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Open Questions and Challenges

The main question I was interested in for this project was less about the question of collecting experiences and more about the question of what happens when we share those experiences with others, who have not experienced it in the same way. Especially when looking at chronic pain, which is a very individual experience, I think that this project brings up the question of interpretation and misunderstanding. When thinking about the sequence and interactions I designed with the rocks turning on and off the lights of the paired zen gardens, what comes to mind is what state of mind does the user perform the act with and how would the other perceive that action.

For example, the family member may cover the light for various reasons and states of mind, such as (1) the light is annoying them; (2) they are trying to cover the patient’s pain for them; (3) they are acknowledging the presences of the patient's pain. While the patient may interpret the lighting up reaction from the family member covering the light from many different ways, such as (1) the family member is ignoring their pain; or (2) the family member is acknowledging the presences of their pain. But the question that arises is how would they know what the other is thinking when they are performing that action. I think this disconnection between action/gesture and user perception, especially between two separate people in different location, is something that will be important to think about as we continue to think about the concept of memory and experience. 

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