Thinking by Doing

Albert Chang's thinking

[R note] finding peaks

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findPeaks(x, thresh=0)
findValleys(x, thresh=0)


p = findPeaks(sin(seq(1,10,.1)))

peaks(x, y=NULL, mode="maxmin")
x <- sin(seq(0, 10, 0.1))
points(peaks(x), col="red", pch=15)


Written by hmch17

四月 23, 2012 at 11:37 下午


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The archetype in dream symbolism (by Carl Jung)

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Dreams serve the purpose of compensation. This assumption means taht the dream is a normal psychic phenomenon that transmits unconscious reactions or spontaneous impulses to consciousness.

But when it is a matter of obsessive dreaming or of highly emotional dreams, the personal associations produced by the dreamer do not usually suffice for a satisfactory interpretation.  …. elements often occur in a dream that are not individual and that cannot be derived from the dreamer’s personal experience, which is Freud called “archaic remnants", mental forms whose presence cannot be explained by anything in the individual’s own life and which seem to be aboriginal, innate, and inherited shapes of the human mind.

The experienced investigator of the mind can similarly see the analogies between the dream pictures of modern man and the products of the primitive mind, its “collective images" and its mythological motifs.

Jung call Freud’s “archaic remnants" as “archetype" or “primordial images". Archetype is a tendency to from such representations of a motif- representations that can vary a great deal in detail without losing their basic pattern. Archetypes are instinctive trend, as marked as the impulse of birds to build nests, or ants to form organized colonies.

The relationship between instincts and archetypes: What we properly call instincts are physiological urges, and are perceived by the senses. But at the same time, they also manifest themselves in fantasies and often reveal their presence only by symbolic images.

Written by hmch17

三月 10, 2011 at 2:41 上午


Consciousness: An Introduction by Susan Balckmore

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Chapter. 1

P. 24

Philosophical theories

Monist : one kind of stuff  ; Dualist : two kinds of stuff

Empiricist: George Berkeley (1685-1753) replaces matter with sensations in minds. Materialist: there is only matter, not minds. These theories includes identity theory, which makes mental states identical with physical states, and functionalism, which equates mental states with functional states.

Epiphenomenalism(機械行為主義): Consciousness is powerless to affect the machinery of human brain and body. problem: if it’s true, we could never know about, or able to speak about, consciousness since this would mean it had had an effect. Nevertheless, behaviorism is built on one version of this idea.

Panpsychism(泛心靈論): everything essentially mental, including conscious and unconscious mind. Question: is a stone aware? electron? why should there simultaneously be physical and mental properties to everything?

Dualism: Rene Descartes(笛卡爾), Cartesian dualism, Substance dualism. The world consists of two different kinds of stuff – the extended stuff of which physical bodies are made, and the unextended, thinking stuff of which minds are made. Problem: the interaction has to be in both directions. If it’s true, thoughts and feelings could affects brain cells (which is not). If it’s true, it’s also physical stuff, not purely mental. Problem: the dogma of the mental ghost in the corporeal machine (category mistake) “Accepting dualism is giving up" (Dennett, 1991)


Consciousness In Psychology

The Principles of Psychology (William James, 1890): “Psychology is the Science of Mental Life, both of its phenomena and their conditions."

Weber-Fechner Law:

Hermann von helmholtz (1850) proposed the idea that perceptions are “unconscious inferences", close to Richard Gregory’s notion(1966) of perceptions as hypotheses, or guesses about the world, and it fits well with much of modern neuroscience. James(1902) also talked about “unconscious cerebration." This idea, that much of what goes on in the nervous system is unconscious and that our conscious experiences depend on unconscious processing, seems quite natural to us today, but deeply disturbing to Victorian scientists who assumed that inference and thinking, as well as ethics and morality, require consciousness. TO them, the idea that thinking could go on without consciousness seemed to undermine the moral or spiritual superiority of ‘Man.’

Sigmund Freud: the impulse of the ‘id’ including biological desires and needs, the defense mechanisms and neurotic processes of the ‘ego,’ and all the mass of unwanted or unacceptable material that had been repressed by the ‘superego’

Phenomenology: Franz Brentano, every subjective experience is an act of reference. Conscious experiences are about objects or events, while physical objects are not about anything. This “aboutness" he called “intentionality." Wilhelm Wundt, the father of experimental psychology, build a psychology based on studying from the inside, introspection. The study must be systematic and rigorous, so he trained people to make precise and reliable observations of their own inner experience. He claimed to find 2 psychical elements: the objective elements (sensations) and the subjective elements(simple feelings).
Problem: they faced apparently insuperable problems in dealing with disagreements.

