Managing Our Digital Legacies – Richard Banks, Microsoft Research [Video]

Managing Our Digital Legacies – Richard Banks, Microsoft Research [Video]

The Microsoft Research designer introduces the reality of online selves and what they mean for our future.

Karen Summerson
  • 21 october 2012

Family heirlooms are beginning to include digital files, in addition to unique, physical objects. Richard Banks, Principal Interaction Designer at Microsoft Research, has begun to grapple with this reality and presented possible future outlets at PSFK CONFERENCE LONDON. The company focuses on social science, performing field research and exploring how technology works to integrate human motivations into everyday life – digital legacies have become a pressing issue.

Banks and his team have created several prototypes, all of which work to archive files posted on popular social media sites. They include the Back-Up Box, which saves tweets and posts them on a screen, a Flickr Presentation Box, which displays a person’s photos, and Timecard, a timeline of a person’s life made from their photos and biographical information.

Banks also discussed the complications of information ownership. First, that a single file posted online becomes a network of files, as comments are added and digital connections are created; what was a single object has become a complicated network. Also a problem is the intent of the file(s) – were they made with the intent of creating content or were they participatory, or even private? All these questions will impact file transfer in the future.

Some highlights from the talk:

  • Digital files provide non-tangible heirlooms which can be preserved in different ways.
  • Constantly upgraded technology makes it difficult to imagine files will be displayed in the future.
  • Some files weren’t created with the intent of showing others.
  • Pictures posted on social network sites complicate matters of ownership.

Richard Banks / Microsoft Research

Want to hear more inspiring talks at PSFK events? Click below to buy tickets for PSFK CONFERENCE SAN FRANCISCO 2012.


Wearable Tech Expert: Designing Technology To Empower Connection To Ourselves

Retail Today

Why Experiential Events Could Replace Trade Shows

Marketers are seeking creative and impactful new ways to connect with influencers

Technology Today

Modular Kit Teaches Kids How To Make Their Own Robots

MODI features magnetic modules and a platform for programming to encourage experimentation


Get PSFK's Related Report: Future of Automotive

See All
Infants Today

Work Table Doubles As A Baby Seat

Designer Kunsik Choi created the furniture to facilitate emotional communication between between parents and their children

Arts & Culture Today

Album Turns Into Something New Each Time It’s Streamed

Bill Baird's new album explores the relationship between time and music through a website crafted by design team, One Pixel Wide

Related Expert

Tristan Pollock

Temporary Retail Expert

Technology Today

Wearable Device And Lamp Recreate Beautiful Sunsets In Your Home

Sun Memories can record up to six hours of natural light and reproduce it via a connected light at a later date

Design & Architecture Today

Flower Pencils Create Cherry Blossom Petals When Sharpened

A Japanese stationary company developed the special implements in order to create unique shavings

Augmented & Virtual Reality Today

The Simpsons Is Stepping Into The World Of VR

To celebrate their 600th episode, the animated family sitcom created a virtual reality version of their opening gag


Future Of Automotive
Scenarios Driving The Digital Transformation Of An Industry

PSFK Op-Ed Today

Health Expert: Nutritional Meal Replacements Are A Solution To Corporate Wellness

Ample Foods Founder Conner Young explains why supplements are the next food trend coming to the workplace

PSFK Labs october 12, 2016

PSFK Picks: Top 5 Performance-Enhancing Wearables

Our new report looks at innovations pioneering the future of performance through intelligent activewear and predictive analytics

Syndicated Yesterday

Museum Exhibit Celebrates Strange Architectural Contraptions

Artist William Heath Robinson's peculiar genius is on display in this recent show with wiggling ducts, jumbles of planks and coils of cable

Food Yesterday

This Sensor Will Help You Brew The Perfect Cup Of Tea Every Time

42Tea is a small device that guides you through every step of the brewing process, even identifying the type of leaves being used

Design & Architecture Yesterday

Norwegian Mountaineering Center Mimics A Snow-Capped Mountain

The structure's exterior is clad in a uniform surface of pixels to create a unique climbing experience

Gaming & Play Yesterday

Shopping Bag Turns Your Hands Into A LEGO

Designers from the School of Visual Arts thought up the Playbox Bag for a competition

Sustainability Yesterday

Giant Coffee Cups Encourage People To Recycle Their Morning Cup Of Joe

The Hubbub Foundation has created a set of themed bins meant to inspire recycling on a large scale

Home Yesterday

Small Device Creates A Personal Weather Station Inside In Your Home

Netatmo's new sensor is a standalone air quality monitor that can measure humidity, purity, noise and temperature

Travel Yesterday

Advertising Proposal Aims To Be The Most “Instagrammable Billboard In The World”

The Belltower in Los Angeles would allow video advertising and live event streaming, and include a pedestrian plaza for visitors

No search results found.