The two purposes of Human-Data Interaction

I have just published this short position paper for the Human-Data Interaction through Design workshop which I will be attending at the CHI ’21 conference. In the paper I outline the two very different reasons why people need to interact with data, which are shown in the diagram below (click to view a larger version).

The first is Personal Data Control, which you need in today’s data-centric world in order to see your data and how it is used so that you can hold companies to account and gain agency within your own digital life.

The second is Life Information Exploration, which allows you to reflect over what the data tells you about your life, in order to improve yourself and get personal benefits.

These two purposes serve different human needs, bring different benefits, and lead to different designs and different applications of the HDI concepts of agency, negotiability and legibility.

The two distinct purposes for human data interaction – click to view at full-size.

The 2-page PDF paper – a very easy read! – is available in context at the workshop’s Accepted Papers page [number 13] or directly via this link.


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