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virtual physical

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leveraging social tools to build a sustainable food network in Raleigh, North Carolina

 community

Kelly Michelle Murdoch-Kitt may 2009

committee

will temple committee chair assistant professor of graphic design

santiago piedrafita

associate professor of graphic design

meredith davis

professor of graphic design

submitted in partial fulfillment for the degree of master of graphic design department of graphic design, college of design north carolina state university


Collard greens are one of many crops cultivated at the Durham Inner City Garden (DIG), one of the programs of South Eastern Efforts for Susatainable Spaces, Inc. (SEEDS). March 2009


contents 1 abstract 3 researchable questions 7 describing community ingredients of community: five experiential elements communicational bonds and virtual communities of interest

11 community learning tools s talking to strangers: the learning community community learning tools

19 identity individual and community identity visual identity as ideology

27 collaborative production and community visualization n crowdsourcing: collaborative community production food information visualization

35 exchanges between virtual and physical communities virtually forging proximal bonds legitimizing the latent group meetup produces meatspace s physical manifestation of virtual spaces

47 food as myth the design of food . keeping fresh food in business eating closer to home: sustainable agriculture in n.c.

53 in closing y feasibility

57 bibliography 65 appendix 101 thank you


Picnic at J.C. Raulston Arboretum, Raleigh, N.C., March 2009.


1 abstract

abstract This design investigation leverages virtual and face-to-face communications to intervene in two concepts that have become opaque, distant, and fractured in American culture: food and the local community. Food in 21st century American culture is a myth constructed by science, advertising and marketing, from which the hegemony of industrial agriculture has emerged. Conversely, many of the people who identify with the sustainable agriculture movement are currently a latent group. By visually connecting different levels of participants to information and to each other, this latent group comes into existence as a physical community linked and reinforced by ongoing virtual communications. Eventually, participants’ activity in the community and the information they contribute creates a visual record that can become valuable beyond the immediate community of interest as policy-makers seek evidence of public activity and interest around the topic of sustainable agriculture in North Carolina. An interface of interactive maps, accessible via public wall, private browser, and mobile device, is customized by the community’s activities and contributions, emphasizing the proximity of locations, individuals, organizations, and information relevant to the topic of sustainable agriculture in central North Carolina. This design investigation also explores expressions of individual identity and community identity, communication and searching functions, and different types of data visualization. These categories enhance the function of the virtual community as a learning tool, and guide both the design of the virtual community and face-to-face interactions. The American food system today could benefit from clarity to reconnect consumers with food as a natural product of the land, integral to their personal health. American experiences with food are experiential when they should be reflective. This project proposes a ubiquitous virtual system that crowdsources reflective food decisions, enables product traceability, and helps different levels of conscious consumers make critical decisions within their local foodshed. Members create individual maps of their activities, interests, and experiences relevant to the local food community; these maps combine to create a holistic image of the conceptual community within the geo-spatial context of Raleigh, North Carolina. In addition to promoting the actors within the local, natural, sustainable agricultural network, the collaborative visualizations foster community learning through exchanges in both virtual and physical environments.


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Seedlings marked with knives at SEEDS, Durham, N.C., March 2009.


3 researchable questions

researchable questions How can a community create collaborative visualizations by combining objective data and subjective experience, resulting in new information geographies? What happens if this information reveals relationships between a physical location and its digital counterpart, or is removed from a physical context? This design investigation examines how a group of individuals who are interested in the specific social choice (Arrow) of sustainable, local (or urban) agriculture and are members of the same proximal community (Deuze) of Raleigh, North Carolina, can impact both the virtual community through which they communicate and the physical community they inhabit. Participants interact through a collaborative learning environment and a set of generative mapping tools to communicate both verbally and visually with each other, and learn from each other’s visual representations of activity within their conceptual and geographic community. The virtual, mapbased community through which they interact combines characteristics of many types of existing online social environments, which will be described in detail. Characteristics of the proposed community will be measured against Elizabeth Tunstall’s model of Five Experiential Elements of Community. In this virtual community, individual identity and community identity are interrelated. The community contributes to the individual’s identity (joining the community is a reflection of one’s ideology), and individuals collectively create the community conceptually, visually, and physically. The community is comprised of smaller networks, which are made visible through each individual’s identity and the connections between certain individuals, locations, and organizations. Through these smaller networks, the larger community attracts individuals with varied interests within a similar, overarching ideology. This diversity ensures a looseness of the network, i.e. participants are likely to make connections with new people and therefore new information, as opposed to collecting

sustainable agriculture an integrated system of plant and animal production practices having a site-specific application that will, over the long term: satisfy human food and fiber needs enhance environmental quality and the natural resource base upon which the agricultural economy depends make the most efficient use of nonrenewable resources and on-farm resources and integrate, where appropriate, natural biological cycles and controls sustain the economic viability of farm operations enhance the quality of life for farmers and society as a whole (1990 U.S. Farm Bill; usda.gov) urban agriculture an energy-saving practice of localized food production that involves growing, processing, and /or exchanging food in or around an urban or developed area, which contributes to food safety and security by providing fresh products (vegetables, fruit, eggs, meat) to consumers and by increasing the amount of food available to residents in densely populated areas. loose network a social structure in which many of the members do not know each other and there are very few redundant or interrelated connections between members. See also latent groups (p. 41)


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State Farmers Market, Raleigh, N.C., April 2009.


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current contacts. The connections between people, places, information, and organizations are

While personal interests are one aspect of participants’ identities, reflecting one’s level of expertise in those elected categories is also important to the function of this virtual network as a learning community. Through Jean Lave and Etienne Wenger’s model of situated learning, community members will learn from each other not only through direct communications, but also through mentorship and observation. Mentoring relationships may be elected by individuals or facilitated by the technology of the community, which assists in matching specific individual interests and proximity. One important aspect of this community’s learning experience is the visualization of both factual information gleaned from the locations associated with the community, as well as the discursive data generated by members’ responses to information, events, and each other. Finally, the

learning community a group of people sharing common interests, beliefs and/or practices who actively communicate, observe, and exchange information with each other in order to increase individual knowledge as well as the collective knowledge base of the group.

virtual community facilitates and encourages online and offline interactions in the physical realm between members, organizations, and physical locations associated with the community.

observation, interaction

novice intermediate advanced progression

expert

learning community

Interpretation of Lave and Wenger’s concept of situated learning.

researchable questions | introduction

visible to other participants, as they help explain and reinforce the community.


adapted from Five Experiential Elements of Community by Elizabeth Tunstall Presented at NC State University January 2008

relationships The basic units of community through which people establish trust and understanding. People want multidimensional and enduring relationships.

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People’s ability to control, or at least influence, decisions about the things that impact their communities and themselves. Agency is a necessary first step in establishing a sense of belonging to a community.

People’s understanding of where they come from, who they are, and where they are going. People want their histories acknowledged.

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People’s articulation of what matters most to them. For most people, life goals include growing other people, having an impact, supporting friends and family, and professional development.

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Provides employees with an understanding of who is responsible for decisions, how decisions are made, and how people contribute and fit into the larger communities.

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describing community ingredients of community: five experiential elements During a 2008 presentation entitled “Communitas Digitas” at North Carolina State University, Design Anthropologist Elizabeth Tunstall explained the concept of communitas according to Victor Turner. Communitas can be existential, which confronts individual identities; normative, a group that regulates and sustains itself over time; and ideological, based on the community’s shared beliefs. According to Tunstall, ritual and liminality also contribute to communitas. Tunstall also presented a model for community, which she described as its “Five Experiential Elements.” Tunstall’s elements articulate aspects of control, responsibility, communication, personal development, and community awareness. While certain community members may prioritize some elements over others, effective and functional communities acknowledge all of the elements to some degree. This diagram for community will be used to measure and describe various aspects of the sustainable foods community herein proposed. communicational bonds and virtual communities of interest Virtual communities can be as meaningful—or perhaps more so—than the traditional proximal communities upon which the original definition of ‘community’ was based. Our ever-evolving and

communitas (normative) Under the influence of time, the need to mobilize and organize resources to keep the members of a group alive and thriving and the necessity for social control among those members in pursuance of these and other collective goals (Turner). communitas (ideological) A label one can apply to a variety of utopian models or blueprints of societies believed by their authors to exemplify or supply the optimal conditions for existential communitas (Turner). ritual A performance planned or improvised that effects a transition from everyday life to an alternative context in which the everyday is transformed (Bowie). liminality An interval between two distinct periods of intensive involvement in structured social existence. Liminal individuals are neither here nor there; they are betwixt and between the positions assigned and arrayed by law, custom, convention, and ceremony (Turner).

intensifying relationship with technology and our connectedness through the Internet necessarily expand the definition of “community.” Additionally, it is possible that communicational bonds lead to more meaningful or stronger communities (even if produced by interface, i.e. virtual or “networked”) because they are completely voluntary, often actively sought by potential members, and based upon specific personal interest(s). Proximal communities develop from the chance location of people near each other, whether they are in the same office building, neighborhood, college dorm, or even family. While proximal relationships and communities are often meaningful and important, the communities we build and choose for ourselves are as significant and worthwhile as those to which we belong solely by chance. Robert Putnam supports the significance of communicational bonds:

community of interest people brought together by shared ideologies, interests, and/or activities proximal community a group brought together through a common physical location, not necessarily interests; examples include family, neighbors, co-workers

describing community | ingredients of community: five experiential elements

communitas (existential) The direct, immediate, and total confrontation of human identities which, when it happens, tends to make those experiencing it think of mankind as a homogeneous, unstructured, and free community (Turner).


8 Kelly M. Murdoch-Kitt

Communication is a fundamental prerequisite for social and emotional connections. [...] the Internet in particular substantially enhance[s] our ability to communicate; thus it seems reasonable to assume that their net effect will be to enhance community, perhaps even dramatically. Social capital is about networks, and the Net is the network to end all networks (Putnam, 171).

One of the major benefits of early virtual communities was that they relied on common interest and “communicational bonds,” (Deuze, 32), even though earlier technologies restricted the participants of virtual communities to mostly text-based communication.

Specifically, Millennials, activists, and those who fund social causes need to engage each other, and discuss the role of policy change in current activist efforts. This discourse then needs to focus on ways to motivate larger circles of young people beyond their normal networks. And it all must be done in a meaningful way, so that we can define or at least measure the successful change that is generated. (Fine, 60)

The Internet is not about technology, it is not about information, it is about communication—people talking with each other [...] Communication is the basis, the foundation, the radical ground and root upon which all community stands, grows, and thrives. The Internet is a community of chronic communicators. (Strangelove, 11)

The tools facilitating exchanges between these “chronic communicators” have drastically improved since the early days of the public internet. Combined with an influx of users, advances in the graphic user interface (GUI) have multiplied and strengthened virtual communities by enabling visual and auditory communication experiences, in addition to text-based exchanges. a social context for activities Though there are innumerable online communities today, one can sort them into a few major groups. The largest of these groups encompasses interestbased social communities, founded on similar interests, issues, activities, and groups of friends who know each other in virtual and/or physical space. Other types include romantic communities, with the specific goal of meeting

others for amorous relationships. Academic communities provide a platform for discussion for scholars and researchers, facilitating collaboration and idea exchange. Other professional social movement a type of group action. They are large informal groupings of individuals and/ or organizations focused on specific political or social issues, in other words, on carrying out, resisting or undoing a social change. (wikipedia) social citizenship a nascent model and era of citizen participation that combines idealism, digital fluency, and immersion in social causes (Fine, 6).

communities support career-based networks, predictably including many members within the class of information workers. Career networks enable participants to make referrals and suggestions, as well as offer guidance and support to each other. “Social change networks” are dedicated to specific social movements, efforts and causes, sometimes assembling “social citizens” independently of friend-based networks (Fine, 2008). These communities relate to the physical world in different ways, “ranging from {those} [sic] that connect geographically distant people with no prior acquaintance who share similar interests to […] community networks that focus on issues relevant to a geographically defined neighborhood” (DiMaggio et al, 317).


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Charlene Li provides further explanatory analysis of “social contexts for activities” by looking at The problem is that what people do is still pretty limited. [...] the top applications on Facebook [...] can be roughly grouped into 1) managing/comparing/interacting with friends in a general context; 2) self-expression (FunWall, Bumper Sticker); 3) games; and 4) media preferences (iLike, Flikster). These are all fun and interesting, but they only begin to scratch the surface of what I do every day (Li, 2008).

Li sees shopping experiences as a great opportunity to leverage one’s existing social network, to get advice or read reviews from a friend before making a purchase. This type of social ranking is already evident in social search functions, which rank responses to queries not just by keyword matching, but in terms of the way the community categorizes and classifies the results. “People in networked markets have figured out that they get far better information and support from one another than from vendors. So much for corporate rhetoric about adding value to commoditized products”

social search an evolving type of search engine that reveals results based on user contributions and feedback. (e.g. Digg)

(Levine et al, 2001). While food is necessarily a retail experience for most American consumers, its means of production are essentially a black box, which can make choices difficult for eaters who want to be environmentally conscious. Food shopping, particularly ecological food shopping, is a regular retail experience that could be enhanced by accessible information from a knowledgeable and experienced network of fellow consumers, as well as producers, distributors, and other food-related

black box a system that conceals its inner workings, so that only inputs and outcomes are accessible to an end user

organizations who want to be part of the conversation. “Smart markets will find suppliers who speak their own language” (Levine et al, 2001).

If consumers ever consider where beef comes from, they likely conjure a mental image similar to this pasture. However, the standard process of raising beef cattle in the U.S. involves confinement feed lots (CFLs), quite the opposite of happy cows at pasture. The CFL method, therefore, is black boxed from consumers. Pasture-raised cattle Triangle Ranch, S.D., June 2008.

describing community | communicational bonds and virtual communities of interest

sub-categories for social activities occurring within Facebook.


Community Learning & Five Experiential Elements of Community

relationships

adapted from Five Experiential Elements of Community by Elizabeth Tunstall Presented at NC State University January 2008

Communication tools in the virtual realm facilitate and reinforce faceto-face relationships. Interactions originating in the virtual community can transition into physical space.

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Articulated through one’s personal interest array (in profile), communications between members, and the types of information requested and contributed to the system, life goals of individual members are critical components of learning exchanges within the virtual (and face-to-face) community.

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Members can find and interact with others who are more local eaters than themselves. Distant eaters can find mentors to help them learn how to eat more within their foodshed. Experienced members can find others for volunteering or advocacy opportunities. Credentialed experts provide reliable resources for the whole community.

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Timelines are important not only for understanding the histories of certain foods (e.g. time elapsed between harvest, processing, delivery, purchase) but also to the development of an individual’s map and, by association, the evolution of the whole sustainable agriculture community.

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Because of data contributed by participating places and organizations and commentary and responses from other members of the community, participants are able to make educated food choices based on what is seasonally available in their area. They can explore choices based on their individual interests and awareness, such as personal health, support of the local economy, or environmental impact.

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How does this system help participants learn from other participants? How can participants locate others whose interests or expertise match their learning needs? talking to strangers: the learning community Virtual communities often enhance the physical (non-virtual) lives of their participants. “In other words, research suggests that the Internet sustains the bonds of community by complementing, not replacing, other channels of interaction” (DiMaggio et al, 318). The potential for different types of members to exist within a particular community affects ideas about that particular community’s role and use. Large, loose groups are generally comprised of smaller, tighter networks which inevitably intersect, collide, or overlap within the greater community, which creates the possibility of encountering certain people in unexpected contexts. While some members are concerned with issues of accessibility and the public nature of their personal information, these unexpected brushes with ideas or individuals are often helpful or productive. Though the success of social networking sites like LinkedIn and Facebook promote a paradigm of similar “contact management” communities, there are still virtual entities that enable and encourage making new contacts. In the early days of the public Internet, users were almost implicitly physically distant. Because fewer people were connected at that time, the likelihood of encountering someone online whom one already knew or who lived

Facebook is all about being a reflection of real-world relationships. (Brandee Barker, Facebook representative, quoted in Slatella, 2007)

creating conditions for community learning | talking to strangers: the learning community

creating conditions for community learning


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in one’s own geographic area was fairly rare; most people one would meet online were “strangers”

Kelly M. Murdoch-Kitt

(Wellman, 2004; Rheingold, 2000) The greater number of people now using the Internet in general makes membership in both kinds of communities justifiable: more of one’s face-to-face friends and contacts are now online, and management-oriented communities keep track of them and help one stay in touch. However, the overall increase in Internet use also means that there are more “strangers” online, which creates growing possibilities for meeting and connecting with new people, both virtually and face-to-face. Alongside the growing number of friends and strangers online, participants in virtual communities have concurrently witnessed great advances in both interface and media accessibility, as the web moved from a largely text-based platform to a rich environment in which images, audio and video combine to give people a multi-sensory experience and new options for asynchronous and synchronous communication, beyond first-generation methods such as text-based email and instant messaging (DiMaggio et al,). Whitney Hess, a New York-based user experience designer, writer and consultant, wonders about the phenomenon of more users and fewer strangers in her blog, “Pleasure and Pain: Measuring the impact of new technology on human experience.” In a post entitled “The Stranger Aversion,” Hess responds to another blog post by Charlie O’Donnell, CEO of Path101, a career-evaluation community. O’Donnell questions the shift toward social communities that allow us to connect with people we already know instead of meeting new people (O’Donnell, 2008). In response, Hess muses: “Is the answer simply that now that everyone we know is online there’s no need to connect with a stranger? How has our design of social systems encouraged this insular behavior?” (Hess, 2008). Twitter This web service, a self-professed “modern antidote to information overload,” asks participants to respond to the question “What are you doing?” in 140 characters or less (twitter.com). The microblogging community allows users to connect to friends, family, and yes, even strangers. Other than the character limit, Twitter’s open format creates opportunities for Twitter to be used for asynchronous or synchronous conversation, commentary, reporting, passive search, and social search that can be public, private, objective or subjective.

Twitter is an excellent example of a network that promotes interacting with and meeting new people who often live in one’s physical community. For those who “tweet,” Twitter provides a network that is reliable not necessarily because of reciprocity, but because it is self-selected. Accessible via its official website, various third-party applications, and mobile devices, Twitter is often more convenient than mere one-to-one instant messaging, farther reaching because messages are dispatched to all of an individual’s “followers” and made available to public searches, and more personal than a mass email, because followers have opted to receive messages. The 140 character limit guarantees digestible bites of information, easily consumed or ignored without risk by a network of friends, acquaintances and strangers.) Unlike Facebook and LinkedIn, Twitter is not a reciprocal system, as Hess explains in a blog post entitled “The Meaning of Friend:” If we haven’t met in real life and had any semblance of an actual conversation, I don’t want to connect on Facebook or LinkedIn. These systems require reciprocation (you add me, I confirm), and by having you in my network I am tacitly implying that I vouch for you. When someone else in my network comes into contact with you, our connection is an instant jolt of credibility. Or hell, if they don’t like me it just might work against you! (Hess, 2008)


Heterogenous networks may provide greater opportunities for learning, as well as expanding one’s

Because our close friends tend to move in the same circles that we do, the information they receive overlaps considerably with what we already know. Acquaintances, by contrast, know people that we do not, and thus receive more novel information. This outcome arises in part because our acquaintances are typically less similar to us than close friends, and in part because they spend less time with us. Moving in different circles from ours, they connect us to a wider world (Granovetter, 2004).

