Observation of a piece of public technology.

For this exercise, we had to pick a piece a public interactive technology used by multiple people and observe how it is used and how the "user" behave when they are using it. I chose the intercom, which I believe is an interesting piece because it connects the public and the private space together with just one purpose of providing information and gives notice that somebody is waiting outside of a particular place.

The interaction between the inside user and the outside user is actually very short, maybe less than 30 seconds on average and in some cases can last less than some of the user (normally the outside user) finishes the first word.

Technically the intercom can have different inputs and outputs but commonly they have microphones and speakers for audio inputs and outputs, an outside camera, an inside display and buttons to release the door locks.

The behavior of the users seems to be spontaneous and natural, each user is aware of the aim of the "machine". It is interesting that even the outside user may know about the existence of a camera, mostly all of them are not looking at straight towards it, fortunaltey, that is not an obstacle for the inside user to know who is on the other side of the door.

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Please pass the disqus shortname