Surfacing Livingness in Microbial Displays: A Design Taxonomy for HCI

Raphael Kim, C.C. Risseeuw, E.G. Groutars, E. Karana

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedings/Edited volumeConference contributionScientificpeer-review


In recent years, there has been a notable proliferation and diversification of works in HCI, that integrate living microorganisms; an imperative lifeform dominating ecosystems of our planet. Yet despite the growing interest, there is a lack of structured lenses with which designers can strategize their processes of surfacing livingness; a material quality inherent in living artefacts with a potential to enrich user experiences and to initiate mutualistic care between humans and microorganisms. Through a systematic artefacts review and a case study on Flavobacteria, we have developed and instantiated a Taxonomy of Surfacing Livingness in Microbial Displays, consisting of six microbe-sensitive, tuneable mechanisms for human noticing of microorganisms: 1) Canvassing, 2) Marking, 3) Magnifying, 4) Translating, 5) Nudging, and 6) Molecular Programming. The taxonomy invites diverse and adaptable ways of generating and crafting microbial displays; towards overcoming microbe-specific surfacing constraints, integrating diverse stakeholders' values, and enabling nuanced address of microbial welfare.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 2023 CHI conference on human factors in computing systems
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery (ACM)
Publication statusPublished - 2023


Dive into the research topics of 'Surfacing Livingness in Microbial Displays: A Design Taxonomy for HCI'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this