquiry” forum for Interactions Magazine, a bimonthly publication of ACM SIGCHI.