Providing ways for new people to encounter each other does not guarantee that the meeting is meaningful or desirable (nor does it necessarily build community), unless the people involved have something in common. Location is one of the many factors that may produce meaningful interactions or relationships. However, when people share common interests, activities, or beliefs, it increases the likelihood that they will be open to interacting with each other. While common interests are important, differences are also valuable. “To be successful, social change efforts need broad, open networks that cross everyday boundaries to include people who are not just like us” (Fine, 52). Social change networks need to provide ways for people to make new connections with people outside their immediate circle(s) with whom they share some meaningful interest, activity, or ideology. If this network is also governed by location, participants can learn more about not only the specific topic of the community, but how that topic applies to their shared physical environment. This design investigation combines the physical location of Raleigh and its many food-related attributes together with its residents and their specific, food-related activities and interests. These ingredients inform each other, creating a dynamic, layered map of varied information, which allows inhabitants to see their environment in a new way, i.e. as it applies to sustainable agriculture. Through the map interface, participants experience the topic of sustainable agriculture in Raleigh in terms of the most recent, local activity around it. community learning tools The learning opportunities and exchanges possible within the map of Raleigh’s sustainable food community are designed around Lave and Wenger’s theory of situated learning. This theory necessarily involves the visibility of an individual’s identity and level of expertise (discussed in the following section). Situated learning contrasts with traditional theories of internalized learning, suggesting instead that: Learning as increasing participation in communities of practice concerns the whole person acting in the world. Conceiving of learning in terms of participation focuses attention on ways in which it is an evolving, continuously renewed set of relations; this is, of course, consistent with a relational view, of persons, their actions, and the world, typical of a theory of social practice (Lave and Wenger, 50).

Enabling participants to see, respond to, and join in each others’ experiences in the world (specifically the world of sustainable agriculture) establishes opportunities for apprenticeship

creating conditions for community learning | talking to strangers: the learning community

social connections. Strangers and acquaintances, sociologists argue, can actually provide more new knowledge and information than current friends:

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relationships between members at different levels and socially mediated learning throughout the community: As an aspect of social practice, learning involves the whole person; it implies not only a relation to specific activities, but a relation to social communities—it implies becoming able to be involved in new activities, to perform new tasks and functions, to master new understandings (Lave and Wenger 53).

Communication is vital to learning, and this particular virtual community is constructed to provide a variety of asynchronous and synchronous communication exchanges. Participants can have asynchronous conversations through leaving and responding to static comments or responding to others’ queries through static comments. Using a visual language of basic geometric shapes, participants also incorporate locations, articles, sites, images, video, maps, recipes, instructions, and calendar items (events) into their own information maps or as part of a comment or response. This content may already exist online or be authored by the participants. If multiple members add the same item or location to their individual maps, it impacts the appearance of the group map. Like Esther Polak’s Amsterdam RealTime project for the Waag Society for Old and New Media, the individual and cumulative maps created by the Raleigh sustainable food community “gesture toward a way of mapping the city that favors incorporating public participation over reproducing minute detail” (Ross, 185). Unlike Polak’s project, however, the sustainable food map presents both synchronous and asynchronous information that evolves over time. “Understanding the technology of practice is more than learning to use tools; it is a way to connect

Two individuals’ maps become part of a cumulative group map. Esther Polak Amsterdam RealTime Waag Society for Old and New Media 2002 Else/Where: Mapping p. 188–189

with the history of the practice and to participate more directly in its cultural life.” (Lave and Wenger, 101) Synchronously, participants can communicate through text-based chat, and audio or video chat mediated by the system. In-person meetings, which are necessarily synchronous, are facilitated by the map’s “Introduction” tool. Such face-to-face interactions and events can also be asynchronously documented through images, audio conversations and video participants contribute to the system. Face-to-face interactions between community members expand on


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learning experiences, friendships, lifestyle choices and “cultural life” of the sustainable agriculture

The frequency or duration of communications between community members and their activities within the environment are represented in the ties between them. Activities, tasks, functions and understandings do not exist in isolation; they are part of broader systems of relations in which they have meaning. These systems of relations arise out of and are reproduced and developed within social communities, which are in part systems of relations among persons (Lave and Wenger, 53).

See Appendix for persona descriptions.

Revealing connections is important to participants’ understanding of both the conceptual map of sustainable foods as well as the social structures of their community. These ties reveal different types of communications, interactions, and relationships between the people, places, products, and organizations that comprise the sustainable agriculture community. Private exchanges are only incorporated to an individual’s personal map, while public communications and interactions, like other collected information, become part of the community’s collective map. Mapped information is also categorized in the

Derek arrives early, but his device lets him know that Michelle is nearby. He takes a photo with his device and sends it to her so it will be easier for her to recognize him at the garden center.

I got here a little earlier than expected, I’m just waiting in the cafe area, take your time.

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community’s searchable database, though discursive results are differentiated from other types of data in the visual information landscape. As mentioned in the following discussion of identity, the system connects people at different points along the novice-expert range to encourage communication and learning opportunities between members of different levels.

michelle’s device Michelle responds with a current photo and lets Derek know her estimated arrival time.

Sorry I’m running behind, our babysitter showed up late. See you in 5.

creating conditions for community learning | talking to strangers: the learning community

community reflected in the virtual realm.

The system facilitates in-person introductions through an exchange of images and greetings between participants’ mobile devices when they are in the same vicinity. In this case, because they are not yet in the same location, the map behind the image shows them in relation to each other and their shared destination.


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Derek and Michelle first meet via chat when Michelle responds to Derek’s question about vegetable gardening.


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Above: Michelle and Derek arrange a meeting at Logan’s Trading Company, a nearby gardening center, where they meet face-to-face. Derek benefits from her knowledge about organic vegetable gardening.

Michelle and Derek meet again face-to-face at the interactive wall at the State Farmers Market. She is viewing a farm’s profile and products, and he gives their strawberries a word-of-mouth recommendation.


Identity & Five Experiential Elements of Community

relationships

adapted from Five Experiential Elements of Community by Elizabeth Tunstall Presented at NC State University January 2008

Expressions of identity, including one’s relative expertise in sustainable eating and an array of specific sub-interests under the umbrella of sustainable foods, may encourage interaction between previously unconnected members.

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Articulated through one’s personal interest array (in profile), communications between members, and the types of information requested and contributed to the system, life goals of individual members are critical components of an individual’s identity and of the individual’s understanding of themselves within the larger community.

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Expressions of identity, including one’s declared interests, learning goals, and “local-ness” of food consumption create the organizational structure of the community. Identity enables members to find others who have compatible interests or information to help them meet their learning (and local eating) goals.

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Because personal maps are part of an individual’s identity and reflective of their interests, one can measure the progression of a specific category over time (like vegetable gardening) within one’s personal map and visually compare that to the evolution of that interest within the comprehensive community map.

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One’s level of activity and contributions to the community directly impact outward expressions of one’s identity (placement along distant to local eating spectrum).

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19 identity | individual and community identity

identity How can a participant’s visual identity evolve over time, reflecting changing levels of experience and/or participation? How does this enhance or impede learning and interactions with community members of different ‘ranks?’ (Lave & Wenger) How can the history and composition of the community be reflected in its collective visual identity? (Tunstall) individual and community identity Self-representation is an important aspect of participation in online social spaces. Online identity is mutable, allowing participants to explore who they want to be and how they want to depict themselves to others (Tynes). Because the Internet has evolved from text to GUI, people can come much closer to simulating “real life” interactions in a virtual space. Accessibility of photos, video, and voice communication also helps to build trust between new online friends, and bridges the transition between virtual and physical environments. Members of proximal communities who we encounter in daily life include neighbors, families, co-workers, classmates, church members, etc. These people are associated with a specific physical space and sometimes bear additional signifiers that help others understand their connection to a place (and each other), like classmates who are the same age carrying backpacks and walking home together, or employees in uniform or business attire. Communities of interest sometimes display visible signs of membership as well. A neighborhood dog park is an example of a community of interest intersecting with a proximal community: here, neighbors who might never otherwise interact with each other often become friends because of their common interest in their dogs. While dog ownership is fairly general, if dogs are removed from the equation, this example becomes a proximal community (neighbors) who share an interest in outdoor space (the park). It is a looser,


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less specific interest and it

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would be more difficult for the casual observer to ascertain what these people might have in common, aside from enjoying the park. Visual or spatial cues are often absent when it comes to identifying members of most communities of interest, and identification becomes even more difficult with latent communities. There are some exceptions—for example, apparel No Artificial Flavors... Women’s Cap Sleeve T-Shirt UBIQWIT http://www.cafepress.com/ubiqwit Tweet necklace Kristen’s Custom Creations Featured at Geek Sugar http://www.geeksugar.com/2883330 TWITTER Necklace—Follow Me kzoretic Etsy.com http://www.etsy.com/view_listing. php?listing_id=23043093 A tweet for your neck Bijoujuju Smashing Darling http://www.smashingdarling.com/ item/a-tweet-for-your-neck

that deliberately signifies a particular ideology or aligns with a cause through words and/ or images, such as this “No Artificial Flavors” t-shirt. A number of Twitterinspired necklaces have also appeared through online craft vending sites such as Etsy.com. However, without more information from the individual wearer, it is impossible to discern whether fashion choices are intended to reflect humor, irony, or ideology. The wearer might even choose them arbitrarily, without considering the garments’ meanings. Identity ties directly to the community learning aspect of the Raleigh sustainable food map, as well as its ideology. Althusser’s theory of ideology explains that individuals are “summoned by ideologies, which recruit us as their “authors” and their essential subject” (Sturken and Cartwright, 52). Within the sustainable food map, participants can view

interpellation Louis Althusser’s term “to describe the process by which ideological systems call out to or “hail” social subjects and tell them their place in the system. In popular culture, interpellation refers to the ways that cultural products address their consumers and recruit them into a particular ideological position” (Sturken and Cartwright).

and are interpellated by each others’ learning categorization, frequency of participation, and the community’s response to that participation. Identity is a key component of community. Considering Tunstall’s five experiential elements of community, the visibility and accessibility of individual identity and its unique components to all community members contributes particularly to the community’s organizational structure, life goals, and historical consciousness. Identity can also profoundly impact relationships, which has particular significance within a learning community.


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visual identity as ideology

identity | visual identity as ideology

Visualizing a participant’s level of expertise in the sustainable food community not only allows individuals to declare where they see themselves on the “novice” to “expert” scale, but also makes this designation accessible to the rest of the community. (I am working with the assumption that novices who choose to participate are interested, just lacking in knowledge and experience; they perhaps have different motivations than the advanced or expert participants.) Individual identity is fluid—participants can assign themselves to different “levels” for different categories of interests within the sustainable foods community. A member could be an “advanced” at cooking and a “novice” at gardening. This aspect of identity is useful because it helps other members of the community understand how to interact with each other. At a glance, participants have an idea of who might have certain kinds of information or experience. A more detailed visual array of a participants’ specific areas of interest within the larger topic of sustainable food appears within an individual’s profile view. One can compare their interest array with that of a fellow member to assess compatibility (“we have similar interests”) or a complimentary array (“we have slightly different interests and can help expand each other’s views”). Individuals may choose from established categories of interest or create a new category if a particular interest is not yet represented. As participants add places, ask questions, and contribute information to the community, the system may suggest additional categories based on the individual’s demonstrated interests. Similarly, if an individual is not active in a particular category, the system may suggest removing that category from one’s array. Suggestion technology (Fogg) assists with identity management so that the system may make better mentorship or activity matches between members, as well as more useful suggestions (from the database and in realtime from other members) while one is engaged in the physical environment. This system of inter-connected psychogeographies stems from the Situationist International (SI) movement: [SI] offers a remarkably sophisticated theorization of urbanism, a new vocabulary to describe and engage with the city as an open-ended place of play and investigation, The SI was interested in constructing “psychogeographies” of urban environments—creating mental correspondences for physical locales—going through a city block by block, neighborhood by neighborhood, building a revolutionary sense of mutable space and creative engagement. (Lunenfeld, 10)

According to Lave and Wenger’s theory of situated learning, novices learn from observing and interacting with more experienced members of a particular learning community, or [...] systems of relations among persons. The person is defined by as well as defines these relations. Learning thus implies becoming a different person with respect to the possibilities enabled by these systems of relations. To ignore this aspect of learning is to overlook the fact that learning involves the construction of identities (Lave and Wenger 53).

Thus, participants are gradually able to move to new levels of understanding. Participants’ identities will evolve as they increase their knowledge and experience with a specific area of interest.

suggestion technology an interactive computing product that suggests a behavior at the most opportune moment [...] often building on people’s existing motivations. (Fogg, 41)


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While participants are able to identify others who might make good potential learning matches or

Kelly M. Murdoch-Kitt

friends, the system can also make suggestions of people with different levels of expertise for them to meet within the community. By matching zipcodes or neighborhoods with subcategories of interest, the system can help new and experienced members initiate contact with other participants. We have begun to analyze the changing forms of participation and identity of persons who engage in sustained participation in a community of practice: from entrance as a newcomer, through becoming an old-timer with respect to new newcomers, to a point when those newcomers themselves become old-timers. Rather than a teacher/learner dyad, this points to a richly diverse field of essential actors and, with it, other forms of relationships and participation (Lave and Wenger, 56).

The “novice-to-expert” spectrum also correlates to David Rose’s Receptivity Gradient, particularly in the case of social movements, like sustainable agriculture. As a participant gains more experience within the community, he/she will probably require less prompting by the system and other participants to make connections, find locations, or participate in activities, and eventually become knowledgeable enough to guide and encourage newcomers. An individual’s community memberships and corresponding maps are an extension of his/her identity, and these individual maps contribute to the collective identity of a particular community by showing how its members describe and participate in it within the contexts of the physical environment as well as virtual /information space. Over time, the activities of individuals will cause the overall image of the community of interest to evolve. Reviewing this visible evolution contributes to participants’ historical consciousness (Tunstall) of sustainable foods within their physical community. Building this community identity timeline could be both passive and active: it could evolve as participants change their personal maps, and individuals could add information to the community’s map that preexists the inception of the virtual community. adapted from Information Receptivity Gradient by David S. Rose taught by Meredith Davis, Fall 2008 (not ready to know)

ready to know

ready to hold opinion

ready to act on an opinion

ready to advocate publicly

sustainable foods map functions in this range project’s relationship to Rose’s diagram

novice

distant eater

intermediate

advanced

credentialed expert

local eater


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organizations

identity | individual and community identity

people

places

nonleast participant local

most local

An early study of the geometric iconography system: Vegetable textures were replaced by colors and gradients in the mobile device, and by color-coded images of participants in the browser and wall interfaces.

Early studies of an individual map (left) and community map (right) show how an individual’s connections contribute to the structure of the community.

Derek’s “recent activity” map employs simple geometric shapes to indicate active participants, updates, and ongoing conversations

Geometry blends with photographic images in a more detailed view of Derek’s search results.

Below: This detail from the laptop browser shows a related but differentiated treatment of recent activity from Derek’s map connections.


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Every time Derek visits the virtual sustainable food community, he sees a view of the most recent activity of the people, places, and organizations that he has chosen to follow based on his personal interests. This recent activity map is part of Derek’s identity in this community, as it visually describes the ways his interests manifest themselves within the larger sustainable food community. He can also choose to see his map within the context of the community’s cumulative map.


25 identity | individual and community identity

Derek submits a question to the community.

Emerging results change the composition of Derek’s map.

Derek (indicated at center) is transmitting his question, and the active markers indicate responses associated with different members. Mapped search results change over time as more members respond or add content that could pertain to Derek’s question.


Collaborative visualization & Five Experiential Elements of Community

relationships

adapted from Five Experiential Elements of Community by Elizabeth Tunstall Presented at NC State University January 2008

The system visually expresses relationships between people, but also relationships between people and information, people and locations, and food and location(s).

h

r to is Visualizations can provide a sense of what has changed, i.e. contrasting the sustainable food landscape now vs. the landscape 5 years ago.

iousness

collaborative visualization

io n

Information visualizations of data contributed by individuals can reflect what matters most to them. Visualizations within the community can help members find what they seek, and as well as find useful information they didn’t know they were looking for.

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The overall community is organized around the sustainable food movement, but visualizations within individuals’ profile views and from the information they contribute to the system reveals sub-categories within the community and the information most interesting and useful to its members.

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Members could have an expanded view of the community and the larger impact of their food purchasing choices by showing connections between activity at federal or state level (laws/policies) and food consumption on a personal level (see appendix for service ecology maps).

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a o g


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How can different principles of information organization be used to help participants find information relevant to their current location, date/time? (Wurman) How can the principles be used to differentiate different types of information in the system? crowdsourcing: collaborative community production Virtual communities, like the people who inhabit them, are also mutable and fluid. One might find a professional contact through an interest-based social community, or vice versa. While many communities outline rules for appropriate conduct to prevent harassment or abuse of member content or personal information, most virtual communities seem to be fairly self-regulating: the personality or purpose of the community and those who are already established in it will set the tone for newcomers. There is an understood protocol and purpose for separate communities, and those who care most about the community help regulate it through their participation and acclimatization of new members. Socially reinforced conventions aside, one of the powerful features of virtual networks is that there is generally no prescribed way to use them. Members manage them as they wish and as best suits their own desires and purposes. “The most profound effects of social tools lag their invention by years, because it isn’t until they have a critical mass of adopters, adopters who take these tools for granted, that their real effects begin to appear� (Shirky, 270). Because cultural innovation occurs after users start to take a particular technology for granted, the fact that members use these communities in various and sometimes unpredictable ways shows great promise for the evolution of future virtual communities.

collaborative production and information visualization | crowdsourcing: collaborative community production

collaborative production and information visualization


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While many networks are deliberately social, networks that do not primarily intend to be social sometimes give rise to social groups. Often the social (or “community”) aspect of a site emerges through patterns of use, like people who regularly comment on the same blog or post in the same forum. Comments left in the public community space inform the identity of the community by expressing the values, interests, and ideas of its participants. Public comments can often inspire direct or private messages between individual users or groups of users, who then get to know each other. Communication-based community building can happen in any variety of online environments, from medical information sites to fan sites for a particular band. To the casual

This page and at right: screen shots from IBM’s Many Eyes data visualization community April 2009

Internet searcher who stumbles upon one of these communities via coincidental keyword search, forums often seem to be anonymous lists of comments. However, an active participant reads these posts differently; as part of that particular community, he/she knows the people associated with that list of comments. Though they are text-based, the commentary that evolves in blogs and forums is a form of collaborative, creative production. On a more conspicuous scale, some well-known sites that rely on user-generated content (beyond comments and commentary), like flickr and YouTube, also create community and help some members forge new relationships. The difference between those sites and something like a forum or fan site is that sites like flickr and YouTube and their members are not only focused around a common interest (shooting photography, making/watching videos), but participants also regularly create rich original content for these sites. In some cases this content gives other participants much more to discuss than a written comment, not to mention insight to the contributor’s personality and/or interests. Pooling and sorting content (as is commonly seen on flickr) can produce new communities by highlighting a common interest (or common event) between members who were not previously aware of one another. These pools sometimes create miniature communities within the larger community. Shirky writes about how the flickr “photo pool” for photos of Coney Island’s famous Mermaid Parade drew images from a variety of people who attended the event. The parade has thousands of participants and spectators every year, so there is not a great likelihood that these people saw or met each other at the actual parade. They can, however, form a new virtual community within flickr to combine their personal documentation of the parade. This is an example


of crowdsourcing in that their cumulative contributions create a larger, more comprehensive experience of contributing to the group archive also binds them together in the virtual realm based on their common interests in the Mermaid Parade, photography, and their common location at a particular time (Coney Island) (Shirky, 32). This type of distributed production or problem-solving, typically associated with virtual space, can also translate into physical communities and the way individuals interact with their physical environment. IBM’s Many Eyes project facilitates a different kind of group production by providing participants with a set of generative diagramming tools. Participants provide the raw data, and Many Eyes helps give form to that data by letting each contributor choose different types of visualization options. Members can access each others’ data sets, generate new visualizations, and compare/contrast the effectiveness of certain visual treatments in conveying a particular finding or message. In addition to quantitative data, members can also contribute text as data. Many Eyes can interpret words quantitatively into “tag clouds,” providing an array of words in varying size and color, depending on the frequency and voice. Contributors are encouraged to label and provide the original resource of the data they provide, which helps to contextualize the resulting visualizations and can stimulate discussion and debate in the form of verbal and visual exchanges.

