Broadly my interests are in social science approaches to studying and developing new technologies, in particular enjoyable technology for activities such as games, tourism and music. Our current research is funded from a variety of sources included Vinnova, SSF, Nissan Research, EU, SRA/TNG.
The focus of my own research work has been on the details of engagement with technology using ethnographic and video methods. This work is motivated from an ethnomethodological/Wittgensteinian position, but I also attempt a positive engagement with contemporary social theory (such as in my recent work on mobility, and maps).
I have spent considerable time examining existing leisure practice, new technologies for leisure, and trials of systems in use in real settings. Studies of game playing, tourism and sport, have been used to design support for new leisure activities – such as mixed-reality museum visiting, mobile collaborative tourism and augmented-reality video games. In turn studies of these systems in use help us learn lessons about the leisure itself as an activity. This work was summarized in my MIT Press book “Enjoying Machines”. Since then I have had a particular interest in the use of smartphones and how they have become weaved into everyday life and interaction. Most recently I have become interested in how autonomous cars can work and interaction with their drivers, and the future opportunities for the development of speech and conversational systems.