Behaviorism: John B. Watson (1913) establish psychology as “a purely objective branch of natural science"; its theoretical goal being the prediction and control of behavior. Behaviorism recognizes no dividing line between man and brute. Behaviorism was enormously successful in explaining some kinds of behavior, especially in the areas of learning and memory, but it abolished the study of consciousness from psychology.

Cognitive Psychology: It emphasizes on internal representations and information processing. but consciousness is still something of a dirty word in psychology.


The Mysterious GAP

Hard Problem(David Chalmers, 1994): is to explain how physical processes in the brain give rise to subjective experience. The hard problem concerns experience itself, that is, subjectivity or “what it is like to be…" It is the problem of crossing the “fathomless abyss" or “chasm," or of bridging the “explanatory gap" between the objective material brain and the subjective world of experience.

The “easy problems" of consciousness are those that are susceptible to the standard methods of cognitive science, and might be solved, which include the ability to discriminate, categorize and read to stimuli; the integration of information by cognitive systems; the reportability of mental states; the focus of attention deliberate control of behavior; and the difference between wakefulness and sleep.

Many neuroscientists believe that once we understand the easy problems, the hard problem will disappear.

In 1983 Joseph Levine coined the phrase “the explanatory gap", describing it as “a metaphysical gap between physical phenomena and conscious experience" (Levine, 2001:78)

Chapter. 2

Phenomenal consciousness / Phenomenality (Ned Block, 1995): phenomenal consciousness is experience; what makes a state phenomenally conscious is that there is something ‘it is like’ to be in that state.

Access consciousness is availability for use in reasoning and rationally guiding speech and action (Block, 1995: 227).

…The experience is private, ineffable and has a quality all its own. These private qualities are known, in philosophy, as qualia (pronounced qua-lay).
Qualia (dictionary): The internal and subjective component of sense perceptions, arising from stimulation of the senses by phenomena.

Dennett (1988) claims that there are no such properties as qualia. But he does not deny the reality of conscious experience, or of the things we say and the judgments we make about our own experiences, but only of the special, ineffable, private, subjective “raw feels," or “the way things seem to us," that people call qualia. Example: People hate the first taste of beer, but why they changed? the taste or the opinion?

Thought experiments are not designed to provide reliable answers to anything. Rather, they help to clarify our thinking. “Mary the Color Scientist": Surprised, you believe that consciousness, subjective experience, or qualia are something additional to knowledge of the physical world. Not surprised, you believe that knowing all the physical facts tells you everything there is to know- including what it is like to experience something.

Is consciousness an extra ingredient that we humans have in addition to our abilities of perceiving, thinking, and feeling? or is it an intrinsic and inseparable part of being a creature that can perceive and think and feel?

Case 1: which means we might have evolved without it, and so why consciousness evolved, what advantages it gave us, and whether it evolved in other creatures too? The Hard problem, which is indeed hard, makes sense.

Case 2: (Some version is called functionalism) There is no use to asking why consciousness evolved because any creature that evolved to have intelligence, perception, memory, and emotions would necessarily be conscious as well. Also there would be no sense in talking about ‘consciousness itself’ or about ‘ineffable qualia’, for there is nothing extra that exists apart from the processes and abilities. No hard problem. The following task is to explain why there seems to be such a problem and why we seem to be having ineffable, non-physical, conscious experiences.

Philosopher’s Zombies : If Case 1 is true, anyone might be evolved without consciousness, and others could never recognize it as a zombie. If Case 2 is true, there’s no zombie.

Does consciousness have power?

No. epiphenomenon argues that consciousness is useless. If so, how could we end up worrying about it, even talking about it?  The bottom line for this kind of theory is that we are deluded. We feel consciousness is a power or added ability, but we are wrong. The author call it “delusionism."

In the 19th century, the ‘father of modern psychology’, William James (1842–1910), coined the phrase ‘the stream of consciousness.’

Dennett coined the term ‘Cartesian materialist’ to describe those scientists who claim to reject dualism but still believe in the Cartesian theatre.