29 collaborative production and information visualization | crowdsourcing: collaborative community production

photographic archive of the parade than any one of them could probably create individually. The

crowdsourcing term originally appeared in a flickr discussion, refers to a model of distributed problem-solving in which the “crowd” (a group of people, users) contributes (often in incremental amounts) to solving a larger problem or creating something they could not create individually. (e.g. wikipedia)


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food information visualization

Kelly M. Murdoch-Kitt

Contributing information and communicating with other participants are two ways for members to use and learn from their maps, but the way the information is presented provides other opportunities to gain knowledge and make discoveries. Several visualization types within the map can connect a community member’s question with a response and resource (person, location) for further exploration or discussion. In his book, Information Anxiety, Richard Saul Wurman describes category This mode lends itself well to organizing items of similar importance. Category is well reinforced by color as opposed to numbers, which have inherent value.

five ways to categorize information: category, time, location, alphabet, and continuum. “While information may be infinite, the ways of structuring it are not. And once you have a place in which the information can be plugged, it becomes that much more useful” (Wurman, 59). The sustainable agriculture community seeks factual and objective information, such as nutritional

time Time is an easily understandable framework from which changes can can be observed and comparisons made.

values, prices, the distance a food has traveled, the resources used in production, where the item was harvested and/or processed, and the physical locations of stores, distributors, restaurants, community organizations, etc. Members also care about other participants’ subjective responses to these factual contributions, in the form of their opinions (“The organic lettuce is worth the extra cost,”), emotions (“I love the new online CSA!”), and ideas (“We should write to our Congressional

location Location is the natural form to choose when you are trying to examine and compare information that comes from diverse sources or locales.

representatives about Obama’s new food safety policies because they might affect small farmers,” or “Try adding a dash of nutmeg to the creamed turnip recipe”). The community itself acts as an information filter, guaranteeing that a search conducted within the community will produce results more relevant to both topic and location. Several of the

alphabet This method lends itself to organizing extraordinarily large bodies of information, such as words in a dictionary or names in a telephone directory. [Alphabetical organization] works when the audience or readership encompasses a broad spectrum of society that might not understand classification by another form such as category or location.

categorization variables can be combined to provide more specific or enhanced results, for example, places that sell local food (location) can also display a list of available local produce (alphabet), which changes with the seasons (time, continuum), and this information can be presented in degrees of proximity to the user’s location (i.e. “What’s available closest to me?”) Combining factual information with discursive data might let a potential grocery shopper know if the store is clean, if the ambiance is pleasant, if the staff is knowledgeable and helpful, if the foods are delicious and fresh, and what kinds of dishes can be prepared from the available produce. Discursive information also gives consumers an opportunity to share information that is not readily available or apparent in a store or market. For example, farmers are not allowed to use signs stating

continuum This mode organizes items by magnitude from small to large, least expensive to most expensive, by order of importance, etc. It is the mode to use when you want to assign value or weight to information [...].

that a product is “organic” unless they have certification (USDA Agricultural Marketing Service).

(Wurman, 60-61)

share the information they gather about farmers’ growing practices, and farmers contributing to the

Many small farmers use organic methods, but cannot afford the financial burden of certification; others only use sprays sparingly before the edible parts of plants emerge; some refuse certification because they believe the government should use stricter standards for “organic.” One can learn this information through discussions with the farmers themselves, but the farmers are not allowed to label their products “almost organic” in writing at the point of sale. However, consumers can sustainable agriculture map can include that information in their profile. In other cases, discursive


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responses to a particular location or product might elicit a response or change from the particular

The discursive information generated by the sustainable food community is visually distinguished from the factual data projected by locations and organizations. The visualization explaining the community’s reaction to an event is different from a visualization showing the seasonal availability of certain foods (the latter type of data is contributed to the system by organizations like the State Farmers’ Market, which keeps detailed records of the products farmers bring to market).

Consumers like Derek and Michelle can view the location of Farmers Market producers (and their products) and their distance from the market.

collaborative production and information visualization | food information visualization

producer or distributor in question.


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In addition to browsing by category (e.g. produce), consumers can also peruse products by time (e.g. month/season). This visualization shows reported and predicted harvests to give market attendees an idea of what is currently available and what to expect in the future.


33 collaborative production and information visualization | food information visualization

A member perusing the wall interface at the State Farmers Market is able to visit a farm that contributes to the market. The concept of the seasonal foods visualization (left) is applied to the layout of the actual farm, so consumers can see which crops are currently available.


Virtual & Physical Community & Five Experiential Elements of Community

relationships

adapted from Five Experiential Elements of Community by Elizabeth Tunstall Presented at NC State University January 2008

In addition to promoting information exchange in the virtual realm, the system provides ways to assemble members face-to-face. Event invitations can be open to the whole community or focused on a specific sub-category (e.g. gardening). Mobile devices and public interfaces prompt users to meet and interact with each other, facilitating inperson introductions between members.

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Because certain physical locations support an individual’s or the community’s larger ideological aims, the system helps individuals prioritize their in-person interactions (e.g. patronizing a restaurant that sources mostly local ingredients).

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Organizational structure could refer to a mental map of the community that helps someone understand how an individual business or entity impacts or relates to the physical environment. Participants also see the virtual community’s response to events and entities in the physical realm.

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An understanding of how the sustainable food community’s structure has evolved, and how interacting with it/patronizing the business, etc could impact the larger community (e.g. keeping money within the local economy, benefitting farmers who then get to keep their land).

sc con

Agency can relate to the endorsement of or advocacy for specific locations in the physical environment, as well as organizations and businesses. Members of the community will feel empowered to make choices and to help others make choices that directly impact their physical environment and community.

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How can activity within the virtual environment be reflected in physical space? How does the virtual community produce physical community? virtually forging proximal bonds Social and information networks will become increasingly more specialized, and one of the ways they will become more specialized is through becoming more local. Location-specific informationseeking provides many social opportunities, with the added benefit of multi-sensory interaction with the physical world. Part of exploring a neighborhood, community, or city is discovering the people who live in it, even if they are not already on one’s “friend list.” As technology becomes more portable and even ubiquitous, the potential for mediated social discovery of new people and the physical environment increases: The direct, unmediated spaces we perceive with our senses create the places where we mature physically, morally, and socially. Even if modern life shrinks public spaces by building freeways, and even if the “collective mind” still offers much interaction among individuals through computers, the traditional meeting places still foster social bonds built on patience and on the trust of time spent together. Here is the bottom line for realists (Heim, 37).

Some traditional media outlets are beginning to comprehend this powerful aspect of Twitter; many newspapers have their own Twitter personae who “listen in” on tweets from people in their localities. The Chicago Tribune receives so many useful, realtime news tips from readers tweeting from their physical community that it recently replaced its editorial staff’s contact information (emails and phone numbers) with Twitter usernames. The newspaper’s acknowledgement of this many-to-many medium is an attempt to keep itself alive in an age of dying print news outlets (Pérez-Peña). However, it is also a reflection of the new trend of transparency and participation between corporations and consumers described in The Cluetrain Manifesto: “...employees are getting hyperlinked even

exchanges between virtual and physical communities | virtually forging proximal bonds

exchanges between virtual and physical communities


Kelly M. Murdoch-Kitt

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as markets are. Companies need to listen carefully to both. Mostly, they need to get out of the way so intranetworked employees can converse directly with internetworked markets” (Levine et al, 2001). The information economy breeds transience, and with it the places people used to meet neighbors, friends, and prospective mates are less available and/or declining (Harmon, 2003), (Putnam, 2000). “Traditional institutionalized means for getting people together are not working as well as they did previously” (Glenn, quoted in Harmon, 2003). On the other hand, the information economy also produces an increase in information workers, whose recreational and professional lives overlap because of their experiences and interactions with technology (Hardt and Negri). The prevalence of technology work spurs changes in opinions and perceptions, causing people to have a normative attitude toward online environments. Studies show that using the internet for social purposes generally benefits the in-person social lives of most users. In a 2000 study conducted by the Pew American Life and Internet Project, Internet users “reported far more offline social contact than non-users.” (Raney, 2000) “It’s clear that Internet users have a more robust social network than nonInternet users,’’ said Lee Rainie, director of the project. ‘’There doesn’t seem like there’s any diminution of social networks because people are spending a lot of time online’’ (quoted in Raney, 2000). legitimizing the latent group Unless it is a planned meeting, encountering a person face-to-face whom one has only previously known in online space can be awkward. There is no particular protocol for dealing with this scenario, probably because it is a relatively new social phenomenon. However, some sites have been created to deal directly with this specific challenge. Launched in 2002, Meetup.com is an example of a site that mediates this virtual-to-physical connection. Created by Scott Heiferman, who originally developed Blogger (one of the first open-source blogging platforms), Meetup.com did not initially make a huge splash. However, it picked up momentum during the 2004 presidential campaign thanks to candidate Howard Dean, who leveraged the power of Meetup to gather supporters in various cities across America. Inspired by Putnam’s book, Bowling Alone (cited earlier in this paper), Heiferman saw the Internet’s potential to reconnect America’s communities by matching groups of people with common interests who are also proximate to each other, in other words, to “use the internet to get off the internet” (meetup.com). Meetup enables anyone to start a group, and activities range from viewing independent films to programming, practicing foreign languages, scrapbooking, observing obscure religions, and eating. An “organizer” (or multiple organizers) posts and manages comments and responses to the events online. The events are open for anyone to join: anyone searching Meetup may attend a gathering within any category of interest in any location. Often, discussions will begin on the site based on comments and feedback about past and upcoming events, which sometimes provide an entry point for face-to-face conversations when Meetup members assemble in person. Sometimes the organizer will wear a Meetup.com t-shirt or hold a sign, but most of the time event attendees recognize each


37

other from the photos they use as icons

latent group

gathering. Beyond a group’s online commentary, the activity or event itself

proximal community

brings members together, giving them a shared experience through which they can connect to each other. One of the surprising outcomes of Meetup that Heiferman did not foresee was its ability to assemble not only the types of groups he predicted, but also many types which he did not predict. Shirky refers to these as “latent groups,” in which the members “had things in common, but the cost and hassle of finding one another was too high. Second, the society they lived in didn’t make it easy for them to find one another” (Shirky, 206).

proximal community

Within the first year of its launch, some of the most active group topics included Witches, Slashdot, Pagans, Bloggers, Xena, Ex-Jehova’s Witnesses, Star Trek, and Tori Amos. “This list is unlike any list of American groups ever assembled […] because it demonstrates that Meetup’s convening power lies not in recreating older civic groups but in creating new ones” (Shirky, 198). More traditional civic groups already have networking capabilities and resolved issues of assembly, which enabled them to exist in the first place. Meetup puts this social convening power in the hands of groups that never could have previously existed without this technological aid. “The net effect is that it’s easier to like people who are odd in the same ways you are odd, but it’s harder to find them” (Shirky, 200). In contemporary American society, rejecting the simulacra of processed food is considered odd, and while there are many who engage in this oppositional reading of the food industry, there are no socially designated days, times, or locations for this group to assemble. With only loose and sporadic connections between then, the individuals who support sustainable agriculture in Raleigh, N.C. constitute a latent group. Heiferman’s invention brings to mind Chris Anderson’s Long Tail theory of economics, as it could translate to the array of personality traits and potential social connections within our specific geography. As they wander further from the beaten path, [people] discover their taste is not as mainstream as they thought (or as they had been led to believe by marketing, a lack of alternatives, and a hit-driven culture). […] Many of our assumptions about popular taste are actually artifacts of poor supply-and-demand matching—a market response to inefficient distribution (Anderson, 2004).

simulacra A simulacrum (singular) is not a representation of something, but is more difficult to distinguish from the real. Hence, it can be considered to be a kind of fake real that could potentially supercede the real. [...] The term “simulation” is often used to describe aspects of post-modern culture in which copies and realities get blurred (Sturken and Cartwright, 366).

oppositional reading In Stuart Hall’s formulation of thee potential positions for the viewer/ consumer of mass culture, the oppositional reading is one in which consumers fully reject the dominant meaning of a cultural product. This can take the form not only of disagreeing with a message but also of deliberately ignoring it (Sturken and Cartwright, 361).

exchanges between virtual and physical communities | legitimizing the latent group

on the site or from attending a previous


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Above: The Triangle Vegetarian & Vegan Meetup and the Raleigh Environmental Action Circle for Humanity advertise the same event, illustrating overlapping interests on Meetup.com. Below: The Triangle Environmental Network advertises an event on local foods that would probably interest the other two groups.


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Though Anderson describes this economic theory using examples from the entertainment industry, their off-beat interests accessible to others to bring together likely friend matches. “…we are entering a world of abundance. And the differences are profound” (Anderson, 2004). Sites like Meetup help people find the similarities in their differences—what may seem like an obscure interest to some becomes an asset to others: it can bring together new groups who never would have otherwise met and who are likely to share other common interests and ideologies. meetup produces meatspace The success of Meetup relies on its members coming together in meatspace, (physical space), but these groups of people would probably never find each other or consider assembling without the mediation of Meetup’s online community. The communication tools currently available to

meatspace “real” life, i.e. the place where your body is made of flesh, not bytes (Dodero, 2006)

the online community are mostly text-based forums, and information exchanges and learning opportunities are mostly limited to the in-person gatherings the groups organizes through the site. Also, there are many similar groups in a given geographic area who have overlapping interests, but are often unaware of the existence of the others. There is currently no way to preserve and grow the knowledge base of a particular Meetup group as it pertains to its specific physical community so that others may benefit from the information or to promote ongoing learning exchanges. The physical gatherings would probably also benefit not only from ongoing discussion and exchange, but from a visual record of that group’s activities within its physical community. A visual explanation of the community’s development and behavior over time might also help members to conceive of their group as a community instead of sporadic entertainment, and help them feel more like a cohesive and legitimate assembly within their physical community. There are many other examples of virtual common interest groups coming together to form proximate groups that continue to be mediated by the Internet. The aforementioned Flickr.com is one example of another site that has evolved into communities, including groups that periodically meet offline. While flickr is a photo sharing community and therefore does not have the same mission as Meetup, countless topic- and interest-based in-person gatherings have resulted as a side effect of flickr’s multitudes of self-creating, self-maintaining groups and “photo pools” within the virtual community. Flickr promotes the offline group gatherings through its site, but these are organized and managed by flickr users; the flickr.com staff merely promotes the gatherings. An excerpt from the highly

Seattle Flickr Meetups (flickr.com)

exchanges between virtual and physical communities | meetup produces meatspace

it is easy to understand how people could have “niche markets,” too, and how the Internet makes


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organized Seattle flickr meetups page describes some of the activities offered to the group (which

Kelly M. Murdoch-Kitt

currently has over 1,700 members): “We hold at least two “official” meetups per month: an all-ages photostroll on the third Saturday afternoon of every month, and a Brews & Views adult-only social event on the last Thursday of the month. We alternate locations to keep things fresh. In addition, we have several “MSEs” each month. These Member Sponsored Events cover a whole range of options from hiking to strobist events to parties or potlucks” (flickr.com). The events are just as much about socializing (if not more so) than photography, and the Seattle club’s page explicitly states that “This is NOT a place for Seattle pictures. This is a place to post pictures from Seattle Flickr meetups ONLY.” This illustrates the intertwined nature of virtual and physical communities: these flickr members created a physical community based on their mutual interest in the virtual community of flickr, and create a specific virtual community within flickr that reflects the physical community that they were able to create because of flickr. Brightkite.com also attempts to discover what happens when a virtual community is specifically focused around physical location, but it lacks the focus of a community of interest. Accessible via its website or mobile devices, it relies on the same type of bite-sized updates as Twitter, but Brightkite’s updates are strictly geographic. Users can add comments, commentary, feedback and images to their location updates, which will theoretically create a rich map for one’s friends and contacts to

The “people near me” view mapped on Brightkite.com


peruse. Depending on the frequency with which one sends updates, it can also act as a personal

features and allows one to control the information released to different levels of friends, contacts, and general users. Though security concerns are understandable, it seems that this site, like many other social communities, will be most effective when it develops a larger member base and those members are sharing more information. physical manifestation of virtual spaces A saturation of users enables geographically specific gatherings and encourages the creation of new in-person groups; location-based communities increase the potential for meetings and for overlap between virtual and in-person communities. “Structural features of new media induce social change by enabling new forms of communication and cultivating distinctive skills and sensibilities” (DiMaggio, 309). Using the term ‘offline’ to describe meetings of these groups in physical space will become increasingly outdated as Internet-enabled mobile devices penetrate the market and become the new standard. Though some of the members will be meeting face-to-face, they will likely still be connected to the Internet and to other members of the virtual community, therefore making the term ‘offline’ an inaccurate description for this type of gathering. In the developed world, the experience of the average twenty-five-year-old is one of substantial overlap between online and offline friends and colleagues. The overlap is so great, in fact, that both the word and the concept of “cyberspace” have fallen into disuse. The internet augments real-world social life rather than providing an alternative to it. Instead of becoming a separate cyberspace, our electronic networks are becoming deeply embedded in real life (Shirky, 196).

Raleigh’s sustainable food mapping community relies heavily on the interplay between the physical, built environment and its virtual counterpart as well as people and their virtual identities. A saturation of users enables geographically specific gatherings and encourages the creation of new in-person groups; location-based communities increase the potential for meetings and for the intersection of virtual and in-person communities. The physical locations of these gatherings reflect the activity of their associated networks as well. Ubiquitous computing makes it possible for a building not only to detect our presence, but to know our interests and what information we might seek. The location itself can become part of the interface, reflecting the activity within it as well as conversations and feedback that pertain to it. The shift from broadcast media to a “many-to-many” communication model has also impacted the relationship between consumers and businesses. Consumers now expect a greater degree of input and control over the many of the products they purchase (though I would say this awareness probably applies more to electronics than food), and they want to be able to conduct a two-way conversation with a company. Services such as Get Satisfaction formalize this trend by providing specific communication tools for both customers and companies; they describe themselves as “a

exchanges between virtual and physical communities | physical manifestation of virtual spaces

log of one’s routes and travel patterns. Unlike previous incarnations of geo-centric communities (such as dodgeball.com or the defunct meetro.com), Brightkite has carefully considered its privacy

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Above: Get Satisfaction encourages members to ask questions, submit ideas, report problems, and give praise.

Below: A problem “room” displays its negative “mood” (lower right ). Discussion of the problem follows below, with many user-contributed suggestions.

Above: Official company representatives check in periodically to assist customers.

Below: Several customers work to help each other and think they may have found a solution to their problem.


community that helps people to get the most from the products they use, and where companies are what they call “The Company-Customer Pact,” a set of guidelines for productive communication between the two parties. Customers receive responses from official company representatives as well as other customers, solving problems through crowdsourcing. Get Satisfaction’s search features make it easier to seek or find information about a certain product or company than burrowing through many layers of a company’s official website (and many official sites do not have any kind of comparable ‘help’ section). With this new era of “customer service,” it is not difficult to make the leap from making this information publicly available online to making it publicly available in the environment (e.g. at the point of sale), or applying this type of crowdsourcing to locations other than traditional retail venues. Through integrated social networks like the Raleigh sustainable foods community, one could access information from different groups of people who share one’s values and priorities. Within a given location, one could see how other members interact with, rate, or respond to a particular place, a product within that place, or an organization. Patti Maes and Pranav Mistry’s work with wearable technology as a “sixth sense” device at MIT proves that any surface can become an interface. While their work focuses on personal, portable devices, the focus of this area of my design investigation is an interactive, public commentary system situated within every public place. One does not have to own a special device or belong to one of the networks in order to access or benefit from the information contributed by the networks. As video walls, LCD panels, video projections, and large-scale computer graphic displays become greater and greater parts of our lived environments, we enter a new era of architecture, one in which the design of our lived spaces reflects and incorporates the electronic information and imaging technologies that are ever more central to our lives (Lunenfeld, 11).

