Amber Case is a cyborg anthropologist and user experience designer from Portland, Oregon. She studies the interaction between humans and computers and how our relationship with information is changing the way cultures think, act, and understand their worlds. Case is currently a fellow at Harvard University’s Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society.
Case was the co-founder and former CEO of Geoloqi, a location-based software company acquired by Esri in 2012. She spoke about the future of the interface for SXSW 2012’s keynote address, and her TED talk, “We are all cyborgs now,” has been viewed over a million times. Named one of National Geographic’s Emerging Explorers, she’s been listed among Inc. Magazine’s 30 under 30 and featured among Fast Company’s Most Influential Women in Technology. In 2008, Case she founded CyborgCamp, an unconference on the future of humans and computers.
Case is the author of An Illustrated Dictionary of Cyborg Anthropology and Calm Technology as well as numerous articles on the web. You can follow her on Twitter @caseorganic and learn more at caseorganic.com.
Speaking and Consulting
A TED speaker and author, Case enjoys meeting and interacting with interesting audiences all over the world. Her speeches range from the future of technology and humanity to telecom, location-based applications and anthropology.
Click for high resolution photos of Amber Case. All photos credit Daniel Root.
Calm Technology: Designing for the Next Generation of Devices
O’Reilly Books, Oct 2015
Available through O’Reilly’s Prerelease program Summer 2015.
Follow @calmtech for updates.
Case’s perspective on the Internet of Things totally re-wires our view of technology. Researchers at XEROX Parc were tackling the problems facing the Internet of Things back in the 70s, but now, too many people in tech are making the same mistakes, with executives intent on adding new features to their devices, because that’s the model they’re used to.
In the next 5-10 years, we’re going to have a whole class of connected devices, but we’re still focused on building technology that’s complex and code heavy. We’re already encountering this problem now, with heavy applications struggling to work on connected smartphones with minimal battery life and consumer attention. So we’re going to see a return to lower level device languages — LEGO-type projects that reward interoperability, instead of the walled gardens we have now. Expect a massive sea change, because successful technology for the IoT era will become really simple, with minimal interfaces. The future of the Internet of Things will be driven by “Calm Technology” – elegant, humane, unobtrusive.
An Illustrated Dictionary of Cyborg Anthropology
CreateSpace, Jan 2014
What does it mean to have an online persona? How is technology changing the way we work, live and play? How do our tools influence the way we interact with the world? Technology is intertwined with almost every aspect of our lives. Our cell phones, cars and laptops have turned us into cyborgs. Cyborg Anthropology is a way of exploring how we live as a connected species.
This book explores topics such as junk sleep, hyperlinked memories, panic architecture, the quantified self, and how humans are changing through the use of technology. This book is an appetizer for an emerging field of study, an inspirational starting point for designers, developers, researchers, students, and anyone who wishes to explore the symbiotic relationship between technology and culture.