They may, of course, be right, and if they are, then the task of a science of consciousness is to explain what that metaphorical theatre corresponds to in the brain and how it works.

Ch.5  the Self

ego theory

Attempt to find the neural correlates of the self, or to explain the self in terms of enduring structures in the brain. The major religions almost all are ego theories. The existence of such personal selves underlies doctrines about identity, life after death, and moral responsibility. Buddhism alone rejects the idea of self. Buddha argues that human suffering is caused by ignorance and in particular by clinging to a false notion of self. That is not to say that the self does not exist, but that it is illusory, or not what it seems. Everything is dependent upon prior causes and nothing arises independently; as in the modern idea that the universe is interdependent and causally closed. He also claims that ‘Actions exist, and also their consequences, but the person that acts does not’.

bundle theory
the self is not an entity but is more like a ‘bundle of sensations’; one’s life is a series of impressions that seem to belong to one person but are really just tied together by memory and other such relationships.

Splitting Brains

To cure Epilepsy(癲癇) in 1950s and 1960s, the drastic operation was performed, leaving the brain stem and some other connections intact. Without the corpus callosum most of the usual traffic between right and left hemisphere stops.

Written by hmch17

三月 5, 2011 at 12:04 上午



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An archetype is an original model of a person, ideal example, or a prototype upon which others are copied, patterned, or emulated; a symbol universally recognized by all.

In psychology, an archetype is a model of a person, personality, or behavior. Archetypes since Plato at least, refer to ideal forms of the perceived or sensible things or types. The use of archetypes to illuminate personality and literature was advanced by Carl Jung early in the 20th century, who suggested the existence of universal contentless forms that channel experiences and emotions, resulting in recognizable and typical patterns of behavior with certain probable outcomes. Archetypes are cited as important to both ancient mythology and modern narratives, as argued by Joseph Campbell in works such as The Hero With a Thousand Faces.

The concept of psychological archetypes was advanced by the Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jung, c. 1919. In Jung’s psychological framework archetypes are innate, universal prototypes for ideas and may be used to interpret observations. A group of memories and interpretations associated with an archetype is a complex, e.g. a mother complex associated with the mother archetype. Jung treated the archetypes as psychological organs, analogous to physical ones in that both are morphological constructs that arose throughevolution.[3]

Jung outlined five main archetypes;

  • TheSelf, the regulating center of the psyche and facilitator ofindividuation
  • TheShadow, the opposite of theegoimage, often containing qualities with which the ego does not identify, but which it possesses nonetheless
  • TheAnima, the feminine image in a man’s psyche;or:
  • TheAnimus, the masculine image in a woman’s psyche
  • ThePersona, how we present to the world, is another of ‘the subpersonalities, the complexes and usually protects the Ego from negative images (acts like a mask)

Jung also outlined what he called archetypes of transformation. Not personality constructs, they are situations, places, ways and means that symbolize the transformation in question (CW9i:81). These archetypes exist primarily as energy – and are useful in organizational development, personal and organizational change management, and extensively used in place branding. As with any archetype, image takes priority over language. In a personal exploration of the Self, archetypes play an important role in the process of individuation.

Jung rejected the tabula rasa([哲]白紙般的心靈) theory of human psychological development, believing instead that evolutionary pressures have individual predestinations manifested in archetypes. For Jung, “the archetype is the introspectively recognizable form of a priori psychic orderedness".[1] These images must be thought of as lacking in solid content, hence as unconscious. They only acquire solidity, influence, and eventual consciousness in the encounter with empirical facts."[2]

The archetypes form a dynamic substratum common to all humanity, upon the foundation of which each individual builds his own experience of life, developing a unique array of psychological characteristics. Thus, while archetypes themselves may be conceived as a relative few innate nebulous forms, from these may arise innumerable images, symbols and patterns of behavior. While the emerging images and forms are apprehended consciously, the archetypes which inform them are elementary structures which are unconscious and impossible to apprehend. Being unconscious, the existence of archetypes can only be deduced indirectly by examining behavior, images, art, myths, etc. They are inherited potentials which are actualized when they enter consciousness as images or manifest in behavior on interaction with the outside world.
The archetype is a crucial Jungian concept. Its significance to analytical psychology has been likened to that of gravity for Newtonian physics.[4]


The origins of the archetypal hypothesis date back as far as Plato. Jung himself compared archetypes to Platonic εἶδος (eidos). Plato’s ideas were pure mental forms, that were imprinted in the soul before it was born into the world. They were collective in the sense that they embodied the fundamental characteristics of a thing rather than its specific peculiarities. In fact many of Jung’s Ideas were prevalent in Athenian philosophy. The archetype theory can be seen as a psychological equivalent to the philosophical idea of forms and particulars.