Because the system is accessible in public space, it can serve as a forum and can involve multiple participants at once, who can either use the system independently, for their own individual purposes, or interact with it cooperatively. They might research a product together, or record a conversation about their impressions or experiences at that location (or an event at that location).

exchanges between virtual and physical communities | physical manifestation of virtual spaces

encouraged to get real with their customers” (getsatistcation.com). Get Satisfaction also promotes

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After watching a recently posted video with one of the farmers selling at the market today, Michelle chooses to locate his booth at the market.

good neighbor farms #34

working today:

lou carter


45 exchanges between virtual and physical communities | physical manifestation of virtual spaces

Michelle visits the farm’s booth at the market. She chats with the farmer, and checks out the fruits and veggies before making her purchase.


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Half-eaten cake donut Raleigh, N.C. November 2007


47 food as myth | the design of food

food as myth the design of food In the United States, processed food is big business: “About 90 percent of the money that Americans spend on food is used to buy processed food” (Schlosser, 121). It is also a thoroughly designed product. Industrialized processes construct a visual, sensory, olfactory, and gustative myth of food. Science attempts to rival nature in terms of color, flavor, shelf-life, and taste. The more a particular food is processed, the greater the likelihood that it has lost significant amounts of nutrients, represents a greater transport distance, and that its ingredients and production methods will be nearly impossible to trace. “A vast industry has arisen in the United States to make processed food palatable. Without this flavor industry, today’s fast food would not exist. The names of the leading American fast-food chains and their best-selling menu items have become embedded in our popular culture and famous worldwide. But few people can name the companies that manufacture fast food’s taste” (Schlosser, 121). Those manufactured tastes attempt to create an idealized food product that has changed Americans’ cultural expectations of food, along with their waistlines. Well-designed fast food has a fragrance and flavor all its own, a fragrance and flavor only nominally connected to hamburgers or French fries or for that matter to any particular food. Certainly the hamburgers and fries you make at home don’t have it. And yet Chicken McNuggets do, even thought they’re ostensibly and entirely different food made from a different species (Pollan).

The reason it is impossible to replicate the flavor of many packaged, pre-prepared, or fast foods is because they incorporate a variety of engineered ingredients that the home chef could never acquire. In 2008, the international flavor and fragrance industry generated over $2 billion in sales (Leffingwell & Associates, 2009), a large percentage from fast foods. “Whatever it is (surely food scientists know), for countless millions of people living now, this generic fast-food flavor is one of the unerasable smells and tastes of childhood—which makes it a kind of comfort food. Like other comfort foods, it supplies (besides nostalgia) a jolt of carbohydrates and fat, which, some scientists


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now believe, relieve stress and bathe the brain in chemicals that make it feel good” (Pollan, 111). Temporarily comforting though it may be, the average fast food meal is an abstraction of food. “The initial purchase of a food item may be driven by its packaging or appearance, but subsequent purchases are determined mainly by its taste. ” (Schlosser, 121). Because recipes are unable to be patented under U.S. copyright laws (Pollan), food companies covertly develop products, guarding their recipes and—in the case of the global fragrance and flavor dynasties—their clientele. In some cases, such as the the Bell Institute, General Mills’ research and development laboratory, all aspects of post-harvest food design are housed under one roof. “Here nine hundred food scientiests spend their days designing the future of food—its flavor, texture, and packaging.” (Pollan 92) The foods engineered at The Bell Institute are fully conceptualized, painstakingly constructed, thoroughly tested, and articulately marketed, all from one gigantic laboratory, though its packaging may conjure pastoral dreamscapes or cozy kitchens. That perhaps is what the industrial food chain does best: obscure the histories of the foods it produces by processing them to such an extent that they appear as pure products of culture rather than nature—things made from plants and animals (Pollan, 115)

Produce and other seemingly unprocessed foods are also part of the illusion. Shipments from international farms guarantee a steady supply of fruits and vegetables, often harvested and shipped before they are fully ripe. This illusion of variety and luxury consumes a large amount of resources in exchange for very little return in terms of flavor or nutritional value. There are no seasons in the American supermarket. Now there are tomatoes all year-round, grown halfway around the world, picked when it was green, and ripened with ethylene gas. Although it looks like a tomato, it’s kind of a notional tomato. I mean, it’s the idea of a tomato (Kenner, 2008).


keeping fresh food in business to smell and taste better than anything one could hope to prepare for at home, and produce from all corners of the globe, it can be difficult to discern real foods from its simulacra. It is also difficult to account for all of the energy invested in these foods and all of the distance they have traveled, all the while offering consumers so little in terms of nutritional value. American consumers, often complacent

In 1940, one calorie of fuel produced 2.3 calories of food. Today, 10 calories of fuel are invested in producing just one calorie of food (Holcomb).

and enraptured by convenience and low cost, do not reflect on the complexity or intrinsic value of their diet. There are occasional moments of alertness: “episodes focusing public attention on pesticides, food poisoning, genetically modified crops, and mad cow disease serve as “teachable moments” about the industrial food system and its alternatives” (Pollan, 153). A growing number of consumers eat outside of the industrialized food system, informed either by these “teachable moments” or a range of reasons, from increased personal health and well-being to supporting the local economy and local businesses (keeping food dollars in the state; giving more to the growers). Others have broader environmental concerns about the use of resources, the carbon and water “footprints” of both individuals and entire nations. Many have the desire to eat lower on the food chain, supporting more natural food production that is closely connected to the land and can support itself without the intervention of thousands of meticulous food engineers. Food produced and consumed closer to home requires less post-harvest “design” because it is eaten the way food is naturally intended to be consumed: fresh and ripe. These two qualities give food

footprint a measure of the way human activities affect the environment and natural resources in terms of consumption and waste. For example, a “carbon footprint” describes the amount of carbon emitted into the atmosphere by one’s daily activities, such as driving a car or consuming goods. A “water footprint” describes the amount of water directly used or invested in one’s daily activities, particularly food consumption. Sustainable food consumption greatly reduces these environmental footprints.

The McDonald’s McGriddle sandwich Raleigh, N.C. December 2007

food as myth | keeping fresh food in business

With so many options of things that are made to look fresh and colorful, designed

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a flavor that science still cannot match, a flavor linked to higher nutritional content as well as the earth that nourished the food into being. Eating requires us to make choices that dramatically affect our natural resources as well as our personal health. As Wendell Berry writes, “Eaters must understand that eating takes place inescapably in the world, that it is inescapably an agricultural act, and that how we eat determines, to a considerable extent, how the world is used” (Berry, 49). Consumers are the focus of this design investigation because, whether they realize it or not, their choices they make give them the most power within the agricultural system. What they eat could keep a family farm in business, instead of a factory. The types of food they choose can preserve entire species by ensuring their continued production. Food choices can be difficult to make when as consumers are constantly

Taking into account the food they grow on their own farm as well as their local food purchases, Barbara Kingsolver calculates that her family of four ate for a year from the products of about one acre of land:

By contrast, current nutritional consumption in the U.S. requires an average of 1.2 cultivated acres for every citizen—about 4.8 acres for a family of four. (Among other things, it takes space to grow corn syrup for that hypothetical family’s 219 gallons of soda.) These estimates become more meaningful when placed next to another prediction: in 2050, the amount of U.S. farmland available per citizen will be only 0.6 acres (Kingsolver, 343).

bombarded with the sophisticated, omnipresent, and highly designed arrangement of messaging, texture, and flavor of processed foods. Currently, information about sustainable food systems are not part of our mainstream cultural lexicon. “Farmers aren’t good at marketing themselves,” said organic farmer Richard Holcomb, owner of Coon Rock Farm, during his presentation at the University of North Carolina. “Competing with economics and scale is impossible, so farmers must get better at selling directly.” Holcomb succeeds because he rejects the conventional system. Instead of going through a middleman, he sells directly to restaurants and individual consumers, who learn about Coon Rock Farm by word of mouth, or by eating at one of the locally owned restaurants supplied by the farm. The sustainable agriculture movement requires community in order to perpetuate itself: people learn about food primarily from their interactions with other people.


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eating closer to home: sustainable agriculture in n.c. debate over farming practices, use of resources, and food quality. The traditional institutional models formed by N.C.’s major research universities favor teaching industrial farming methods, beholden to the agribusinesses that fund them. Commercially produced food is controlled by just a handful of conglomerate companies; a small number of major corporations are also responsible for most of the biotechnology research, inventions and patents in U.S. agribusiness. (Most of these businesses have at least one office in North Carolina.) Though the state has passed its own legislation to preserve family farms and the N.C. Department of Agriculture works with small farms to help them stay in business, most of the legislation in the federal Farm Bill favors the large corporations (food manufacturers and factory farmers), who can afford to send full-time lobbyists to Washington, D.C., and have large marketing and advertising budgets at their disposal. Though some Raleigh-area residents have shown interest and activity in sustainable agriculture for several years, enthusiasm has recently and dramatically increased. In conducting initial research for this thesis, I had the opportunity to attend events around the Triangle area, meet many experts, and interview people from many areas of

Major territories are most conservative in their creation. It is through minor territories— in the way they are constantly linking with other territories creating new territories— that revolutions take place. (Dolphijn, 63)

the local sustainable food community. These experiences were not only valuable for their intrinsic content, but also because they revealed to me the true fragmentation of the sustainable agriculture community in this area. There are many people in small pockets who care deeply about this topic, and they collectively possess a great deal of knowledge and expertise. Typical of latent groups, most of these smaller groups are not connected to each other, and there is no central location (physical or virtual) or method for them to communicate with or disseminate information to each other. Beyond interests and informal groups, there are also many organizations, but they are typically in conversation with each other and other “experts.” Consumers are either unaware of the organizations’ existence, or do not consider them when looking for information resources. Even the organizations have difficulty keeping track of each others’ projects, events, goals, and progress. There were multiple occasions when I spoke to people who would be considered experts in this community and discovered that they were totally unaware of relevant projects or events near to them, though they all do their best to stay as active with the sustainable food community as possible. In the cycle of social movements, once a movement emerges, it must coalesce before it can become bureaucratized. Opportunities for mentorship, communication, and building collective knowledge within a specific foodshed can help this group overcome its current state of fragmentation and gain additional support from new members as it moves towards changing policy.

food as myth | eating closer to home: sustainable agriculture in n.c.

North Carolina is at an interesting agricultural crossroads. There are two primary camps in this


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Gardening tools SEEDS, Durham, N.C., April 2009.


53 in closing

in closing Continued work on this topic might address how the community could actually produce physical artifacts, such as printed shopping lists, to exchange with other members. Another idea for physical artifacts was signage or tags so that community members could actually mark their physical environment as it relates to sustainable or urban agriculture. This particular idea arose from picking mulberries from a public (city) tree near my house. Every time I went go to collect berries, pedestrians and motorists would stop to ask what I was doing, if the berries were edible, what I would make with them—some would even ask for a description of their flavor. Some of them remarked that they had passed this tree many times and wondered about it. If there was some way for me to record my responses to these questions and leave them with the tree, other people could benefit from this knowledge. This type of tagging could possibly extend beyond the physical constraints of something like the Yellow Arrow project, as participants could leave digital residue along with a physical marker, providing opportunities for multiple (low-tech vs high-tech) readings (yellowarrow.net/v3/ ). I would like to further explore other teachable moments within the mapping system. Within the sustainable food topic, there are many opportunities to use the map to trace or reveal the natural histories of certain meals (Pollan) and show contrasts between fast foods and their slow food counterparts. Design-wise, additional projects to explore include detailing the process of adding new categories to one’s array of interests or proposing new categories within the community. Additionally, I would like to pursue visualizations of the net effects of the community. Functional, structural, & policy changes could provide interesting visual opportunities, particularly as these evolve over time. The recruitment and engagement of those who are unaware/uninformed potential members is also an area of interest. This investigation worked with the assumption that participants are already motivated/interested, to varying degrees. However, I wonder how the system could specifically target and engage those who are “not ready to know” (Rose).


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This project was originally conceived as a larger system, which I called “Community Maps.� Within this larger network of maps (encompassing a wide variety of topics), the Raleigh sustainable foods boundary object artifacts or ideas that are shared but understood differently by multiple communities. Though each group attaches a different meaning to the boundary object, it serves as a common point of reference and a means of translation (Morville, 119).

map was just one community within a larger network of mapping communities. Within a larger system, design would focus on how boundary objects (Morville) within the community can be used to demonstrate connections between related communities and overlapping interests. For example, many people interested in sustainable agriculture are also interested in alternative modes of transportation: public transportation, walking, cycling, etc. Where are the physical places where these interests might intersect or overlap? Creating complimentary maps that are differentiated from each other could be an additional category for visual studies. Differentiating the interfaces between inputs (mobile, browser, wall) was not an area I initially set out to explore, but it presented itself during the course of the project. It is also an area ripe for visual exploration. At this moment, due to the advent of the iPhone, mobile devices can do or show exactly the same things as browsers. However, designers are in the position to question whether or not it is best for users if these interfaces display exactly the same way. There are advantages and disadvantages, and it is up to designers to consider what is most useful for the type of information and environment (and the type of person trying to access or interact with it).

Raleigh area computer scientist and photographer Tim Lytvinenko explains advantages and functional differences in similar and varied interface designs between a laptop browser and mobile device. Personal conversation with Tim Lytvinenko. 13 April 2009.


feasibility incorporated into a browser, so that one could more easily add and share content pertaining to specific maps from a laptop or mobile device. There is precedent for this built-in accessibility in current social bookmarking/ranking tools, such as StumbleUpon (stumbleupon.com) and Delicious (delicious.com), which are built into the browser frame, as well as Glue (adaptiveblue.com), which actually responds to and interacts with the content inside the browser frame. These existing services, as well as others like Twitter and Get Satisfaction, could provide some of the user-contributed content to this environment. There could be reciprocity in these contributions: responses and comments generated within the Community Maps system could also be transmitted back to these external services. These existing services incorporate tagging and categorization, and through them people exchange a range of media, data, and different types of feedback. These characteristics make this content ideal for populating an external system such as Community Maps, while Community Maps provides a unique way to view and interact with the information and the people who contribute it. The previously mentioned Get Satisfaction formally frames the new paradigm of interaction between businesses and consumers predicted in books like The Cluetrain Manifesto. Not only does it give customers an opportunity to contribute questions, problems, praise, and ideas, but they can receive responses and help from both official company representatives as well as other customers. There is a more direct and open channel of communication between the businesses and the people who use their products, which is an underlying stipulation of the sustainable foods community (and other categories within a larger Community Maps system). In my studies, I explored the topic of identity primarily from the perspective of the consumers. However, the other classifications of participants, such as organizations and businesses, could benefit from extended visual exploration in the realm of identity development, taking into account their visual and intangible relationships with consumers.

in closing | feasibility

As part of a larger system, I also envisioned ways that contribution tools could be

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Chioggia beet seedlings SEEDS, Durham, N.C., April 2009.


57 bibliography

bibliography persona development social network theory new consumer model

sustainable agriculture mapping data semiotics ubiquitous computing

sustainable agriculture

Alan, Cooper. The Inmates are Running the Asylum. Indianapolis, IN: Sams, 1999. Anderson, Chris. “The Long Tail.” Wired. Oct. 2004. 22 Apr. 2009 <http://www.wired.com/wired/archive/12.10/tail.html>. Berry, Wendell. What are People For? Essays. San Francisco: North Point Press, 1990. Bertin, Jacques. Semiology of Graphics. Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1983. Bolter, Jay David, and Richard Grusin. Remediation: Understanding New Media. New York: The MIT Press, 2000. Brodie, Brenda. Tour of South Eastern Efforts Developing Sustainable Spaces, Inc. (SEEDS). Personal interview. Durham, N.C. 30 March 2009. Among its many educational initiatives, this hands-on learning environment hires inner-city youth to cultivate cut flowers, herbs, and a variety of organic vegetables to sell at the Durham Farmers’ Market.

sustainable agriculture online social interaction

online social interaction

food and culture

sustainability and design

Cavan, Meghan. “Why I joined a CSA.” Personal interview. Raleigh, N.C. 1 February 2009. DiMaggio, Paul and Eszter Hargittai, W. Russell Neuman, John P. Robinson. “Social Implications of the Internet.” Annual Review of Sociology, Vol. 27, (2001), pp. 307-336. <http://jstor.org/stable/2678624> Accessed: July 17, 2008. Dodero, Camille. “Does Your Life Suck?” The Boston Phoenix 17 July 2006. 6 Apr. 2009 <http://thephoenix.com/Boston/Life/17440-Does-your-life-suck/>. Dolphijn, Rick. Foodscapes: Towards a Deleuzian Ethics of Consumption. New York: Eburon, Delft, 2005. Dougherty, Brian, and Celery Design Collaborative. Green Graphic Design. New York: Allworth Press, 2008.

While virtual reality would replace the physical world with a simulacrum, telepresence bring the physical world into the virtual environment (and vice versa) (Bolter & Grusin, p. 214). SEEDS is a non-profit community garden whose goal is to teach people to care for the earth, themselves and each other through a variety of garden-based programs (seedsnc.org) .

Every time I go to the farmers market or I buy organic food from the grocery store, it’s still a treat for me. It’s a luxury that I know many people don’t have or don’t care about, but I understand now the value of what these foods will do for my body, and I think paying a little extra for them is worth every penny (Cavan).


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Eubanks, Mary. “What’s in your grocery cart? Potential Risks of Genetically-Modified Food.” Academy Nights. Durham Academy, Durham, N.C. 27 January 2009.

sustainable agriculture

Dr. Mary Eubanks is a biology professor at Duke University who used to work on genetically modified corn products for a prominent bioengineering company. She now only manipulates corn genetics naturally, through cross-breeding for desired traits, etc. She discussed her experience with the bioengineering industry and explained its threat to biodiversity, humans, and the food supply in general. Her lecture closely paralleled the historical and political events described in King Corn and The Future of Food, which was interesting because she had never seen either film. The contents of the lecture and the discussion that followed made me consider the tension between the groups advocating for locally produced and organic foods and those pushing for ‘engineered’ agriculture.

Fine, Allison. Momentum: Igniting Social Change in the Connected Age. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2006.

networked activism

Fine, Allison. Social Citizens (Beta). Publication. 2008. The Case Foundation. 2 Apr. 2009 <http://www.socialcitizens.org/paper>.

networked activism

Fogg, B. J. Persuasive Technology: Using Computers to Change What We Think and Do. Amsterdam: Morgan Kaufmann, 2003.

persuasion and media

Froehlich, Jon, Joachim Neumann, and Nuria Oliver. “Measuring the Pulse of the City through Shared Bicycle Programs.” Proc. of UrbanSense08, Raleigh, NC. 2008. 16-20.

mapping data activity maps physical environments

The Future of Food. Dir. Deborah Koons. DVD. Lily Films, 2004.

sustainable agriculture

This film investigates the ways our food production system has profoundly changed on the genetic level. The film explains how intellectual property law has changed our food system by granting patents for genetic modifications, essentially reinforcing the cultivation of genetically engineered crops.

