Making infrastructure visible: a case study of home networking

TitleMaking infrastructure visible: a case study of home networking
Publication TypeMiscellaneous
Year of Publication2011
AuthorsChetty M
KeywordsHome computer networks, home networking, Human computer interaction, Human-computer interaction, infrastructure, Inspectability, Local area networks (Computer networks), visibility

In this dissertation, I examine how making infrastructure visible affects users' engagement with that infrastructure, through the case study of home networking. I present empirical evidence of the visibility issues that home networks present to users and how these results informed the design of a prototype called Kermit to visualize aspects of the home network. Through my implementation and evaluation of Kermit, I derive implications for making infrastructure visible in ways that enable end-users to manage and understand the systems they use everyday. I conclude with suggestions for future work for making home networks, and infrastructure more generally, more visible.