See:Murray Stein著,朱侃如譯,《榮格心靈地圖》(Jung’s Map of The Soul),台北,立緒文化,初版六刷,2005,p287。

榮格的心靈觀點定,心靈沿著某種量表移動,這個量表的界限逐步消失而進入「類似心靈的」領域。榮格承認,他是從布魯勒(Bleuler)那裡借用這個形容 詞術語的。布魯勒把「類似心靈的」(des Psychoide)定義為「所有身體與中央神經系統具目的性、記憶和保生命功能的總體,那些我們習於稱心靈的大腦皮質功能除外。」布魯勒在此區別了: (a):心靈的功能,包括榮格所謂的自我意識與無意識(個人的與集體的),以及(b)其他身體與中央神經系統生命保護功能,它們的某些功能與心靈近似。身 體本身能夠記憶學習。例如一旦你學會騎腳踏車,你便不需要刻意回想騎車的技巧。身體會保存如何騎車的記憶。身體同時也具有目的性,會在心靈的範疇外,以它 自己的方式掙扎求存,保護生命。榮格的研究基本上是在有關心靈的、準心靈的,與非心靈的這組定義內進行的。(ibid:p122-123)

  1. C. G. Jung, Synchronicity (London 1985) p. 140
  2. Jung 1928:Par. 300
  3. Boeree, C. George. “Carl Jung". Retrieved 2006-03-09.
  4. Stevens, Anthony in “The Archetypes" (Chapter 3.) Ed. Papadopoulos, Renos. The Handbook of Jungian Psychology (2006).








Written by hmch17

二月 24, 2011 at 10:27 下午


aesthetic of use

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“an aesthetics of use is an aesthetics which, through the interactivity made possible by computing, seeks a developing and more nuanced cooperation
with the object – a cooperation which, it is hoped, might enhance social contact and everyday experience. Such an aesthetics, clearly, attends less to how an object looks, the traditional concern of product aesthetics, than to how it behaves."

Dunne, A. (1999). Hertzian Tales: electronic products, aesthetic experience and critical design. London: RCA CRD Research publications.

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二月 14, 2011 at 9:12 下午


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[Thinking] 我心目中的互動設計

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劃出範疇的同時,就是在做重新定義的動作。這個起手式我認為是互動的核心,也是互動設計師的專業之首要。對我來說,要成為好的互動設計師,技術的純熟程度只是充要條件,必要條件則是在於能夠精準地從抽象的現象中提取脈絡的核心。 當互動設計師所面對的現象是抽象的,如何找到待解決的問題? 解決方案如何成型? 該選擇何種形式與素材?每個步驟都是一次又一次的檢視現況並重新定義。而當重新定義能夠在反覆進行之後達到精準,即便執行手法不夠細膩對於這個設計的成功仍瑕不掩瑜。這同時也是我對互動設計的評估方式: 即使Form的細膩有待改進,但提出的設計概念能夠適切地嵌入脈絡,那這個互動設計就可算是成功的設計了。



對於現象,我習慣將其拆解為「時間」、「空間」、「參與者」。「空間」是指相對固定的週邊環境,「參與者」則是相對於空間而言是動態(Active)的人事物、在整個歷程中曾發生過改變或者促成改變的人事物。而「時間」則是用於檢視整個歷程的轉變,看到整個現象的脈絡動線。在初期的使用者觀察、脈絡洞察,這也是我習慣用以設計訪談的主軸。而互動發生在哪裡呢? 隨著時間的進行,在空間中,參與者具有感知(perception)、因知識與文化背景而產生理解(comprehension)、產生動機(intension)、發生行為(behavior),最後產生內在或外在的變化。Bill Verplank則簡化到三個階段: how do you know, how do you do, how do you feel。只是我認為參與者不一定是"you"。當主人帶狗狗出去玩的時候,狗狗也是參與者了,這也是我在前面說的,以使用者(User)為思考本位不一定就是無敵,特別是在互動裡面,不一定會真正去Use什麼東西或者什麼服務,舉例來說,在夜市裡面閒晃就已經是在參與互動了。

