In Chapter 13, “Guiding Design for Waiting,” Johan Lundin & Lina

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Larsson propose a number of suggestions for design of information technology

(IT) to be used in public places. The design implications given are based on an

exploratory field study conducted in public places where people wait to travel.

The study shows that the use of technology must be negotiable and adaptable

to support use in different ways, in different contexts and to produce a possibility

for others to understand this use. The findings are arranged in three areas:

creating privacy (how people act to establish privacy in the public place),

adapting to change (how people adapt to social, spatial and temporal changes

in the environment), and appearance and activity (how people make efforts

to communicate activities to others present in the public place). Each of these

areas has aspects that affect the use of IT. Thus they should also influence the

design of IT. Based on these findings, they derive implications for design of IT

to be used in public places.

This book ends with a few concluding remarks by the editor of this book.

Overall, the editor concludes that interaction per se is something fundamental

to us as humans and therefore a natural and sometimes necessary part of many

of our everyday activities. Due to this it is not a surprise that the different

chapters in this book span across so many seemingly disparate settings. Rather,

interaction is ubiquitous and a core aspect of us as humans and, as such, it is

easy to understand why so many current attempts on supporting interaction

rely on the two most widespread and established technological infrastructures

of the modern society as mentioned in the introduction to this book, i.e., the

Internet and the mobile phone network because, as of today, a lot of social

interaction takes place on the Internet in different online forums, chat rooms,

bulletin boards, communities, news groups, discussion lists, via email discussions

or maybe as instant messaging conversations, and on the other hand, one

of the most widely adopted technologies to support human interaction in the

wild is the mobile phone, which makes sense since another core aspects of us

as humans besides our needs and willingness to interact is that we are mobile,

sometimes in motion and some other times just located at some place waiting to

catch a bus, or standing maybe in a line to a rock concert. Finally, the editor of

this book highlights the importance of understanding the temporal aspects of

the interaction landscape that these new technologies enable. Conversations

with others do not exist in a vacuum having a clear starting and stopping point.

Rather, conversations are ongoing and have both a history and a future. This

continuity of interaction should therefore always be a focal issue when designing

new technologies for the interaction society.

The editor would like to acknowledge the help of all involved in

the collation and review process of the book, without whose support

the project could not have been satisfactory completed. A further

special note of thanks goes also to all the staff at Idea Group

Inc., whose contributions throughout the whole process from inception

to the initial idea to final publication have been invaluable.

Thanks goes to all those who provided constructive and comprehensive

reviews. Special thanks also goes to the publishing team at

Idea Group Inc., in particular to Michele Rossi and Jan Travers

for keeping the project on schedule and to Mehdi Khosrow-Pour,

whose enthusiasm motivated me to initially take on this project.

A special sponsorship acknowledgement goes to the two research

projects that have co-funded this work (i.e., The Meetings/VITAL

EU-project, and the EU-funded project “CDB – Center for Digital

Business” at the Department of Informatics, Umeå University, Sweden).

I would like to thank all of the authors for their insights and excellent

contributions to this book. I also want to thank all of the people

who assisted me in the reviewing process. In addition, this book

would not have been possible without the ongoing professional

support from Mehdi Khosrow-Pour, Jan Travers and Michele Rossi

at Idea Group Inc.

In closing, I would like to thank my parents Ulf and Britt, and my

sister Marie for their encouragement throughout the years. Finally,

I would like to thank my wife, Charlotte, for always standing by my

side and for her unfailing support during the months it took to put

together this book. I couldn’t have done it without you!

Mikael Wiberg, Ph.D.

Dept. of Informatics, Umeå University, Sweden

March 2004