People lining up to use a cool new gadget in the city? Surprise and variety in technology appropriation of multipurpose public displays

Leena Ventä-Olkkonen, Netta Iivari, Arto Lanamäki, Marko Jurmu, Hannu Kukka, Kari Kuutti, pp. 136 - 158, 




People have always used tools and technologies creatively. Technology appropriation concerns on how users adopt technologies for personal purposes. In this paper, we review the appropriation literature and explicate four varieties of this concept. Then we explore these varieties in the empirical setting of a citywide network of multipurpose interactive public displays. This network was designed to support communication among a multitude of people for a variety of purposes. We show how people used this technology in ways not captured in original design. The analysis retrospectively examines cases of appropriation of different themes. We particularly concentrate on surprising “unfaithful” appropriation and discuss unanticipated users, usages, circumstances, and design for the unanticipated. Our contribution is the scrutiny of the varieties of the appropriation concept, showing these varieties in the setting of public displays in an urban space.

keywords: Appropriation, Public displays, Urban technologies. 


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