而互動設計的切入,大致可分為兩種: 改善缺點、提昇優點。好像在講廢話,設計本來就是一直在做這兩件事。不過,這邊我特別想講的是: 我們眼中的優點跟缺點不一定是真的優點跟缺點。回到剛剛說的脈絡,脈絡有其關鍵的特色,而這個特色不能單純以機能性去衡量的。舉個前陣子熱呼呼的Sixth Sense為例,雙手一比就可以拍照,易用性當然是A++打死實體相機,但是有誰捨得放棄握著相機按下快門的那個紮實感? 以照相經驗來說,照片雖然是這個歷程的最後結果,但是這個結果佔整個經驗全部的比例有大到可以忽略按下快門的感動嗎? 當所有事情都以雙手解決時,我們還剩多少感動在生活裡? 以上一段切畫出來的類別來看,照相經驗中卻沒有照相機,等於把這個脈絡中的關鍵參與者之一「相機」給拿掉了,而最關鍵的moment也硬生生被拔掉了。因此,Sixth Sense無疑是一項創新,但是拍照的應用我始終無法為他鼓掌。所以,從脈絡出發的互動設計,我們要改善的是相對於脈絡的真正缺點,我們要提昇的是原本脈絡中的核心價值。比照UCD,或許我心目中的互動設計可說是 Context-Centered Design。

最近對於「為設計而設計」有新的解讀,也就是「創造一個新問題,解決它,然後發現原來的情況並沒有改善或提昇」。這也常發生在初入互動的時候(身為過來人的痛阿,即使現在也常犯這樣的錯),常常會「為了互動而互動」。原本的情況好端端的,塞了一大堆科技技術去改善相對於脈絡不成特色的部份(搞不好還比原來的更糟)。對於科技創新,可能因為我個人對於技術始終苦手的關係,總是喜歡低科技的解決方式,甚至對於無科技的解決方式更感到迷戀,我也相信,無科技一樣可以是互動設計,甚至是更難以達到的境界。特別是常常看到技術的蛋塔熱會出現在學校學生的作品概念中,硬是要在悠閒的村莊蓋一棟科技大樓那樣格格不入,互動本來就存在於各種現象之中,我們可以用科技讓互動更好,但不會只因為有科技才有互動,誤把科技創新當成互動設計往往是外界的誤解。而不同於工業設計進行創造物品的思維,日前Keynes和Howie被CHI2010收錄的論文 iCon: utilizing everyday objects as additional, auxiliary and instant tabletop controllers 提出的是將每日物品(everyday object)賦予互動功能。可以想見,這樣的論文出現在CHI這個向來科技本位的研討會,意味著即使是人機介面領域也意識到脈絡本身的價值。真正好的互動設計,它一直存在在脈絡的某處,只是等著被設計師把它體現而已。就像米開朗基羅說的: I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free.

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六月 3, 2010 at 1:32 上午


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[Reading] CHI 2010 Where is my team? Supporting Situation Awareness with Tactile Displays

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Session: Interaction in the world

Pielot, M., Krull, O., & Boll, S. (2010). Where is my team: supporting situation awareness with tactile displays. In Proceedings of the 28th international conference on Human factors in computing systems (pp. 1705-1714). Atlanta, Georgia, USA: ACM. doi:10.1145/1753326.1753581




狀況認知(Situation Awareness)有三個階段:感知、理解、映射。應用在真實生活中,人們集體行動時對隊友的位置的判斷亦是一種狀況認知。一般使用視覺與聽覺兩種感知能力即可,但是在演唱會這種視覺被阻擋、聽覺被干擾,而且心力都集中在舞台上的情形,視覺聽覺的認知資源使用已接近極限,對同行友人的位置與去向成為一個困難的挑戰。mobile device雖然可以提供資訊,但是在昏暗吵雜的情況下也難以使用。因此使用觸覺來告知隊友位置與動向,假設有效的理由在於: 觸覺幾乎沒有使用,觸覺認知資源仍非常豐沛,並且不會干擾其他資源的應用。



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五月 31, 2010 at 1:47 上午


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