Networks have become the dominant structures of cultural, economic and military power. Yet this power remains largely invisible. How can the networked society be represented? And how can it be navigated, appropriated, reshaped in its turn? (Holmes, “Counter Cartographies,” Else/Where: Mapping p. 20)

Granovetter, Mark. “The Impact of Social Structure on Economic Outcomes.” Journal of Economic Perspectives 19: 33-50. Leader Values. 6 Apr. 2009 <http://www.leader-values.com/Content/detail.asp?ContentDetailID=990>. Greenfield, Adam. Everyware: The Dawning Age of Ubiquitous Computing. Grand Rapids: New Riders, 2006. Hall, Peter and Janet Abrams, Eds. Else/Where: Mapping New Cartographies of Networks and Territories. Minneapolis: Univ Minnesota Design Institute, 2006.

loose networks

ubiquitous computing

mapping data, networks. & experience physical environments

The writings in Else/Where: Mapping address the invisibility of networked culture and the connection between visualizing information and generating new knowledge. Many of these point to the interplay between the physical and virtual environments.

Hall, Stuart, ed. Representation: cultural representations and signifying practices. Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications & Open University, 1997.

semiotics


online social interaction

social interaction online/offline

Harmon, Katharine A. You are here personal geographies and other maps of the imagination. New York, N.Y: Princeton Architectural Press, 2004.

59 bibliography

mapping data, networks, & experience

Harmon, Amy. “Online Dating Sheds Its Stigma as Losers.com.” The New York Times. June 29, 2003. <http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9401E2DC173AF93AA15755C0A9659C8 B63&sec=&spon=&pagewanted=1> Accessed: June 29, 2008.

Hess, Whitney. “How Twitter Has Changed My Life.” Weblog post. Pleasure and Pain: Measuring the impact of new technology on human experience. 20 July 2008. <http://whitneyhess.com/ blog/2008/07/how-twitter-has-changed-my-life/> Hess, Whitney. “The Meaning of Friend.” Weblog post. Pleasure and Pain: Measuring the impact of new technology on human experience. April 2008. 6 July 2008. <http://whitneyhess.com/ blog/2008/04/the-meaning-of-friend/> Hess, Whitney. “The Stranger Aversion.” Weblog post. 5 June 2008. 6 July 2008. <http:// whitneyhess.com/blog/2008/06/the-stranger-aversion/>

sustainable agriculture

social interaction online/offline crowdsourcing

social interaction online/offline

sustainable agriculture

Holcomb, Richard, and Greg Overbeck. “Retail.” Robertson Seminars on Sustainable Food Systems. Five-part seminar series. University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. Murphey Hall 116. 4 February 2009. Honigman, Daniel. “Chicago Tribune Breaks News with Twitter Posse.” Poynter Online — E-Media Tidbits. August 14, 2008. <http://www.poynter.org/column. asp?id=31&aid=148745> Accessed: August 20, 2008. Jesella, Kara. “The Friendster Effect.” AlterNet. January 30, 2006. <http://www.alternet.org/ story/31103/> Accessed: August 23, 2008. King Corn. Dir. Aaron Woolf. Perf. Ian Cheney and Curtis Ellis. DVD. ITVS, 2007. King Corn does a good job of explaining the history and evolution (or devolution) of farming in America, discussing the positive and negative effects of the industrialization process along the way. The protagonists also strive to explain how legislation (Earl Butz) changed the face of farming and ultimately produced the corn surplus we have today, and how that corn finds its way into so many of the other foods we eat (brief discussions of containment feedlots for livestock and corn syrup). Also includes an explanation of subsidies for commodity crops, commentary about monocropping, and why Iowa farmers can no longer feed themselves.

sustainable agriculture

Kingsolver, Barbara, Camille Kingsolver, and Steven L. Hopp. Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life. New York: Harper Perennial, 2008. Barbara Kingsolver and her family chronicle their transition from consuming foods that traveled great distances or were cultivated under artificial circumstances in Arizona to living off the land at their farm in southwestern Virginia. Kingsolver’s enthusiasm for the land, plants, animals—and, of course, the food—makes a wonderful, first-person case for the benefits of sustainable agriculture. This book, along with Pollan’s Ominvore’s Dilemma, are part of the local/sustainable foods canon.

learning

Lave, Jean, and Etienne Wenger. Situated Learning: Legitimate Peripheral Participation. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1991.

We hoped a year away from industrial foods would taste so good, we might actually enjoy it. The positives, rather than the negatives, ultimately nudged us to step away from the agribusiness supply line and explore the local food landscape. Food is the rare moral arena in which the ethical choice is generally the one more likely to make you groan with pleasure. Why resist that? (Kingsolver, 22)


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Levine, Rick, et al. The Cluetrain Manifesto: the End of Business as Usual. Cambridge, Mass: Perseus Books, 2000.

crowdsourcing social network theory new consumer model

Li, Charlene. “The future of social networks: Social networks will be like air.” Weblog post. Forrester Research Blog. 6 Mar. 2008. 5 Apr. 2009 <http://blogs.forrester.com/ground swell/2008/03/the-future-of-s.html>.

social network theory

Lunenfeld, Peter, Ed. The Digital Dialectic: New Essays on New Media. New York: The MIT Press, 2000.

online/offline environments

Merkle, Erich R. and Rhonda A. Richardson. “Digital Dating and Virtual Relating: Conceptualizing Computer Mediated Romantic Relationships.” Family Relations > Vol. 49, No. 2 (Apr., 2000), pp. 187-192

social interaction online/offline

Merrill, Maximilian A. “Local Food and North Carolina Department of Agriculture.” Personal interview. Raleigh, N.C. 30 Jan. 2009.

sustainable agriculture

Because agriculture is the number one industry in North Carolina, I wanted to learn our state government’s perspective on farming. Maximilian Merrill gave me a better idea of land use issues happening with N.C. farmers. I learned that N.C. is losing a lot of farmland to development because the land is worth more than the crops the farmers can cultivate on it. There is some consolidation (particularly of commodity crops), but there is also an act to protect family farms, and an organization that tries to match farmers with landowners who want to use or rent their land for farming purposes (N.C. farm transition network). He talked about the risks involved in cultivating crops for which one could not receive insurance or subsidy, and the difficulty in marketing directly to customers. We briefly discussed the “Got to be N.C.” campaign, which aims to draw attention to locally produced goods in stores around the state. Stained glass at the NC Department of Agriculture building, Raleigh, N.C., February 2009.

Merrill also discussed some of the ways environmental regulations could be potentially ruinous to small farmers. For example, a regulation to implement stream buffers could be prohibitively expensive for small dairy farmers or ranchers. Projects like this need to be gradually phased in and incorporate a budget to educate and assist so that the large farms (which are the usually the prime target for the legislation in the first place) are regulated and the smaller ones can stay in business.

Miluzzo, Emiliano and James Oakley, Hong Lu, Nicholas D. Lane, Ronald A. Peterson, Andrew T. Campbell. “Evaluating the iPhone as a Mobile Platform for People-Centric Sensing Applications.” Proc. of UrbanSense08, Raleigh, NC. 2008. 16-20. Moggridge, Bill. Designing Interactions. New York: The MIT Press, 2006.

sentient mobile technology

service design

Chapter 6, “Services,” is valuable particularly for its discussion of process. The case studies in this section place a huge emphasis on understanding not only individual touch-points and components, but a the holistic system of a service—connecting a smaller, “designed” touchpoint to a bigger picture or larger cultural phenomenon.

Morville, Peter. Ambient Findability. Sebastopol, Calif: O’Reilly, 2005.

virtual and physical wayfinding

Physical and virtual worlds are both complex environments full of informational and navigational challenges. Morville discusses how people learn to find their way—and various strategies for making sense of information environments

Mulder, Steve, and Ziv Yaar. The User Is Always Right: A Practical Guide to Creating and Using Personas for the Web. New York: New Riders Press, 2006.

persona development


social interaction online

Pollan, Michael. Omnivore’s Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals. New York: Penguin Press, 2006. In a time when most people are disconnected from the sources (or even ingredients) in their food, Pollan writes about food and eating from multiple perspectives along the food chain, discussing food as humans’ interaction with the natural world.

narrowcasting

sustainable agriculture

social interaction online/offline social network theory

Pérez-Peña, Richard. “Newspaper Circulation Continues to Decline Rapidly.” The New York Times. 27 October 2008. 20 April 2009 <http://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/28/business/media/ 28circ.html?partner=rssnyt&emc=rss>. “Producers to Consumers.” Panel discussion with representatives from Carrboro Farmers’ Market, Chatham Marketplace, and SEEDS. Robertson Seminars on Sustainable Food Systems. Five-part seminar series. Duke University, Sanford Institute of Public Policy. 18 February 2009. Putnam, Robert D. Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community. New York: Simon & Schuster, 2000. Putnam’s work references the disintegration of traditional social structures in America (his title is a reference to the disappearance of the bowling league, which had its heyday decades ago). In addition to discussing many potential reasons for Americans’ lack of civic engagement and plummeting social capital, he also offers possible solutions. The chapter “Against the Tide? Small Groups, Social Movements and the Net” is particularly interesting to me.

social interaction online/offline

social interaction online/offline

Raney, Rebecca Fairley. “Study Finds Internet of Social Benefit to Users.” The New York Times. May 11, 2000. <http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=950DE7DC1F38F932A25756C0 A9669C8B63> Accessed: April 2008. Rheingold, Howard. Smart Mobs: the Next Social Revolution. Cambridge, MA: Perseus Pub., 2002. Rheingold, Howard. The Virtual Community: Homesteading on the Electronic Frontier. New York: The MIT Press, 2000. Rheingold, Howard. “Why teach about social media?” Video. Howard Rheingold’s Vlog. 15 July 2008. 8 August 2008. <http://vlog.rheingold.com/index.php/site/video/why-teach-about-social-media/>

persuasion and media design for co-creation

sustainable agriculture identity in collaborative virtual environments

Rose, David S. Information Receptivity Gradient. Personal conversation with Meredith Davis. Fall 2008. Sanders, Elizabeth B-N. Generative Tools for CoDesigning. Working paper. 2000. MakeTools, LLC. 4 Apr. 2009 <http://www.maketools.com/pdfs/GenerativeToolsforCoDesiging_Sanders_00.pdf>. Schlosser, Eric. Fast Food Nation. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 2001. Schroeder, R. and A.S. Axelsson, Eds. Avatars at Work and Play Collaboration and Interaction in Shared Virtual Environments (Computer Supported Cooperative Work). New York: Springer, 2006.

61 bibliography

sustainable agriculture

O’Donnell, Charlie. “Facebook doing a great job making it hard to meet complete strangers off the internet.” Weblog post. This is going to be BIG!. 3 June 2008. 7 July 2008. <http://www.thisisgoingtobebig.com/2008/06/facebook-doing.html>


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Seattle Flickr Meetups. flickr. 31 August 2008. <http://www.flickr.com/groups/seattlemeetups/> Shirky, Clay. Here Comes Everybody: The Power of Organizing Without Organizations. New York: Penguin P HC, The, 2008.

social interaction online/offline crowdsourcing social network theory new consumer model

Clay Shirky explains how the internet facilitates the formation, management and growth of latent groups. Though there are many chapters and ideas in this book that are useful and pertinent to this project, the idea of “latent groups” is particularly significant. Latent groups are collections of people who have some sort of common thread of belief, interest, experience, etc. but exist “only in potentia,” because conventional means were not conducive—or too costly—to bring them together.

Here Comes Everybody is about what happens when people are given the tools to do things together, without needing traditional organizational structures (shirky.com).

Slatalla, Michelle. “omg my mom joined facebook!!” The New York Times. 7 June 2007. 30 May 2008. <http://www.nytimes.com/2007/06/07/fashion/07Cyber.html?_r=1&oref=slogin> Spaargen, Gert. “Sustainable Consumption: A theoretical and environmental policy perspective.” Sustainable consumption the implications of changing infrastructures of provision. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar, 2004. 15-31. Sturken, Marita, and Lisa Cartwright. Practices of Looking: An Introduction to Visual Culture. New York: Oxford UP, USA, 2001. Sustainability Now. Symposium. 24 January 2009. The Long View Center, Raleigh, NC.

social interaction online/offline

social interaction online/offline

sustainable consumption

semiotics

sustainable living and consumption

Six specialists in various fields—all of whom live and work in NC—assembled to discuss their areas of expertise in the realm of sustainability. Topics included non-traditional gardening methods, ways to make one’s home less dependent on fossil fuels, making fuel from waste and production of biodiesel in central NC, nature and spirituality, how to be a more effective environmental advocate, and a discussion on living lightly and simply. These talks helped me see how sub-topics under the umbrella of ‘environmentalism’ or ‘sustainability’ are intertwined. I was not surprised to learn that many of the attendees care very much about the origin and production methods of their foods.

Tunstall, Elizabeth. “Communitas Digitas..” North Carolina State University College of Design, Master of Graphic Design program. Raleigh, N.C. 11 January 2008.

social interaction online/offline

Tynes, Brendesha M.. “Internet Safety Gone Wild? Sacrificing the Educational and Psychosocial Benefits of Online Social Environments.” Journal of Adolescent Research 2007; 22; pp. 575-584. http://jar.sagepub.com/cgi/content/abstract/22/6/575

social interaction online

Wellman, Barry. “Connecting Community: On- and Offline.” Contexts 3, 4. Fall 2004. 19 July 2008. 22-28. <http://www.chass.utoronto.ca/~wellman/publications/> Accessed: July 19, 2008. Wilkie, Meredith. “Online Dating on Campus Offers Convenience Despite Some Stigma.” Yahoo! Personals. Updated 12 August 2008. 31 August 2008. <http://dating.personals.yahoo.com/ singles/gettingstarted/2829/online-dating-on-campus-offers-convenience-despite-some-stigma> Wurman, Richard Saul. Information Anxiety. New York: Doubleday, 1989. Wurman proposes ways to help individuals find information that is relevant to them. His five principles for organizing data: category, alphabet, location, time, and continuum., are of particular interest from the design perspective of my investigation.

social interaction online/offline

social interaction online/offline

information visualization


63 bibliography

SEEDS Durham, N.C., April 2009.


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64

State Farmers Market, Raleigh, N.C., April 2009.


65 appendix

appendix system map research methodology surveys for persona development food systems traditional consumer, producer, distributor model center for environmental farming systems

persona development bill: the novice user derek: the intermediate user michelle: the advanced user

evaluation of existing services levels of zoom early iconographic studies people places connections

early discursive/dialogic studies


Kelly M. Murdoch-Kitt

66

0

Sus tai na ble

50

recent

search

my map

foo ds co m

m

accesses and contributes

Derek invites some friends, including Michelle and Bill, to a local foods picnic. He sends an invitation to Bill, who is not yet a member of the community. From the invitation, Bill can explore Derek’s sustainable foods map. He finds a recipe to accesses and contributes make for the picnic. browser

content information

a rolin

scenario 3

h Ca

mobile device

o rt ,N igh ale

personalized content in reciprocal systems

Derek uses his mobile device to ask a question to the community. Michelle responds, and they meet at Logan’s Trading Company (physical location) so she can help him select plants for his vegetable garden.

R in ty

scenario 1

i un

device adapts to location and information from wall

communication locations related to Raleigh’s sustainable food community

scenario 2

wall recognizes identity tied to device

accesses and contributes

Derek and Michelle run into each other at the State Farmers’ Market. He recommends a farm to her and she looks at their profile and products to learn about their growing practices.

activity is reflected in different formats and contexts

public wall


67 appendix | system map

system map Participants may contribute or view information through personal mobile or browser interfaces as well as public interfaces found at locations participating in the sustainable food community (such as the State Farmers’ Market). Though each interface echoes visual characteristics of the others, they are designed for specific scales and uses. For example, the mobile interface is probably most often used for brief interactions to get specific information while involved in the activities of daily life. Its “map view” is less detailed than that of the browser, where one implicitly has more time to peruse content, or the wall, where the larger scale renders details less overwhelming. The wall and mobile device interact with each other: the device of a registered member will transmit a signal to the wall, not only showing that the person has “checked in” at that location, but also linking any content that the participant contributes to the wall to his/her identity. Members and non-members can both drag specific details from the wall to their devices. which is helpful for gathering recipes, saving images, or creating dynamic shopping lists that respond to their physical position within the market, reminding them to buy certain items. The browser and mobile device both prioritize a tailored view of an individual’s specific preferences, though the entire community map is always searchable and accessible. The wall display, on the other hand, emphasizes information, activities, and connections relative to its specific location, although the wider community’s content could also be accessed through the wall as well. The personas mentioned in this diagram (Derek, Michelle and Bill) are the product of a research process that incorporated quantitative and qualitative surveys and interviews, among other methods. This process is detailed in the following pages.


Kelly M. Murdoch-Kitt

68

Dwarf peach blossoms J.C. Raulston Arboretum, Raleigh, N.C., March 2009.


69 appendix | research methodology

research methodology Though reading constituted a major part of my research, I supplemented my qualitative reading experience with information interviews, particularly with various experts in the area of sustainable eating. I investigated many local resources to get an idea of what is available in terms of organizations, businesses, services, and other information relevant to the local food community. I augmented this research with a more quantitative survey of a variety of participants in the sustainable food community. I developed questions to ascertain their goals, needs, and sense of the community (or whether they think there is one at all). I used Dori Tunstallâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Five Experiential Elements of Community (relationships, agency, historical consciousness, life goals, organizational structure) and my own sub-categories for visual studies (identity, community as a social learning tool, information visualization, connections between virtual and physical) as a framework for these questions to address respondentsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;: motivation(s) for engaging in this lifestyle/how they learned about it in the first place, food lifestyle as a social or solitary activity, types of resources they use that contribute to their participation (physical/virtual; learning), importance of this lifestyle to their sense of personal or group identity, mental image or sense of the community (visualizations, virtual/physical), desire to be socially and/or politically involved in this issue (community), etc. The responses to these questions taught me more about the groupâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s behaviors, attitudes, goals, and needs. These findings helped shape my design direction.


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70

survey I

54

The survey process, beginning with a general, quantitative survey and ending with specific questions directed at a small group of respondents, laid the foundation for persona development.

survey II

15 chosen for 2nd survey

12

survey III

11 asked to complete a 3rd survey

9

3 personas


71 appendix | surveys for persona development

Survey I: ranking food priorities (54 respondents)

Cumulative results from the first survey, which was created and circulated via the free survey site SurveyMonkey.com.


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72

I try to eat organic as much as possible since I work with migrant farmworkers and know the high levels of exposure [to pesticides] that they encounter. I try to eat local foods as much as possible too and enjoy feeling connected to where my food comes from and supporting a business that I know. I am a definite foodie. (in response to Survey II, question 1)

Survey II: questions about personal food choices (12 respondents) 1. How would you describe your personal food lifestyle? (You can use a word, phrase, sentence or paragraph; feel free to make something up if you donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t know of an appropriate description that already exists.) 2. Are you happy with your current food lifestyle, or is there a different way you would ideally want to eat? 3. What are your motivations for engaging in your food lifestyle? 4. Do you know other people who have eating habits or food philosophy similar to yours? Would it be helpful for you to know other people who share your food lifestyle or desired food lifestyle? 5. Have you had any particular experiences that guided you toward a specific dietary lifestyle decision? (e.g. maybe you read an article or had a conversation, or once you had a farmersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; market tomato, you could never go back to the ones from the grocery store...) 6. What percentage of your current eating habits are learned/inherited from family learned/decided on your own influenced by friends/peers/others

It would be helpful to have local advice and community. (in response to Survey II, question 4)

influenced by literature/media other 7. On an average (7-day) week, how many meals do you cook at home (instead of eating at a restaurant or eating prepared foods)? 8. When you cook, how do you find recipes and information about food? (cookbooks, friends, family, websites, etc.) Of these resources, which do you find most useful, and why? 9. Do you want to know other information about your food? If so, what would you want to know?


