Narcís Parés is a Tenured Associate Professor at the ICT Department (DTIC) of Universitat Pompeu Fabra (Barcelona, Spain). He has 30 years of experience working in technologies associated with Extended Reality. His research is focused on Full-body Interaction based on theories of Embodied Cognition, Human-Computer Interaction, Developmental Psychology, etc. He leads the Full-Body Interaction Lab (FuBIntLab) within the Department. His approach starts from Interaction Design, Interactive Communication and Interaction Models. His background is: PhD in Audiovisual Communication -specialized in Virtual Reality- (UPF), MSc in Image Processing and Artificial Intelligence (UAB) and BSc in Computer Engineering (UPC). He was co-creator and has been coordinator for ten years of the Interdisciplinary Master in Cognitive Systems and Interactive Media (UPF). He has been secretary of the Audiovisual University Institute (IUA of UPF, 2006-2010) and head of the Interactive Systems Laboratory (IUA, 2000-2010). He is co-founder and scientific director of Galeria Virtual (1993-2000), where he directed the technological aspects of a number of experimental Virtual Reality productions applied to contemporary art. He is member of the Steering Committee of the ACM SIGCHI International Conference on Interaction Design and Children, and member of the Editorial Board of the International Journal of Child Computer Interaction, Elsevier, as well as of the Multimodal Technologies and Interaction Journal (MDPI). He is currently the head of the Barcelona Node of the European Media and Immersion Laboratory, the only EU-funded center for eXtended Reality (XR). He is also member of the Innovation and Research network on Mental health and technology (Xarxa TECSAM).
We don't stop playing because we grow old,
we grow old because we stop playing.
Probably attributable to Joseph Lee, American philanthropist and social worker, considered founder of “the playground movement.“ (Chicago mid-1890s).
Other thoughts'n'quotes on interaction, technolcogy, media, embodiment... and other issues:
- “[play] is at the very centre of what makes us human.”
(*) Huizinga, J., “Homo Ludens: a study of the play element in culture”, in Salen, K & Zimmerman, E., “Rules of Play. Game design fundamentals”, MIT Press, Cambridge MA, 2004.
- [Physicists] found they needed imagery... a style of thinking based on a kind of seeing and feeling. That was what physical intuition meant.
Feynman said to Dyson, and Dyson agreed, that Einstein's great work had spring from physical intuition and that when Einstein stopped creating it was because "he stopped thinking in concrete physical images and became a manipulator of equations."
Intuition was not just visual but also auditory and kinesthetic. Those who watched Feynman in moments of intense concentration came away with a strong, even disturbing sense of the physicality of the process, as though his brain did not stop with gray matter but extended through every muscle in his body.
(*) James Gleick, Genius: The Life and Science of Richard Feynman, 1993.
- “As though Knowing could be any satisfaction to a man!"
(*) Griffin in H.G. Wells: The Invisible Man, 1897.
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