Exploring Capturing Approaches in Shared Fabrication Workshops: Current Practice and Opportunities

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Capturing content of fabrication activities is the first step for producing knowledge resources and an integral part of maker culture. As a secondary task, it conflicts though with the fabrication activity, and thus it is often forgotten and knowledge resources end up incomplete. In this article, we investigate different dimensions of content capture for knowledge resources in fabrication workshops. Based on past work in this area, we first propose a framework through which we identify two research directions to investigate. From these, we derive three dimensions to explore in more depth: The number of capturing devices, their feature variety and the degree of automation of each feature. We then explore the design space resulting from these three dimensions with the help of a design concept and an online survey study (N=66). Results show (1) a variety of needs and preferences justifying feature variety and multiplicity, (2) challenges in defining the right degree of manual and automatic control, and (3) the socio-technical impact of cameras in a shared space regarding privacy and ethics. We conclude with discussions on the benefits and vulnerabilities of equipping fabrication workshop with distributed camera-based capturing devices and offer opportunities for design