Self-Reflection and Personal Physicalization Construction

Alice Thudt, Uta Hinrichs, Samuel Huron, Sheelagh Carpendale

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Self-reflection is a central goal of personal informatics systems, and constructing visualizations from physical tokens has been found to help people reflect on data. However, so far, constructive physicalization has only been studied in lab environments with provided datasets. Our qualitative study investigates the construction of personal physicalizations in people's domestic environments over 2-4 weeks. It contributes an understanding of (1) the process of creating personal physicalizations, (2) the types of personal insights facilitated, (3) the integration of self-reflection in the physicalization process, and (4) its benefits and challenges for self-reflection. We found that in constructive personal physicalization, data collection, construction and self-reflections are deeply intertwined. This extends previous models of visualization creation and data-driven self-reflection. We outline how benefits such as reflection through manual construction, personalization, and presence in everyday life can be transferred to a wider set of digital and physical systems.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 2018 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems
Place of PublicationNew York, NY, USA
PublisherACM Association for Computing Machinery
ISBN (Print)9781450356206
Publication statusPublished - 19 Apr 2018
Event2018 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems - Montreal, Canada
Duration: 21 Apr 201826 Apr 2018


Conference2018 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems
Abbreviated titleCHI 2018


  • Self-Reflection
  • Constructive Visualization
  • Personal Data


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