The discussion

on personal information

Information visualization of issues related to the future of technologies that imply personal information as a source of value for the user and the service.

Researching on the use of personal information

Outcomes of PhD research on the consequences of the use of personal information in digital interactive connected solutions

In a context where the development of data-based technologies and systems opens new domains for the design of interactive and responsive solutions, the management of personal information has become a significant issue. It’s a critical concern for both the user’s management, and the designed system’s one. The research aims to investigate on the use personal information as signifiers that contribute to the creation of the meaning. The initial purpose is to individuate the issues that the use of personal information raises in the form of impacts on individuals and society. Then the investigation on the impacts leads to the creation of tools to support the design process introducing critical thinking so to help designers in creating responsible and robust solutions. The different information visualizations reported here are some of the outcomes of the research conducted. They have been realized in different stages of the research and with different purposes.



PhD research

Politecnico di Milano – sposnored by TIM S.p.A.

Dissertation Title

Personal Interaction Design: Introducing in the Design Process the Discussion on the Consequences of the Use of Personal Information

Research Team

Supervisor: Professor Margherita Pillan

Researcher and designer: Laura Varisco

Visualizing the discussion on personal information in online content

In the following visualization you see the results of a scraping, processing, analysis and visualization of data gathered from online sources. This type of data is used as a source of knowledge and understanding of the current situation and the possible envisioned future regarding the use of personal information in connected services and system as they impact on the society and the perception of individuals.

Technologies as envisioned by science fiction narratives

In this visualization you see data gathered from the analysis of science fiction narratives organized in 8 Ethic-oriented Reference Scenarios as envisioned futures represented in movies. These scenarios are seen as a representation of current hopes and fears of the society regarding the future of technologies that imply personal information.

The 8 scenarios are divided in 3 main groups:

  1. On self -reflection/self-perception: Perfect Humanity | Pervasive awareness | Mnemonic
  2. On machine choice/control: Super Monitor | Automation Box | Human Behavior Computer
  3. On alternative space/identity: Stargate | Avatar

Technologies as envisioned by science fiction narratives

This visualization report information collected from current news on the topic of the use of personal information for the Perfect Humanity ERS mentioned above. It aims at formalizing the issues related to the consequences of the use of personal information on the individual and society on different ‘impact layers’: i) the perception of self; ii) the performing of actions and behaviors; iii) the interpersonal relationships and roles; iv) the social agency and contribution.

Stimulating critical thinking

Information visualization as a tool for design

This visualization has been used during design courses as a support for the fostering of discussion on the topic during the design process.