My MFA thesis project, ReFwdEmail, explores different ways to understand, represent, and uncover meaning about ourselves and our relationships within email. Completed in 2010, I spent 3 months researching and prototyping 9-10 different final explorations. Some of which are shown below. I was the sole contributor to the project including all visual design, print design, prototyping, research, and ideation.
Methods included In contextual interviews, going a week without email (experimentation on myself), diary studies, and mechanical turk surveys.
Data & Process
I used three sets of email data to produce my explorations. The first set of data used to generate these studies was a collection of emails taken from the week I did not check my own email: December 1, 2009 - December 7, 2009. The second dataset I used was the Enron email dataset. This dataset was much easier to access as many others have already parsed the information into a myriad of formats. I originally chose to use it as a MySQL database. The final dataset is a full scrape of my Gmail account from ~ 2004 - 2010.
All work started with sketches, some on paper and some in code.
A sample of final explorations both tangible and digital.
A week's worth of email as a magazine.
Tongue-in-cheek thank you note sent via postal service to one of my advisors.
If you're interested in my thesis work, drop me a line and I can send you my thesis book which documents all of my work in detail.