Ambient Intelligence

What could go wrong?


Project Type: BArch Thesis

Advisors: Yuvraj Agarwal, Joshua Bard, Sarah Rafson

In Collaboration with: CMU Synergy Lab


The Internet of Things (IoT) is rapidly growing as a market for consumer electronics and integrated sensors. With the adoption of ubiquitous computing becoming more prevalent, the ecosystem of IoT is becoming increasingly complex and changing the way we interact with the built environment.  As the networked-devices constantly collect data ranging from temperature, to sound, to video feeds about a physical space, computers can learn from these data points and start to anticipate human needs to make occupants’ physical experience more comfortable and frictionless. What could go wrong?

My thesis investigates the values and risks that this embedded technology can bring to the physical space, the occupants, and the architecture profession. In particular, I explore how successful synthesis and representation of data in space can increase people’s understandings about the environment, provide valuable analytics for space optimization, and inform future design decisions. Such affordance will be created through my design of two digital platforms, mobile and desktop, which visualize aggregated sensor data collected in Tata Consultancy Service (TCS) Hall to provide insights about the occupant activities over time.

Despite the value that this technology brings — such as maintenance and space optimization — my research explores issues of privacy and security. Specifically, how do privacy concerns and strategies change human behaviors and expectations, and how might the architecture profession adapt to this new paradigm of digital and physical symbiosis?

More Details To Come!