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Interactive design research experiment

Spring 2008


In collaboration with Adam Guzman

The Third Object is a working interactive design research experiment that plays with the social relationships between tweens and media inside their homes. The Third Object is a pillow-like device with embedded sensors that is made with bright colors and soft materials to signify a cuddly friend. This device is more like a mischievous pet as it alienates the television and seeks the human touch.


Placed in a families home, the Third Object would turn the television on and off in order to gain attention. This interruption can be annoying, especially during American Idol, but in order to gain control again a family member would have to hug the pillow. When the hug was released, the object went back to it's nefarious ways. It's character is a little evil, but it had the family not getting mad at the object, but rather at each other as they looked for ways to appease the pet.


The Third object is the second iteration is this type of experiment. The first was a two person device which required both participants to move, bend jump and punch at the large pillow like object to adjust the volume or change the channels of a television. How can the interaction amongst families be altered? Can the spirit of the tween be embodied in a remote control? Can a hug change everything?