73

intermediate: I work to educate myself and put some of these ideas into practice

I really don’t know very much about sustainable agriculture or what it entails. I do know I like to buy food locally to support fellow North Carolinians and to have fresher food. I’m not very good about this during the winter—I buy out of season and from far away. During the summer I go to the NC farmers’ market pretty regularly.

advanced: I set specific goals for my eating lifestyle, make decisions based on these goals

(in response to Survey III, question 1)

1. 1. What do you know about sustainable agriculture or the local food community in your area? Do you think such a community exists? 2. What is your personal definition of “local” food? Do you consider North Carolina to be agriculturally diverse enough to support a “local food” lifestyle? 3. How accessible are locally/sustainably produced foods in this area? 4. What are some of the benefits and/or difficulties involved in supporting local/sustainable agriculture? 5. How would you classify yourself as a participant/consumer of sustainable agriculture and/or local foods? not interested: this topic does not apply to my lifestyle interested novice: I am new to this concept and trying to learn more

expert: I have in-depth knowledge about my local foodshed and center my food choices around sustainable agriculture 6. What resources (people, places, businesses, organizations, information sources, etc) would you find most useful in specifically supporting a local/sustainable food lifestyle? Who would you consider ‘experts’ in this topic? 7. Do you act as an advocate for this lifestyle? How? Why? If not, what would convince you to or make it easier for you to become an advocate? 8. What issues facing the local food economy concern you most? (Genetically modified crops, “pharming,” drought/irrigation issues, pesticides/runoff, industrial methods/corporatization, loss of family farmland, living wages for famers/farm workers, teaching industrial farming methods at land-grant universities, etc) Would you consider contacting one of your state representatives or other elected officials about issues facing the local economy? 9. If you could talk to one person about sustainable agriculture, who would it be and why? 10. If your eating habits are related to a concern for the environment, what other choices or changes have you made to lessen your environmental impact?

I do talk about the benefits of eating non-processed foods to my friends and family. I promote the farmers’ market and try to bring friends there to shop. (in response to Survey III, question 7)

appendix | surveys for persona development

Survey III: questions about sustainable food/agriculture (9 respondents)


74

Though I made certain predictions based on my personal experiences with the local sustainable

Kelly M. Murdoch-Kitt

food community, the respondents’ perspectives challenged some of my preconceived notions. These unexpected and sometimes elaborate results gave me a more comprehensive image of the community and ides of how I might design for some of their specific responses. The purpose of conducting these interviews/surveys was not to determine what I would design or how I would design it, but to figure out the community’s goals and needs and how they think. Following the series of surveys, I created several matrices of the responses, and sorted them into categories of novice, intermediate, and expert. Based on these categories, I developed lists of each group’s specific goals, attitudes, and behaviors. The products of these responses include three personas: Michelle is advanced, Derek is intermediate, and Bill is a novice regarding sustainable foods. For each persona, I created corresponding “service ecology” maps (Moggridge). The maps were useful to explore possible design opportunities extending from the personal level out through the levels of the physical community (city, state, region, etc). The surveys also revealed different perspectives on the structure (or ideal structure) of the food system. I created quick visualizations of these with different sized paper cylinders to roughly represent the quantity of people within each category. Regardless of the configuration, consumers are obviously the largest group.

Alternative models for consumers, distributors and producers prioritizing closer connections between all parties, as well as consumers who are also producers.

Perception of the current, prevailing food system: producers are distant from consumers, who unquestionably rely on distributors to provide them with foods.


75

dis n tr o i t ib c gration e u t n i

ion

pr o

(Center for Environmental Farming Systems, N.C. State University)

ut

d

natural resources/ environmental systems

social & cultural systems

people pt io

yc re c

n

economic systems

li a w a r e n e s s ng um s con

political systems Model for Sustainable Agriculture, redrawn from Center for Environmental Farming Systems, (ncsustainablefood.wordpress.com)

appendix | food systems

A food system describes the cycle of growing, distributing, eating and recycling our food, and all the factors that affect it.


Kelly M. Murdoch-Kitt

76

novice

intermediate

advanced

goals:

goals:

goals:

physical health

physical health

physical health

increase the proportion of food I eat that comes from local producers /

support local growers

maintain mental health/ good conscience

be more creative with food/cooking

promote environmental health

stay away from pesticide laden foods

support farms that practice more humane treatment of animals

cook more often eliminate most processed foods from my diet learn how/where to buy better foods economically learn how to store foods more effectively and when they are likely to expire

have a garden and grow my own veggies have my own chicken coop learn when/where a food item was harvested

encourage healthy local food consumption explore new recipes

eat more fruit and grains

learn how to freeze, can, preserve

avoid products produced by growers who treat their workers unjustly

find others who share my food lifestyle or desired food lifestyle to learn from them

find teachers (e.g. good bread bakers)

learn about fair trade/worker treatment in regards to specific foods

learn more about sustainable farming in my area and what that means find/ read some more books to broaden my perspective chat with producers/sellers, learn more about their process and products

attitudes:

newly aware of some of the benefits of local food and sustainable agriculture understands connection between food and physical health; think these foods taste better and are better for them nutritionally some awareness of production methods, but concern is primarily focused around personal health (i.e. “how do these pesticides affect ME,” not yet considering the bigger picture) curious, but slightly intimidated; not sure how to “do this”

behaviors:

learn about nutritional information medicinal properties, probiotics chat with producers/sellers, learn more about their process and products

aware of many of the individual and community benefits of local food and sustainable agriculture understands connection between food and physical health; has some knowledge of healing foods/foods as natural remedies

learn what else I can do to support local farms know people who share my desired food lifestyle -- who have already integrated the things I would like to integrate meet restaurant owners and growers who share my desired food lifestyle

interested in production methods, not only for personal health but for the long-range viability of the local foodshed (i.e. enriching the land, not robbing it)

attitudes:

concerned about the effects of industrial farming on the ecosystem concerned about the loss of family farms to developers and disinterested generations

consumes some local/sustainable foods in addition to nonseasonal and/or non-local food choices

feels like she could be doing more / doing better

recycles, doesn’t buy bottled water, cancels junk mail and catalogs

learn what’s being done in the local economy to support local farms

understands connection between local food and community health

ethical shopper

seeks recommendations for specific stores and products

find out total environmental impact score of foods/ producers find volunteer opportunities

attitudes:

purchases based on cost and convenience

shops primarily at regional or national chain grocery stores, sometimes farmers’ market—if it’s convenient

grow more of my own food

behaviors:

purchases based on keeping dollars in the local economy, environmental sensitivity of packaging (or lack of packaging), and production methods consumes a large percentage of local/sustainable foods subscribes to a CSA, supplements with trips to local farmers’ markets and co-ops and sometimes regional or national chain grocery stores brings own bags when shopping, prioritizes local goods/ stores for non-food items

aware of the big-picture, environmental and social benefits of local food and sustainable agriculture believes in cultivating or re-establishing local food traditions, embraces the variety of local foods realizes and rejects the homogeny of grocery store chains reevaluates personal habits and strives to improve footprint wants to be more politically involved in this issue; seeks in-depth information from experts confident in personal food choices but doesn’t necessarily feel like she has enough information to be a public advocate

behaviors:

purchases based on relationships with growers and knowledge of their production methods consumes a large percentage of local/sustainable foods grows some food subscribes to a CSA, supplements with trips to local farmers’ markets and co-ops; rarely visits traditional grocery stores walks or bikes whenever possible


novice

intermediate

advanced

77 appendix | persona development

Bill

Derek

Michelle

The following persona profiles and maps were developed at the beginning of the design phase.


78

Occupation: Ph.D. Student Location: Avent Ferry Rd, Raleigh, NC Age: 29 interested novice seeks basic, practical information slightly intimidated, but also curious cooks 3-4 meals/week at home uses a computer for part of the day at school and recreationally at home

Bill

“I want to eat more local food as long as it’s cheap, convenient, and good for me, too.”

personal profile

goals at the site:

perspective:

daily behaviors:

Bill is a full-time PhD student in evolutionary biology at NC State University. He read The Omnivore’s Dilemma a few years ago at the recommendation of one of his professors, and it made him think about his personal consumption habits.

learn convenient ways to increase the amount of his food that comes from local producers

newly aware of some of the benefits of local food and sustainable agriculture

purchases based on cost and convenience

understands connection between food and physical health; think these foods taste better and are better for them nutritionally

consumes some local/sustainable foods in addition to non-seasonal and/or non-local food choices

some awareness of production methods, but concern is primarily focused around personal health (i.e. “how do these pesticides affect ME,” not yet considering the bigger picture)

shops primarily at regional or national chain groceries

curious, but slightly intimidated; not sure how to “do this”

recycles, doesn’t buy bottled water, cancels junk mail and catalogs

One of Bill’s personal goals is to eliminate most processed foods from his diet, but he finds that particularly challenging as a graduate student with a tight budget and even tighter schedule. Related to that goal, he’d like to cook at home more often, too, but feels like he lacks inspiration and motivation—not to mention time. He’s interested in supporting local farmers and knows that NC produces a lot of food, but he’s not sure where to go to get it. He moved to Raleigh from Ohio two years ago but feels like school has prevented him from fully acquainting himself with his surroundings. He’s worried that buying local ingredients will be more expensive and time-consuming than just swinging by Harris Teeter to pick up something quick. But he also knows that he feels better when he makes an effort to eat well, which is why he is seeking more information.

find tips about how to cook more efficiently so he can eat more homemade meals learn how to eliminate most processed foods from his diet learn how/where to buy better foods economically learn how to store foods more effectively and when they are likely to expire meet others who share his desired food lifestyle to learn from them learn more about sustainable farming in the area and what that means find some more books and other resources to broaden perspective chat with producers/sellers, learn more about their process and products

concerned about his budget and about having enough energy by the end of the week to play soccer against the guys from the other lab.

seeks recommendations for specific stores and products


7 days ago

850 days ago

7 days ago

79

7 days ago

10 days ago

30 days ago

regional - food

7 days ago food harvested 12 days ago

field workers customs

farmers

FDA

state - food

fishermen USDA

W

distributors

transporters field workers

HO

frequency of shopping

county - food

vintners

W

HY

2 days ago

transporters farmers

city - food

transporters

3 times/month

farmers

community home - food reasons 3-4 times/week personal cooking social activity reasons at home inherited ritual

Bill

industrial groves

containment feedlot factory

food transport truck

truck

truck

train

regional grocery (Harris Teeter) national grocery (Whole Foods) campus food court or cafeterias convenience foods

HE

W

HO W

winery

NC family farm industrial farm

consumption

distribution

production

factory workers

personal drives car drives car actions personal transport

meals his apartment

factory

truck

cooks eats

factory

factory workers

farmers

producers, distributors, regulators

person - food

save money specific cravings personal health nutritional benefits satisfy hunger

convenience

field workers

field workers

neighborhood - food

open sea

appendix | bill: profile and service ecology map (novice)

12 days ago 10 days ago

WHEN national - food

60 days ago

RE

seasonal produce

types of foods soup

breads

meat tropical produce

dairy

cookies

non-seasonal produce cereals

WHAT

fish

wine pasta

train

boat boat air

air


80

7 days ago

850 days ago

national - food

Kelly M. Murdoch-Kitt

60 days ago 7 days ago 12 days ago 10 days ago

WHEN

7 days ago

10 days ago

30 days ago

regional - food

7 days ago food harvested 12 days ago

state - food

W HY

2 days ago

frequency of shoppin

county - food

city - food 3 times/month

neighborhood - food

community home - food reasons 3-4 times/week personal cooking social activity reasons at home inherited ritual

convenience

person - food

save money specific cravings personal health nutritional benefits satisfy hunger

cooks eats

factory

industrial groves

Bill

meals his apartment

personal

drive


entry: virtual nodes existing services

identifying benefits

meetup.com event on site

Facebook app/add-on

enter a recipe URL to find local ingredients

field workersFlickr customs contact with other people

local food photo pools/groups farmers

9

10finish session / leave system

use system temporarity

compare an ingredient cost/ availability across multiple sources

create an account

see who else has saved same link/ resource

open ID, Facebook, Gmail, Twitter, etc

5

FDA

read related articles saved by other members

2

specific sites

8

see products saved by other members mark locations I’ve visited (in person)

W

local food blogs

HO

field workerslook at a participant’s map NC Dept of

transporters Agriculture’s

3

mark locations I’d like to visit

online “general farmerslook at an upcoming event store” and maps

transporters

field workers

field workers related keyword searches

farmers

NC state fair site

farmers

explore maps

NCSU student health center site

details for my area

recipe search/ recipe site

online CSA subscription

truck

7

save recipes and ingredients/ shopping lists

find recipes recipe search/ send/share

restaurant sites (e.g. zely & ritz) grocery store, market or co-op site

truck

food transport truck train

drives car

add a new place— not yet mapped (categorize and describe)

factory workersenter zip to see

Slow Food Triangle

“pick-your-own” directories online

look at an associated link factory workers

CEFS: site, resources, conferences

online searches (“sustainability,” “food,” “Raleigh,” etc.)

producers, distributors, regulators

4

my map/ others’ maps

add locations to my map from other peoples’ maps

or

6

look at list of youtube, vimeo, available produce, fishermen cost, distance invitation emailed netflix: streaming videos, ads or links from the map USDA based on location vintners read farm/ grower/producer link(s) emailed distributors profiles, photos, from the map transporters & practices

1

DECIDING TO PARTICIPATE

after joining / return visit

truck train

seek & find

exchange/ contribute

people I know/trust

find: stores farms markets co-ops restaurants CSA drop-off locations recipes

meet people who want to share gardening tools & supplies, CSA subscription, etc.

word of mouth: family friends neighbors co-workers doctor nutritionist teachers

find cooking/food preparation advice see/find what’s in season make a local/ seasonal shopping list find info on specific foods - where produced - when harvested -use of resources - cost - storage find: neighbors local gardens/ gardeners, chicken coops, people like me, more advanced participants, advocates

air

trade or share excess food or garden produce contribute: questions comments concerns descriptions criticism ideas advice read or contribute farm/grower/ producer profiles, photos, & practices

communicate & meet

send a message: through system/ via text chat with someone participate in discussions; conversations; debates

seek/find gardening advice

create an event or errand

find: facts/info to help prep advocates

RSVP to an open event

find/post: volunteer involvement/ opportunities

boat

[entry] physical nodes

find/post: advocacy opportunities/ ideas

receive introductions browse upcoming events

community events

conference seminar symposium lecture annual farm tour meetup.com events annual chicken tour: Henside the Beltline Tour de Coop other community events: groundbreaking of Durham Community Garden NC state fair

11

specific locations

Farmers’ markets: 5 city locations + Moore Sq.

Grocery stores: - Harris Teeter -Whole Foods - Fresh Market - Harmony Farms - Trader Joe’s WF and HT have special signage for “local” foods stickers/labels on produce and other food products co-ops: Durham Chapel Hill Carrborro gardening supply stores (e.g. Logan’s) land under debate CSA farms restaurants: menu, bar, (e.g. zely & ritz) catering services other places that make local products (bread, cheese) student health center flier at campus cafeteria for meals featuring local foods leave location

81 appendix | bill: service ecology detail and activity map

event site

Twitter

y ng

es car

first visit


82

Occupation: Game Designer Location: Just west of Downtown Raleigh Age: 30 Lives with his girlfriend intermediate: works to educate himself, and put some of these ideas into practice seeks mentorship and community in producing more of own foods excited about food but feels there is still much to learn/do cooks 12-15 meals/week at home can’t be separated from his gadgets, especially his mobile phone

Derek

“Local products taste better and help me nourish my community.”

personal profile

goals at the site:

perspective:

daily behaviors:

Derek designs educational games and software for high school students. His work keeps him busy, but his schedule is usually regular enough to cook at home pretty often.

find specific local ingredients for his recipes

aware of many of the individual and community benefits of local food and sustainable agriculture

He read The Jungle by Upton Sinclair when he was in 10th grade, and it influenced his decision to become vegetarian. His parents and neighbors also shaped his eating habits: they all had vegetable gardens, and his folks often took him and his siblings to farmers’ markets.

identify pesticide-free foods and where they are sold

understands connection between food and physical health; has some knowledge of healing foods/foods as natural remedies

makes purchases based on keeping dollars in the local economy, environmental sensitivity of packaging (or lack of packaging), and production methods

find community support/advice for growing own veggies

understands connection between local food and community health

borrow tools from a neighbor to get started with her garden

interested in production methods, not only for personal health but for the longrange viability of the local foodshed (i.e. enriching the land, not robbing it)

Some of Derek’s personal goals include producing more of his own food through growing vegetables and possibly raising chickens for eggs. He knows there are some city chickens in the area, but he’d like to meet some of their owners to get some advice. Derek recently subscribed to a CSA from a farm in Pittsboro, NC. For the food he buys locally (mostly from markets, Whole Foods, and occasional trips to co-ops in Durham and Chapel Hill), Derek wants to know when the food was harvested, how it was produced, and creative ways he and his girlfriend can prepare it. He is willing to travel further to buy food that is grown in the state.

learn to be more creative with food/cooking

find more information about raising chickens in the city limits learn when/where a food item was harvested learn how to freeze, can, and preserve find teachers (e.g. good bread bakers) learn about nutritional information, medicinal properties, probiotics chat with producers/sellers, learn more about their process and products

concerned about the effects of industrial farming on the ecosystem concerned about the loss of family farms to developers and disinterested generations ethical shopper feels like he could be doing more /doing better

consumes a large percentage of local/ sustainable foods subscribes to a CSA, supplements with trips to local farmers’ markets and co-ops and sometimes regional or national chain grocery stores brings own bags when shopping, prioritizes local goods/stores for non-food items, like soap


WHEN

83

national - food

regional - food

7 days ago 12 days ago

state - food 2-3 days ago

frequency of shopping

W

county - food yesterday or today

farmers

more efficient use of land

fresher produce convenience

distributors

home - food

inherited ritual

save money

distributors neighbors gardeners

person - food

personal health nutritional benefits satisfy hunger

Derek

production

regional farms

NC family farm

bakery farmers’ market CSA drop-off point

rides bike walks

her house

distribution

potlucks

seasonal produce

personal actions

restaurants national grocery (Whole Foods)

truck

food transport truck

truck

train

eats meals

neighborhood fruit trees (persimmon, mulberry)

factory workers

processing plant (dairy)

producers, distributors, regulators truck

cooks

her neighbors’ her garden gardens

factory

distributors

distributors

field workers

bakers

12-15 times/week personal cooking reasons at home

pleasure of cultivating earth

NC dairy

field workers transporters

seasonally

immediately, when ripe

share/trade with neighbors

transporters

1-2 times/week

neighborhood - food

social activity

USDA

farmers today

support local economy

encourages independent businesses

field workers

city - food

community reasons

ethical & environmental concerns

production

FDA

NC Dept of Agriculture

objects to conventional industrial farming methods

“big picture”

farmers

1 time/week

HO W

HY

1 time/week

picnics

rides bike drives car

drives car

personal transport

seasonal produce

restaurants

seasonal produce

W

HO W

consumption

breads

E

R HE

seasonal produce

types dairy of foods cereals pasta

WHAT

soup

appendix | derek: profile and service ecology map (intermediate)

food harvested


WHEN

84 Kelly M. Murdoch-Kitt

national - food

food harvested

regional - food

7 days ago 12 days ago

state - food 2-3 days ago

HY

1 time/week

W

county - food yesterday or today objects to conventional industrial farming methods

