top of page
data enabled purp.png
Data Enabled Design


For this design exploration, we followed a data enabled design approach as laid out in Data Enabled Design by Janne van Kollenburg and Sander Bogers. As summarized by the authors, “data enabled design is a situated design approach that uses data as creative material when designing for intelligent ecosystems”. This meant that we first collected various types of data from our initial participant and then used the data to inspire our design direction. This approach contrasts with a more commonly followed approach of first developing a concept and using data collection to test or verify design decisions.


Through a set of three situated data collection probes, we found that student homes were high in volatile organic compounds (dust). Our final probe focused on reducing airborne dust levels by giving students easy access to real time dust data. The user can be prompted to clean and advised on which cleaning instrument to use. Movement sensors will be placed on the different cleaning instruments which can register the intensity and duration of the cleaning process and can provide real time feedback. The modular approach can adapt to different home environments and cleaning styles. By looking at the airborne particles before and after the cleaning has been done and particularity at their size. The systems can learn which cleaning instrument to suggest to improve the air quality. The system strives to increase the perceptual cleanness of a house by prompting the right kind of cleaning instrument.

Competency Areas Built

  • Technology + Realization

  • Math, Data + Computing

  • Design + Research Processes

Grade: 7




As a designer, but also on a more personal level, I have been growing concerned that we are designing humans out of our own experiences. I feel all too often that designs seem to have been created inside of a sterile, Utopian bubble. When I initially read about the data-enabled design approach I felt that it articulated what I was missing in my current design process. While I already try to understand the context I am designing for and the people who will eventually be influenced by what I make, I often feel that I rely too much on intuition which does not read well in a report.

bottom of page