Case study: Quantified Toilets


Quantified Toilets sign

Quantified Toilets data feed

Objective:

Provoke debate on the future of privacy and surveillance, particularly around infra- structure-level human-sensing technology

Process:

Critical making, speculative design, observations, qualitative analysis, quantitative analysis

Approach:

To spark debate about the future of privacy and surveillance at a large international technology conference (CHI2014), we conducted a thought experiment: we designed and installed bathroom signage that gave the impression that all toilet ‘input’ would be automatically analysed, and the results published online. A corresponding website broadcasted a fictional data feed of the latest samples.

Team:

This project was carried out in collaboration with Matt Dalton, Angela Gabereau, Dr Sarah Gallacher, Dr David H. Nguyen, and Larissa Pschetz.

For more information, see: www.quantifiedtoilets.com

Related media articles:


The Atlantic: 'What a Toilet Hoax Can Tell Us About the Future of Surveillance', 29 April 2014 (link)

Wired: 'Urine analysis hoax prompts health data privacy debate', 2 May 2014 (link)

Gizmodo: 'Your Behavior In This Toilet Is Being Recorded For Analysis', 2 May 2014 (link)

The Daily Dot: 'Would you be OK with pee-testing surveillance toilets?', 5 May 2014 (link)

Yahoo! Japan: '「データ収集する公衆トイレ」は是か非か', 2 May 2014 (link)

PC Tipp: 'Quantified Toilets: Wenn das WC alles über uns weiss', 2 May 2014 (link)

Engadget: 'Quantified Toilets: Überwachungs-Stunt auf CHI-Konferenz', 2 May 2014 (link)

Le Mouv: 'Des WC qui analysent vos données, ça vous tente?', 6 May 2014 (link)

Washington Post: 'What was fake on the Internet this week', 2 May 2014 (link)