â&#x20AC;&#x153;big

pictureâ&#x20AC;? ethical & environmental concerns

today

neighborhood - food more efficient use of land

immediately, when ripe

share/trade with neighbors

convenience

seasonally

dist

home - food

12-15 times/week personal cooking reasons at home inherited ritual

fresher produce

save money

pleasure of cultivating earth

regional farms

1-2 times/week

support local economy

social activity

factory

1 time/week

city - food

community reasons encourages independent businesses

frequency shopping

neighbors

garden

person - food

personal health nutritional benefits satisfy hunger

production

Derek cooks

her neighborsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; her garden gardens

eats meals


entry: virtual nodes existing services

identifying benefits

DECIDING TO PARTICIPATE

meetup.com event on site

Facebook app/add-on

enter a recipe URL to find local ingredients

use system temporarity

compare an ingredient cost/ availability across multiple sources

create an account

Flickr local food photo pools/groups

contact with other people

invitation emailed from the map

youtube, vimeo, netflix: streaming videos, ads or links based on location

link(s) emailed from the map specific sites

NC Dept of Agriculture’s online “general store” and maps

NC Dept of Agriculture

field workers

NC state fair site

farmers

farmers

tributors bakers

ners

transporters

related keyword field workers searches

CEFS: site, resources, conferences

read farm/ grower/producer profiles, photos, & practices look at a participant’s map

FDA

HO

farmers

open ID, Facebook, Gmail, Twitter, etc

W

local food blogs

look at list of available produce, cost, distance

or

producers, distributors, regulators truck

truck

truck

add locations to my map from other peoples’ maps see who else has saved same link/ resource read related articles saved by other members

add a new place— not yet mapped (categorize and describe)

explore maps

food transport truck

train

exchange/ contribute

people I know/trust

specific locations

find: stores farms markets co-ops restaurants CSA drop-off locations recipes

meet people who want to share gardening tools & supplies, CSA subscription, etc.

word of mouth: family friends neighbors co-workers doctor nutritionist teachers

Farmers’ markets: 5 city locations + Moore Sq.

trade or share excess food or garden produce

3

see/find what’s in season make a local/ seasonal shopping list

mark locations I’ve visited (in person)

find info on specific foods - where produced - when harvested -use of resources - cost - storage find: neighbors local gardens/ gardeners, chicken coops, people like me, more advanced participants, advocates

save recipes and ingredients/ shopping lists

[entry] physical nodes

seek & find

find cooking/food preparation advice

see products saved by other members

look at an USDA associated link

restaurant sites (e.g. zely & ritz) grocery store, market or co-op site

my map/ others’ maps

mark locations I’d like to visit

(dairy)subscription

“pick-your-own” directories online

finish session / leave system

look at an upcoming event

enter zip to see distributors details for my area transportersNCSU student online searches health center site (“sustainability,” “food,” “Raleigh,” recipes factory find workers distributors field workers etc.) Slow Food Triangle recipe search/ processing plant send/share recipe search/ online CSA recipe site distributors

after joining / return visit

contribute: questions comments concerns descriptions criticism ideas advice

read or contribute farm/grower/ producer profiles, photos, & practices

4

communicate & meet

send a message: through system/ via text

5

chat with someone participate in discussions; conversations; debates

2

seek/find gardening advice

create an event or errand

find: facts/info to help prep advocates

RSVP to an open event

find/post: volunteer involvement/ opportunities find/post: advocacy opportunities/ ideas

6

receive introductions

browse upcoming events

community events

conference seminar symposium lecture annual farm tour

Grocery stores: - Harris Teeter -Whole Foods - Fresh Market - Harmony Farms - Trader Joe’s WF and HT have special signage for “local” foods stickers/labels on produce and other food products

meetup.com events annual chicken tour: Henside the Beltline Tour de Coop other community events: groundbreaking of Durham Community Garden NC state fair

co-ops: Durham Chapel Hill Carrborro

1

gardening supply stores (e.g. Logan’s)

land under debate CSA farms restaurants: menu, bar, (e.g. zely & ritz) catering services other places that make local products (bread, cheese) student health center flier at campus cafeteria for meals featuring local foods leave location

85 appendix | derek: service ecology detail and activity map

event site

Twitter

y of

first visit


86

Occupation: Mom, part-time employee at Ten Thousand Villages, Food Bank volunteer Location: Park Dr, Raleigh, NC Age: 36 Family of 4, 2 kids

Michelle

advanced: sets specific goals for her family’s eating lifestyle seeks community and information eager to learn more about her new foodshed, wants to become a better advocate cooks 18+ meals/week at home uses computers to keep in touch with friends and family, search for recipes, etc

“Eating with a conscience is good for my kids, the local economy, and the environment, too.”

personal profile

goals at the site:

perspective:

daily behaviors:

Her husband is vegetarian; she and the kids are omnivorous. Healthy foods are important to everyone, and there is a heavy emphasis on vegetables and grains.

support farms that practice more humane treatment of animals

aware of the big-picture, environmental and social benefits of local food and sustainable agriculture

purchases based on relationships with growers and knowledge of their production methods

While living in California, Michelle and her family didn’t have much room for a garden, but they subscribed to a CSA and went to local farmers’ markets at least once a week. Now, in NC, she is frustrated that local, organic produce is more difficult to find, but they have a yard and will plant a garden this spring, supplementing with veggies from a CSA and meats from local markets and co-ops.

exchange ideas and recipes

believes in cultivating or re-establishing local food traditions, embraces the variety of local foods

consumes a large percentage of local/sustainable foods

find products produced by growers who treat their workers fairly

realizes and rejects the homogeny of grocery store chains

encouraging and advocating urban food production

reevaluates personal habits and strives to decrease her family’s footprint

find out environmental impact scores of foods/producers

wants to be more politically involved in this issue; seeks in-depth information from experts

Michelle wants to learn more about the area so she and her family can do more to support local producers. She wants her kids to know where their food comes from and to meet farmers in the area. She is conscientious of worker health and wages, and wants to make sure the food she is buying supports businesses that treat workers (and the environment) well. She’d like to be able to quickly see different ratings for producers, distributors, and their environmental impact. She wants to feel confident when she contacts her state representatives about supporting NC’s local food economies.

encourage healthy local food consumption

find volunteer opportunities learn what else she can do to politically support local/sustainable farms meet restaurant owners, growers, and neighbors who share her ideology

confident in personal food choices but doesn’t necessarily feel like she has enough information about the area to be an outspoken public advocate (yet). concerned about local universities supporting GMOs and industrial farming practices

grows some food subscribes to a CSA, supplements with trips to local farmers’ markets and co-ops; rarely visits traditional grocery stores walks or bikes whenever possible, reuses jars and containers, purchases unpackaged foods or foods with biodegradable or recyclable packaging, drinks water/reusable water bottle, boycotts certain foods (like bananas)


WHEN

87

national - food

regional - food

7 days ago 12 days ago

state - food 2-3 days ago

W

yesterday or today

objects to conventional industrial farming methods

farmers who will discuss production methods FDA NC Dept of Agriculture

city - food

community reasons

today

farmers who will discuss production methods

share/trade with neighbors concern for the environment

ethical & environmental concerns

personal cooking reasons at home inherited ritual

fresher produce convenience

save money

person - food

personal health nutritional benefits satisfy hunger

pleasure of cultivating earth

neighbors

family

NC dairy

NC family farm

bakery

(Fresh Market)

farmers’ market CSA drop-off point

national grocery (Whole Foods)

truck

truck

food transport truck

train

preserves

her house

freezes breads

distribution state/local grocery

Congressional

eats meals

neighborhood fruit trees (persimmon, mulberry)

processing plant (dairy, meat)

producers, representatives distributors, regulators truck

cooks

her neighbors’ her garden gardens

regional farms

gardeners

Michelle

production

factory

distributors

gardeners

factory workers

distributors

field workers

bakers

18 + times/week

social activity

“big picture”

distributors

daily

home - food

meals with friends

distributors

transporters

seasonally

immediate.ly, when ripe

USDA transporters

field workers

neighborhood - food more efficient use of land

field workers

farmers who will discuss production methods

1-2 times/week

support local economy

encourages independent businesses

concern for farm workers

production

frequency of shop1 time/week ping

county - food

disagrees with and distrusts centralized food system

concern for treatment of animals

1 time/week

HO W

HY

wants to support a more sustainable system that can be replicated in other communities

potlucks

seasonal produce

rides bike walks

personal actions

restaurants

rides bike drives car

drives car

personal transport

drives car

eggs picnics

seasonal produce

restaurants

seasonal produce

W

dairy

E

R HE

seasonal produce

types meats of foods cereals pasta

WHAT

HO W

consumption

appendix | michelle: profile and service ecology map (advanced)

food harvested


WHEN

88 Kelly M. Murdoch-Kitt

national - food

food harvested

regional - food

7 days ago 12 days ago

state - food

HY

wants to support a more sustainable system that can be replicated in other communities

2-3 days ago

W concern for treatment of animals

yesterday or today

today

neighborhood - food more efficient use of land

immediate.ly, when ripe

share/trade with neighbors

â&#x20AC;&#x153;big

pictureâ&#x20AC;? ethical & environmental concerns factory regional farms

1-2 times/week

support local economy

concern for farm workers

concern for the environment

1 time/week

city - food

community reasons encourages independent businesses

frequenc of shoppi

county - food

disagrees with and distrusts centralized food system objects to conventional industrial farming methods

1 time/week

home - food

18 + times/week

social activity

inherited ritual

fresher produce

save money

pleasure of cultivating earth

production

dis

daily

personal cooking reasons at home

meals with friends

convenience

seasonally

her neighborsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; her garden gardens

person - food

personal health nutritional benefits satisfy hunger

neighbors

family

Michelle cooks eats preserves

garde


entry: virtual nodes existing services

identifying benefits

DECIDING TO PARTICIPATE

meetup.com event on site

Facebook app/add-on

enter a recipe URL to find local ingredients

use system or temporarity

Flickr local food photo pools/groups

contact with other people

youtube, vimeo, invitation emailed netflix: streaming videos, ads or links from the map based on location link(s) emailed from the map

NC Dept of Agriculture

eners

read farm/ grower/producer profiles, photos, & practices look at a participant’s map

transporters CEFS: site, resources, conferences

explore maps

restaurant sites “pick-your-own” (e.g. zely & ritz) directories online Congressional

read related articles saved by other members

producers, 6 distributors, regulators

grocery store, market or co-op site

truck

food transport truck

train

exchange/ contribute

find: stores farms markets co-ops restaurants CSA drop-off locations recipes

meet people who want to share gardening tools & supplies, CSA subscription, etc. trade or share excess food or garden produce contribute: questions comments concerns descriptions criticism ideas advice

see/find what’s in season

see products saved by other members

8

seek & find

find cooking/food preparation advice

make a local/ seasonal shopping list

mark locations I’ve visited (in person)

find info on specific foods - where produced - when harvested -use of resources - cost - storage find: neighbors local gardens/ gardeners, chicken coops, people like me, more advanced participants, advocates

save recipes, ingredients/ shopping lists

10 browse links

on another participant’s profile

read or contribute farm/grower/ producer profiles, photos, & practices

communicate & meet

send a message: through system/ via text chat with someone participate in discussions; conversations; debates

seek/find gardening advice

create an event or errand

find: facts/info to help prep advocates

RSVP to an open event

11

representatives

truck

12

add a new place— not yet mapped (categorize and describe)

distributors

truck

see who else has saved same link/ resource

look at an USDA associated link

recipe site(dairy, meat) subscription

later that night, at home

9

NC state fair site

enter zip to see distributors details for my area NCSU student online searches transporters health center site (“sustainability,” “food,” “Raleigh,” recipes factory find workers field workers etc.) distributors Slow Food Triangle recipe search/ send/share processing plant recipe search/ online CSA

gardeners

add locations to my map from other peoples’ maps

mark locations I’d like to visit

farmers who will production methods

bakers

open ID, Facebook, Gmail, Twitter, etc

my map/ others’ maps

FDA look at an upcoming event

related keyword discuss field workers searches

stributors

create an account

finish session / leave system

Agriculture’s online “general store” and maps

field workers

farmers who will discuss production methods

look at list of available produce, cost, distance

or

HO

farmers who will discuss NC Dept of production methods

7

W

specific sites

local food blogs

compare an ingredient cost/ availability across multiple sources

after joining / return visit

find/post: volunteer involvement/ opportunities find/post: advocacy opportunities/ ideas

[entry] physical nodes people In the community

word of mouth: family friends neighbors co-workers doctor nutritionist teachers 3 fellow consumers community events

conference seminar symposium lecture annual farm tour meetup.com events

specific locations

Farmers’ markets: 5 city locations + Moore Sq. Grocery stores: - Harris Teeter -Whole Foods - Fresh Market - Harmony Farms - Trader Joe’s WF and HT have special signage for “local” foods stickers/labels on produce and other food products

1

annual chicken tour: Henside the Beltline Tour de Coop other community events: groundbreaking of Durham Community Garden

gardening supply stores (e.g. Logan’s) land under debate CSA farms restaurants: menu, bar, (e.g. zely & ritz)

NC state fair

catering services other places that make local products (bread, cheese) student health center

receive introductions

2

browse upcoming events

4

send info to self via email or text (recipes, events)

co-ops: Durham Chapel Hill Carrborro

flier at campus cafeteria for meals featuring local foods

5 leave location

89 appendix | michelle: service ecology detail and activity map

event site

Twitter

cy ing

first visit


Kelly M. Murdoch-Kitt

90

Evaluation of existing applications and services that were inspirational in the development of this project, measured against my four categories for visual studies

individual identity

Twitter

StumbleUpon & Glue

Wikipedia

Facebook

Platial

Brightkite

Meetup

Friendfeed

single realistic or abstract image

single realistic photo

aggregated images (abstract)

single realistic photo

single realistic or abstract image

single realistic photo

single realistic photo

single image

“check-ins” (places)

participation in groups (level of participation)

networks/ memberships

content of tweets who one follows

“collections” reviews

no realistic photo of individual

photos uploaded by friends posted items

places mapped reviews/comments

comments

content (text)

profile contents group memberships

community identity

community learning/ exchange

asynchronous

asynchronous

synchronous

information visualization

physical component: interaction with physical environment and/or face-to-face interaction

3rd party applications

Wikipedia

groups: images uploaded by members, sometimes a group statement or event

maps marked by individuals within fixed, pre-determined, noneditable cate

individual members’ profile images and check-ins

log of events participants

asynchronous

asynchronous

asynchronous

asynchronous

asynchronous

synchronous

‘visual array’ of collections (aggregate images)

text feed

in-person

map of locations only

map of locations only

text feed

daily patterns of individuals

reflection of existing, ‘real life’ social network planning/facilitation of events in the physical environment as well as ‘virtual’ events

asynchronous

marking and commentary on places one has visited in the physical environment

marking and commentary on places one has visited in the physical environment

primary purpose is in-person, face-to-face interaction in the physical environment


91

content:

people

products

level of zoom/detail:

on login: pattern or symbol on search: add descriptive text

5

(zoom out) temporal information

4

general ideas and information - public information - curated by community (not necessarily created by the community) - not always associated with specific location

3

location: neighborhood - overview of a smaller area - closer look at people, places and activities

2

location interior contents - community-created or curated

1 (zoom in) single unit most detailed information

places

sweet potatoes

information/data

ideas/opinion

events

appendix | evaluation of existing services | levels of zoom

Early exploration of levels of zoom into an object or location revealing different types of information/ content


producers

distributors

organizations

consumers

level of expertise

Kelly M. Murdoch-Kitt

92

participation/contributions


93 appendix | early iconographic studies: people

novice

intermed.

advanced

expert

bean

sprout

seedling

plant

flavorless

palatable

tempting

delectable

unseasoned

appetizing

flavorful

scrumptious

bland

tasty

savory

zesty

far-eater

semi-local eater

mostly local eater

near-eater

international

national

regional

local

novice < > expert far < > near

green

semi-ripe

flavorful

sun-ripened

new

ripening

mostly ripe

fully ripened

fry

windowsill

sauce

salad

unripe < > ripened


94 Kelly M. Murdoch-Kitt

people

novice < > expertadvanced intermed.

novice

places of food production, purchase, consumption

chicken coop

expert

positive < > neutral < > negative local

vegetable garden

csa

farm

farmers’ market

grocery store/ co-op

store/ local producer

restaurant

consumption non-local purchase < > local (flavor scale?)

production

local/closest

mostly local/ slightly variable

most variable distance/farthest

fact idea opinion question information recreational group

non-profit

for-profit

no

educational institution

pos

no

gov’t or policy org

individual: personal content

applicable information not nec. attached to a physical location

individual: personal content

fac

restaurant

people

novice

iable distance/farthest

places of food production, purchase, consumption

ntermed.

farm

advanced

csa

farmers’

chicken coop

expert

local store/

intermed.

vegetable garden

purchase

farmers’ market

expert

local store/ local producer

restaurant

indivi perso cont

grocery store/ co-op

restaurant

consumption mostly local/ slightly variable individual: personal content

local/closest

grocery

csa

farm

production

advanced

individual: most variable distance/farthest personal content


local/closest

mostly local/ slightly variable

most variable distance/farthest

95 shape = place

slider = distance/local-ness

shape = specific type of place color = distance/local-ness How does this system address in-between iems, like a farm that sells food or a grocery store where one can eat?

shape = distance/local-ness color = specific type of place

appendix | early iconographic studies: places

color = specific type


Kelly M. Murdoch-Kitt

96

individual: personal content

individual: personal content

person

restaurant distributor producer

ingredient map


97

relationship

you are here

store = create shopping list another userâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s recipe

appendix | early iconographic studies: connections

farm/product


Kelly M. Murdoch-Kitt

98

how does form, occuring

consumers

during

before

after

user interaction basic structural component

wall

browser

mobile

wall

browser

mobile

wall

browser

mobile

consumers

consumers

user identity

DEE

recipe

stuffed cabbage

DEE

DEE

recipe

recipe

recipe

stuffed cabbage

level of expertise

consumers

stuffed cabbage

stuffed cabbage

DEE

recipe

communicate/ address the project’s core questions of: individual identity

stuffed cabbage ADD RECIPE TO MY MAP

novice

novice bean flavorless

sprout participation/contributions palatable

novice advanced bean seedling flavorless tempting

appetizing

unseasoned flavorful

bland

tasty

bland savory

far-eater

semi-local eater

far-eater mostly local eater

international

national

unseasoned

international regional

novice < > expert far < > near

flavorless unseasoned

4 cups wheat berries 1 onion, minced 4 eggs parsley salt pepper

intermed. expert sprout plant

advanced

“”

participation/contributions palatable delectable

expert

novice

intermed.

advanced novice

expert intermed.

novice advanced

intermed. expert

advanced

expert

seedling

plant

bean

sprout

seedling bean

plant sprout

bean seedling

sprout plant

seedling

plant

tempting

delectable

flavorless

palatable

flavorless tempting

palatable delectable

flavorless tempting

palatable delectable

tempting

delectable

appetizing

scrumptious

unseasoned

appetizing scrumptious

unseasoned flavorful

appetizing scrumptious

flavorful

scrumptious

savory

zesty

bland

tasty

bland savory

tasty zesty

bland savory

tasty zesty

savory

zesty

semi-local near-eatereater

mostly local eater

near-eater

far-eater

semi-local eater

mostly local eater far-eater

near-eater semi-local eater

far-eater mostly local eater

semi-local eater near-eater

mostly local eater

near-eater

national local

regional

local

international

national

national local

regional

local

appetizing scrumptious tasty zesty

flavorful

novice < > expert far < > near

unseasoned flavorful

regional international

novice < > expert far < > near

local national

international regional

novice < > expert far < > near

bland far-eater international

1 cabbage torn into leaves 32 ounces tomato sauce Cook the wheat berries. When soft, pulse them in a food processor to break them up. Mix beaten eggs, parsley, minced onion, salt and pepper to taste. green new fry

novice < > expert far < > near

DEE map interest array: compare

fry

windowsill

novice

intermed.

