University of Oulu

Netta Iivari, Marianne Kinnula, Leena Kuure, and Tiina Keisanen. 2020. “Arseing around was Fun!” Humor as a Resource in Design and Making. In Proceedings of the 2020 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI ’20). Association for Computing Machinery, New York, NY, USA, 1-13. DOI:

“Arseing around was fun!” : humor as a resource in design and making

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Author: Iivari, Netta1; Kinnula, Marianne1; Kuure, Leena2;
Organizations: 1INTERACT Research Unit, University of Oulu, Finland
2Research Unit for Languages and Literature, University of Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 1.4 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Association for Computing Machinery, 2020
Publish Date: 2020-05-08


Humor is an inevitable part of human life. Most of us are capable of experiencing and appreciating humor. From this perspective, surprisingly little HCI research can be found scrutinizing the existence, role, and potential of humor in our design practice. The gap remains also related to children and teenagers; there is a lack of studies appreciating the emergence and existence of humor in the design process without intentionally evoking it. Thus, this study examines humor as a naturally occurring phenomenon in the design process. The study was conducted in collaboration with a class of teenagers and their teachers. The study identifies various forms and functions of humor in the design process and reveals its situated, emergent nature as a resource in interaction within design. The study proposes a practical tool for designers for anticipating and potentially facilitating the emergence, forms and usages of humor as an interactional resource in design.

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ISBN Print: 978-1-4503-6708-0
Pages: 1 - 13
Article number: 42
DOI: 10.1145/3313831.3376169
Host publication: CHI '20: Proceedings of the 2020 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems
Conference: ACM SIGCHI Annual Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems
Type of Publication: A4 Article in conference proceedings
Field of Science: 113 Computer and information sciences
6121 Languages
Funding: This study was funded by Academy of Finland (Grant #324685, Make-a-Difference project) and by European Union's Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation programme (Grant #787476, COMnPLAY SCIENCE project. This research is connected to the GenZ-project, a strategic profiling project in human sciences at the University of Oulu, supported by the Academy of Finland (Grant #318930) and the University of Oulu.
EU Grant Number: (787476) CoM_n_Play-Science - Learning science the fun and creative way: coding, making, and play as vehicles for informal science learning in the 21st century
Academy of Finland Grant Number: 324685
Detailed Information: 324685 (Academy of Finland Funding decision)
318930 (Academy of Finland Funding decision)
Copyright information: © 2020 Copyright is held by the owner/author(s). This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs International 4.0 License.