DIS2020

More than Human Centred Design

Performance and Design Exhibition

re|Traces of Search—Exploring Human-Software Entanglements Through the Search Engine

Erik Natanael Gustafsson, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden.
Nadia Campo Woytuk, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden.
Benoit Baudry, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden.
Paper available at the ACM digital library

re|Traces of Search probes human-software relationships by examining in detail a specific and situated action: searching on the web. This work exposes the inner workings of this human/non-human connection: the software—the keystrokes, the scripts and function calls occurring during the exchange—are revealed as a tangible artifact and interactive sonification. As well as highlighting a hidden complexity, this work touches upon questions of transparency and privacy of search engines, and to what extent our relationship with software is rooted in control rather than care.