‘Investigating the potential of sensory augmentation to bridge the sensory gap between deaf and hearing.’
Michel Witter is a researcher within the Situated Art and Design research group and a tutor at the Communication & Multimedia Design programme at Avans University of Applied Sciences in Breda.
Stemming from his background in technical computer science and digital art, Michel Witter’s practice is situated in the intersection between art and technology. In the early 1990s he experimented with Internet technology at the SCAN / Media-GN institute in Groningen. He was also involved in some of the first e-commerce websites in the Netherlands.
Michel developed education for years at various institutions in the field of multimedia. He has been a tutor at the Communication & Multimedia Design programme since 2002, and teaches information design, interaction and accessibility for a variety of media.
In 2016, during his master’s in Media Innovation, he immersed himself in designing wearable technology from the point of view of pure experience. Michel has begun a PhD research into situated design methods that enable interaction designers in designing effective interfaces for sensory augmentation.
This research focuses on the design of tactile interfaces, using sensor technology.
Witter, M., de Rooij, A., van Dartel, M. & Krahmer, E. (nov. 2022) Bridging a sensory gap between deaf and hearing people–A plea for a situated design approach to sensory augmentation, PERSPECTIVE article, in Frontiers in Computer Science.
Witter, M. (2020) Gesitueerde ontwerpmethoden voor het ontwerp van Sensory Substitution toepassingen voor mensen met een zintuiglijke beperking, Promotiebeurs voor leraren, NWO.
Witter, M. & Calvi, L. (2017), Enabling Augmented Sense-Making (and Pure Experience) with Wearable Technology, In Y. Chisik, J. Holopainen, R. Khaled, J.L. Silva & P.A. Silva (Eds.) Lecture Notes of the Institute for Computer Sciences, Social Informatics and Telecommunications Engineering (LNICST) 215: Intelligent Technologies for Interactive Entertainment, pp. 136-141. Springer: Berlin.
Research Group: Situated Art and Design
Living in cities developed around data and acting within the inscrutable structure of our techno-society demands art and design that can help understand how we relate to these rapidly changing surroundings and to reflect on that relationship. The research group Situated Art and Design responds to this exigency by fostering a situated turn in art and design through a diverse portfolio of interdisciplinary research projects in partnership with academic and cultural partners, as well as with government and industry.Read more
‘People are the product of their relationships with their environment. It’s important to understand how technological developments influence these relationships.’
‘My practice is situated in between different actors, in this shape-shifting middle many things can happen.’
‘Imagination is the key to a strong inclusive society. Artistic work and situated design can contribute to a better understanding of the other.’
‘‘Understanding how creativity and imagination emerge from interactions with our environment will lead to improved innovation processes, tools and technologies.’’
‘Through an interplay of design and research, the apt questions and necessary tools can be discovered and applied to each research project.’
‘The essence of the situated, cinematic experience of dance lies in the mental interaction where the public becomes co-author.’
‘Could experimental sensory translation of art works improve their accessibility for sensory diverse exhibition audiences?’
‘I’m interested in how we can implement situated learning within design education.’
‘How can the notion of the ‘script’ be used in a situated design practice? ’
‘The ultimate goal is to enable people to improve their lives, making them more enjoyable and comfortable.’
‘Attention during interaction is personal, not a given fact.’
‘Getting comfortable with ambiguity enables designers to absorb feedback and use it to make better design choices.’
‘I look at the ways in which citizens can play an active role in shaping their cities, and how new media and technology can contribute to this.’
‘For me, the iterative design-research process is an exciting journey towards designs that can transform human consciousness.’