Twittermat was designed as a provocative object, to critique the always connected condition that pervades our relationship to technologically enhanced objects. Linked to the Internet, Twittermat provides a global dialogue in real-time, an example IoT (Internet of Things) object. Countering yoga as an activity that induces calm on the body, the mat disrupts the experience by constantly communicating with Twitter and vocalising tweets on trending topics. Using sensors that respond to pressure, the body becomes the vehicle for information overload that triggers an auditory cacophony.

This piece provides commentary on contemporary issues; formulating critical design scenarios to question our reliance on gadgets, technology and networked applications. Dunne (2008) traces a history of provocative design research from the 1960’s onwards for creating positions that focus on the “expressive and linguistic possibilities of new materials and surfaces” (Dunne, 2008). The Twittermat prototype reflects on issues around material fabrication, craft, design and audio.

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Dunne, A., 2008. Hertzian Tales: Electronic Products, Aesthetic Experience, and Critical Design. Cambridge, Mass.; London: MIT Press.