In a research project lasting seven months, spanning Amsterdam and Munich, I joined frog and the University of Amsterdam in  the hunt for affect, facing some core assumptions about how emotion is made and measured. The result calls for a turn to playful user profiling drawn from diary-style content to aid the design process. A concept titled Emocamera was born: a playful, social and creative mobile-camera tool that gathers knowledge of people’s lived experiences, feelings and hopes in their own words and images.

Emotions are some of our most deeply private and personal experiences. Cocooned in an intimate cluster of our personality, life stories and DNA, most times they are completely inscrutable, even to us. Yet, in the chartered tundra of emotion research, explorers hunt for affective charges. Running wild these charges are released into the atmosphere during our everyday tasks, interactions and encounters. Do you feel fascination or amusement right now? Did your feeling of content collapse into rage when your coffee machine demanded a filter clean this morning? Does your mobile phone intimidate you?

What makes the hunt so addictive is the holy grail it offers: the revelation of emotional patterning and an understanding of people’s motivation and ultimately behaviour. In the context of design, capturing emotional charge offers the shining promise of understanding how specific design elements and emotion relate. It gives us access to a world where emotional responses shape the design agenda of everything we use and own.

READ the white paper from this research project HERE.

About frog:
frog works with the world’s leading companies, helping them to design, engineer, and bring to market meaningful products and services. With an interdisciplinary team of more than 1,000 designers, strategists, and software engineers, frog delivers connected experiences that span multiple technologies, platforms, and media. frog works across a broad spectrum of industries, including consumer electronics, telecommunications, healthcare, energy, automotive, media, entertainment, education, finance, retail, and fashion. Clients include Disney, GE, HP, Intel, Microsoft, MTV, Qualcomm, Siemens, and many other Fortune 500 brands. Founded in 1969, frog is headquartered in San Francisco, with locations in Amsterdam, Austin, Boston, Bangalore, Johannesburg, Kiev, Milan, Munich, New York, Seattle, Shanghai, and Vinnitsa. frog is a company of the Aricent Group, a global innovation and technology services firm.