Fjord Fika podcast: We chat with Carla Diana
Episode 8: Carla Diana knew she always wanted to create things. She studied mechanical engineering in college because she didn’t know, “industrial design existed,” but soon a desire to study the more human side of things led her to design school and, ultimately, a masters degree in product design. She has spent her life exploring the impact of future technologies on people and society through hands-on experiments and product design. She has designed a range of products from robots to connected home appliances, and her designs have appeared on the covers of Popular Science, Technology Review and the New York Times Sunday Review. Her seminal essay, “Talking, Walking Objects”, is a good representation of her view of our connected, robotic future.
In our Fika break, I talk to Carla about the intersection of the physical and digital, our social relationships with products, and how robotics and AI can be applied to everyday objects. We tackle a number of angles such as: how do robots communicate with us clearly, yet subtly? How can light, sound and motion be used to abstract messages and communicate them in an intuitive and efficient way? How do they understand our intentions without being invasive? How do we use design to set expectations? Most importantly, perhaps, we discuss our moral and ethical obligations as people’s relationships with robots and AI expand and grow.