HomeCare: User Perspectives on In-Home Technology Care and Maintenance
Increased computing capabilities in the home could suggest a stronger need for external support of technologies at home. Accordingly, product and service designers require stronger understandings of how users setup, maintain, and repair their technologies at home in order to design appropriate devices and capabilities. The practices around domestic computing often vary dramatically from those in offices. Based on a three-country ethnographic research investigation, this paper considers factors that influence technology support needs in the home (focused on PCs in particular but also Consumer Electronics) and the impact of cultural, social, economic, and experiential factors meeting these needs. At the same time, this study will begin to assess how PC-centric technologies are both supporting and shaping existing social rules, values, and interactions in the home.
Keywords: User-Centered, Ethnography, Anthropology, Domestic Technology, Digital Home Services, Support
Dr. Todd S. Harple
Anthropologist / Researcher, Domestic Designs & Technologies Research