green flavorful bean newripe mostly flavorless fry sauce

semi-ripe sun-ripened sprout fullyripening ripened palatable windowsill salad

unseasoned

appetizing

bland

tasty

far-eater

semi-local eater

international

national

unripe < > ripened

? advanced

expert

flavorful

sun-ripened

green

semi-ripe

seedling mostly ripe

plant fully ripened

new

ripening consumers

delectable salad

fry

tempting sauce

flavorful unripe < > ripened

windowsill

zesty

mostly local eater

near-eater

regional

local

sun-ripened semi-ripe

green flavorful

semi-ripe sun-ripened

flavorful

sun-ripened

fully ripened ripening

new ripe mostly

ripening fully ripened

mostly ripe

fully ripened

sauce fry

salad windowsill

fry sauce

windowsill salad

sauce

salad

unripe < > ripened

scrumptious

savory

flavorful green mostly new ripe

unripe < > ripened

gardening buddies

volunteer opportunities

produce exchange

concerns pesticides

GMOs

farmland preservation

unripe < > ripened

family farms

drought

topics vegetarian cooking

community gardens

dinner with Raleigh Vegetarian Meetup

novice < > expert far < > near

organic vegetable consumers composting gardening

Robertson seminars: sustainable food systems

produce exchange

events sustainability “Real Food symposium Real Medicine” downtown UNC Raleigh

farmers’ markets

medicinal foods

sustainable food lecture

organic produce

Raleigh vegetarian meetup

personal info neighborhood

novice green bean new flavorless fry

intermed.

advanced

semi-ripe

flavorful

sprout ripening

seedling mostly ripe

palatable windowsill

unseasoned

appetizing

bland

tasty

people

expert sun-ripened consumers plant fully ripened

tempting sauce

delectable salad

flavorful unripe < > ripened

level of expertise

ripening

level of expertise

semi-ripe

new

looking for

consumers

novice

scrumptious

savory

zesty participation/contributions

far-eater international

semi-local eater national

mostly local eater regional

near-eater

novice

green

semi-ripe

flavorful

new

ripening

mostly ripe

fry

windowsill

sauce

intermed.

advanced

expert

local

novice < > expert far < > near

participation/contributions

sun-ripened fully ripened

level of expertise

green

level of expertise

participation/contributions

intermed.

bean

Ingredients: participation/contributionsLOCATE ADD TO MY GROCERY LIST

level of expertise

level of expertise

level of expertise

This is a great winter dish that freezes well.

bean

sprout

seedling

plant

flavorless

palatable

tempting

delectable

unseasoned

appetizing

flavorful

scrumptious

bland

tasty

savory

zesty

far-eater

semi-local eater

mostly local eater

near-eater

international

national

regional

local

unripe < > ripened

participation/contributions

participation/contributions

intermed.

novice advanced

intermed. expert

advanced

bean

sprout

bean seedling

sprout plant

seedling

flavorless

palatable

unseasoned

appetizing

bland

tasty

far-eater

semi-local eater

international

national

green flavorless tempting new unseasoned flavorful fry bland savory far-eater mostly local eater international regional

semi-ripe palatable delectable ripening appetizing scrumptious windowsill

flavorful tempting mostly ripe flavorful sauce

expert plant sun-ripened delectable fully ripened scrumptious salad

tasty zesty

savory

zesty

semi-local eater near-eater

mostly local eater

near-eater

national local

regional

local

unripe < > ripened

expert

seedling

plant

tempting

delectable

unseasoned

appetizing

flavorful

scrumptious

bland

tasty

savory

zesty

far-eater

semi-local eater

mostly local eater

near-eater

international

national

regional

local

novice < > expert far < > near

semi-ripe

flavorful

sun-ripened

new

ripening

mostly ripe

fully ripened

fry

windowsill

sauce

salad

unripe < > ripened

salad

novice

advanced

sprout palatable

green

novice < > expert far < > near

intermed.

bean flavorless


99

during

before

appendix | early discursive/dialogic studies

how does form, occuring

after

user interaction consumers

wall

browser

mobile

wall

consumers

browser

mobile

consumers

wall

browser

communicate/ address the project’s core questions of:

mobile

consumers

consumers

dee

dee

chat

level of expertise

dee

chat

search results 9

dee

consumers

novice

consumers

intermed.

advanced participation/contributions

“Where’s the best place to buy organic vegetable seedling seeds in Raleigh? I think plant I want to try to start my consumers tempting own plants this year.” delectable

consumers

advanced

novice

search results 9 unripe < > ripened

level of expertise

consumers

TAGS: garden, organic, vegetables, seeds, plants

comments 5 level of expertise

level of expertise

level of expertise

join chat novice < > expert far < > near

bean flavorless

“Where’s the best place to buy organic vegetable seeds in Raleigh? I think I want to try to start my own plants this year.”

expert

consumers

level of expertise

intermed.

intermed.

advanced

expert

sprout

michelle palatable

unseasoned bland novice < > expert far < > near

michelle

tasty

savory

“Hi Dee, I’m actually on international consumers my way to Logan’s right unripe < > ripened now. If you want to meet there, I can help you pick out seeds and the novice supplies to start them.” intermed. bean

intermed.flavorless

participation/contributions

participation/contributions unseasoned

bean

consumers

advanced

appetizing

tempting

far-eater

flavorful

international

plant

tasty

delectable

green

semi-local eater

tasty

far-eater

semi-local eater

mostly local eater

international

national

regional

savory

scrumptious

savory

zesty

semi-ripe

zesty

fry

local

novice < > expert far < > near

green

semi-ripe

new

ripening

novice fry

novice < > expert far < > near

consumers green

participation/contributions

new

ripening

fry

windowsill

mostly ripe

bean

flavorless

flavorless unseasoned

sun-ripened bland

fully ripened far-eater

michelle sauce

sauce

bland far-eater

tasty

national

far-eater

semi-local eater

international

national

seedling

michelle

scrumptious

local

intermed.

bean

novice

participation/contributions

intermed.flavorless green

unseasoned

new

bean

sprout

flavorless

palatable

unseasoned

appetizing

bland

fry

far-eater

international

advanced

participation/contributions

sprout

seedling

participation/contributions

advanced palatable

semi-ripe

appetizing

ripening

seedling

flavorful

semi-local eater national

tasty

far-eater

semi-local eater

mostly local eater

international

national

regional

plant

bean

tempting

flavorful

delectable sun-ripened

flavorful

mostly ripe

scrumptiousfully ripened

savory

windowsill delectable

bland

savory

plant

tasty

tempting

participation/contributions novice intermed.flavorless

sauce

mostly local eater unripe < > ripened scrumptious regional

zesty

zesty near-eater

intermed.

salad

unseasoned

sprout

flavorless

palatable

unseasoned

appetizing

bland

tasty

bland far-eater

international

appetizing

seedling

flavorful

mostly local eater

international

national

regional

green

local

windowsill flavorful

new

ripening

mostly ripe

fry

windowsill

sauce

unripe < > ripened semi-ripe

flavorful

sun-ripened

ripening

mostly ripe

fully ripened

sauce

salad

fry semi-ripe

windowsill flavorful

sun-ripened

novice expert

sauce

fully ripened fry salad

sun-ripened fully ripened

sauce

salad

unripe < > ripened expert

seedling

plant

tempting

delectable

flavorful

delectable

sprout

tempting

far-eater near-eater

semi-local eater

green

appetizing

savory

tasty

novice advanced ripening

international

zesty

fully ripened salad

seed

palatable

palatable

temp

appetizing

flavo

tasty

tasty semi-local eater

savo

semi-local eater

mostly lo

national

national

regio

novice <

far < novice < > exper far < > near

fry

regional

savory

local international

flavorful

ripening

mostly ripe

windowsill flavorful

ripening

mostly ripe

windowsill

sauce

unripe < > ripened

sprout

palatable

palatable delectable

tempting

delectable

flavorful

scrumptious

plant

bland savory

tasty zesty

savory

zesty

semi-local eater near-eater

far-eater mostly local eater

semi-local eater near-eater

mostly local eater

near-eater

national local

international regional

national local

regional

local

intermed.

bland zesty

semi-local eater national

advanced

sprout

advanced palatable seedling

appetizing tasty

tempting

national

ripening fullysavory ripened mostly local eater

windowsill salad

regional

novice < > expert far < > near

plant

fully new ripened

ripening

mostly ripe

salad fry

windowsill

sauce

unripe < > ripened

scrumptious

savory

zesty

semi-ripe near-eater sun-ripened local

ripening fully ripened windowsill salad

local

flavorful

sun-ripened

mostly ripe

fully ripened

sauce

salad

sun-ripened

unripe < > ripened fully ripened salad

flavorful

sun-ripened

mostly ripe

fully ripened

sauce

salad

unripe < > ripened

< > ripened

windowsill flavorful

flavorful

regional newripe zesty mostly

ripening

salad fry semi-ripe

plant delectable

green mostly local eater flavorful scrumptious

semi-ripe

fully new ripened

unripe < > ripened

expert

seedling tempting

novice near-eater < > expert fry far < > near sauce

unripe novice < > expert far < > near sun-ripened green

expert

delectable

semi-local eater semi-ripe sun-ripened flavorful

local international

sauce sun-ripened green

< > ripened

sprout plant

ripening

windowsill

windowsill

flavo

mostly unripe <

sau

unripe < > ripen

salad

appetizing scrumptious

near-eater far-eater appetizing tasty

expert

dialogic

unseasoned scrumptious

regional

unripe < > ripened

sauce

advanced

flavorless tempting

plant bean

new mostly ripe sauce

intermed. expert fully ripened

fry

unseasoned flavorful

expert novice

mostly local eater green flavorful unseasoned scrumptious bland zesty

mostly ripe

sun-ripened

palatable delectable

intermed. delectable flavorless

flavorful

novice near-eater < > expert far <far-eater > near fry

flavorful

novice < > expert far < > near

seedling

semi-ripe

new ripened fully

semi-ripe

semi-ripe ripening

appetizing scrumptious

bean unripe seedling

tastyzesty

advanced

plant bean

windowsill

sprout plant

expert novice tempting

delectable flavorless

national

ripening

windowsill

fry salad

bland far-eater

advan

appetizing

international

seedling

international regional

semi-local eater flavorful semi-ripe

green sun-ripened

semi-ripe

local

semi-ripe

intermed. expert new

bland savory

mostly local eater

national

near-eater

regional

sauce

flavorless unseasoned

intermed. sprout

new

sprout

seedling

international local

tasty

savory

mostly local eater

mostly ripe

flavorless

bland

fry sprout

bean

green

intermed.

bland zesty

palatable

tasty

national

new

intermed.

novice

unseasoned

far-eater

scrumptious

sun-ripened

semi-local eater

unripe < > ripened

far-eater mostly local eater

advanced palatable

unseasoned scrumptious

appetizing

flavorful

green

novice bean

discursive

advanced

sprout

ripening

bean seedling

bean plant

intermed.flavorless

mostly ripe green sun-ripened

unripenew< > ripened

flavorful mostly ripe

local

palatable

far-eater

novice advanced

national

flavorful

ripening

fry semi-ripe

near-eater

ripening

green

sprout

novice < > expert far < > near

semi-ripe

new

green

new

international local

novice < > expert far < > near

zesty

semi-ripe

windowsill

new

tasty

novice < > expert far-eater near-eater far < > near fry

plant

salad

semi-local eater

new

expert

bean

appetizing

bland far-eater international

novice < > expert far < > near

fully ripened

bland

savory

local

sun-ripened

far-eater

regional

regional

flavorless

fry

seedling

bland zesty

regional fully ripened

intermed.

windowsill

fully ripened salad intermed.

advanced

flavorless delectable

national

national

novice < > expert far < > near

flavorless tempting

flavorful

zesty near-eater

salad

unseasoned flavorful

bean plant

mostly local eater sun-ripened

fry

fully ripened

palatable

tempting

savory

sun-ripened

appetizing

novice expert

savory

new

international

salad

flavorless

semi-local eater unseasoned mostly local eater green scrumptious

savory

semi-local eater

novice near-eater < > expert far < > near

green

tasty

tempting

far-eater

local

novice < > expert far < > near

green

sauce

sun-ripened

fry fully ripened

unseasoned

sprout

advanced palatable

green

unripe < > ripened

mostly ripe

flavorful

international

bean

expert

tasty

flavorless unseasoned

mostly local eater

delectable

national mostly ripe

bean

delectable

tasty

scrumptious

semi-local eater flavorful

novice

scrumptious

semi-local eater

flavorful

bland

new

flavorful

novice < > expert far < > near

participation/contributions

expert

sauce

bean

novice

novice

mostly ripe

sauce novice unripe < > ripened

dee

flavorful

tempting

semi-ripe

mostly ripe sauce sun-ripened

unripe <flavorful > ripened

windowsill

logan’s trading company

zesty near-eater

regional

novice < > expert far < > near

ripening windowsill

mostly unripe < ripe > ripened

michelle

participation/contributions delectable

mostly local eater

dee

local

ripening

flavorful

ripening

fry

plant

logan’s flavorful trading savory company

tasty

level of expertise

consumers

tempting

appetizing

expert

salad

tempting dialogic info

palatable

appetizing

palatable

unseasoned

green

semi-ripe

windowsill

semi-ripe

windowsill

ripening

plant

appetizing

novice

zesty local

local

regional

semi-ripe

fry

expert

seedling

seedling

salad novice < > expert far < > near unripe < > ripened

local

advanced

sprout

sprout

sauce

near-eater

regional

semi-ripe

new

windowsill zesty

near-eater

novice < > expert

new

green

fry

salad scrumptious

novice < > expert far < > near zesty

novice < >local expert mostly eater > near

far <green > near novice < > expert far < > near new

consumers

salad

unseasoned

level of expertise

level of expertise

dee level of expertise

sun-ripened

unripe < > ripened

savory regional

savory

far < mostly local eater

national

far-eater semi-ripe fully ripened

international ripening

intermed.

scrumptious near-eater scrumptious

national

semi-local eater

fry

fully ripened

fully ripened

tasty

international

advanced

mostly local eater near-eater scrumptious participation/contributions

participation/contributions

flavorful mostly local eater

near-eater local

intermed. > expert

delectable

new

plant

semi-local eater flavorful

zesty

regional novice < > expert

sauce flavorful expert plant

scrumptious

far-eater

savory

national far < > near novice novice <

tempting international tempting national regional delectable delectable tasty savory zesty

palatable

appetizingsemi-local eater flavorful

semi-local eater

international salad

seedling

far-eater appetizing

new

flavorful

participation/contributions palatable

flavorless

participation/contributions

participation/contributions

participation/contributions

palatable bland far-eater appetizing

seedling

bland

expert

far < > near michelle

tempting

expert

delectable

mostly local eaterinternational

localeater semi-local

savory tempting tasty delectable unripe <plant > ripened

bland

seedling

sprout

unseasoned

flavorless unseasoned

advanced

green expert mostly ripe

appetizing advanced seedling

sprout

palatable

sprout

bean

advanced unseasoned windowsill

intermed.

advanced

plant

unseasoned

flavorful

intermed.

near-eater tasty

“Hi Dee, I’m actually on flavorless my way to Logan’s right unripe < > ripened now. If you want to meet unseasoned there, I can help you expert pick outbland seeds and the sun-ripened supplies to start them.” plant

flavorful sprout palatable

fry

sauce

sprout

intermed.

semi-ripe

intermed. advanced ripening flavorless

green

intermed. advanced sun-ripened unripe < > ripened

flavorful

logan’s trading bland company

participation/contributions

bean

unripe < > ripened

mostly ripe

consumers

windowsill

consumers

semi-ripe

unripe < > ripened

level of expertise

intermed. fry

novice

seedling tempting

zesty appetizing

expert

bean flavorless

delectable sprout

bean

bean

novice

advanced

scrumptious palatable

novice

search results 9

green

consumers

“Where’s the best place bland mostly local eater to buy organic vegetable seeds infar-eater Raleigh? I think national regional I want to try to start my join chat international noviceown < > plants expert this year.”

international

international

windowsill

novice near-eater < > expert far < > near

flavorful flavorless

novice

participation/contributions

consumers

tempting participation/contributions bean

semi-local eater

green

flavorful mostly ripe

local

savory unseasoned

intermed. plant

TAGS: garden, organic, < > near comments 5 farvegetables, seeds, plants

bean

near-eater

ripening

regional

tasty

bland

novice new

search results 9

flavorful

dee

local

expert

consumers

level of expertise

delectable

mostly local eater scrumptious

new

national

bland

tempting

palatable appetizing

novice

expert

novice seedling

flavorless

level of expertise

intermed.

palatable

unseasoned

appetizing

seedling

bland

expert

plant

level of expertise

novice

sprout

flavorless

level of expertise

level of expertise

level of expertise

participation/contributions

participation/contributions advanced palatable

seedling

level of expertise

novice

participation/contributions

sprout

advanced

unseasoned

near-eater

comments 5

participation/contributions

sprout

zesty

semi-local eater

dee

intermed. consumers

bean

far-eater

scrumptious

“Himostly Dee, local I’m actually eater on my way to Logan’s right now. If you want national regional participation/contributions consumers to meet there, I can you pick out seeds novice < >help expert the supplies to far < >and near start them.”join chat advanced expert

far-eater

michelle

TAGS: garden, organic, vegetables, seeds, plants flavorful

appetizing

level of expertise

novice

level of expertise

participation/contributions

participation/contributions

level of expertise

dee

novice

expert

level of expertise

participation/contributions

comments 5

search results 9

comments 5

consumers

consumers

discursive info chat

TAGS: garden, organic, vegetables, seeds, plants

consumers

level of expertise

level of expertise

level of expertise

TAGS: garden, organic, vegetables, seeds, plants

comments 5

search results 9

consumers

“Where’s the best place to buy organic vegetable seeds in Raleigh? I think I want to try to start my own plants this year.”

level of expertise

TAGS: garden, organic, vegetables, seeds, plants

dee

“Where’s the best place to buy organic vegetable seeds in Raleigh? I think I want to try to start my own plants this year.”

level of expertise

“Where’s the best place to buy organic vegetable seeds in Raleigh? I think I want to try to start my own plants this year.”


Kelly M. Murdoch-Kitt

100

A physical (graphite) sketch of the virtual community, April 2009


101 thank you

thank you to my virtual and physical communities: Norma, Jonathan, Mark, Sabrina, and Laura Murdoch-Kitt,

for your eternal enthusiasm, understanding, and support

Past and present College of Design classmates and cohorts,

for camaraderie at any hour of the day or night

My committee,

for stimulating discourse and steadfast belief in my ideas

Local friends,

for comforting, feeding, entertaining, and sustaining me

Faraway friends,

for timely visits, telephone therapy, and happy thoughts

Sustainable eaters everywhere,

for prioritizing farmers and flavors

Jim Argenta,

for nourishing my spirit, and for our next chapter together


Strawberry picking near Jordan Lake N.C. Jim Argenta & Kelly Murdoch-Kitt May 2007

Virtual Communication, Physical Community  

Virtual Communication, Physical Community: Leveraging Social Tools to Build a Sustainable Food Network in Raleigh, North Carolina This is t...

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