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DIS Studio 5, Fall 2017
Final Project
Ron Eglash

Lead Designers
Luke Bateman
Damiel Faxon

Final Presentation

Functional Prototype


The Sanctuary for Independent Media

The Sanctuary for Independent Media (SIM) is a telecommunications production facility dedicated to community media arts. The Sanctuary hosts screening, production and performance facilities, training in media production and a meeting space for artists, activists and independent media makers of all kinds. The Sanctuary operates several distinct initiatives in its mission to build a more just world using art, media, and creativity as tools.

Design Challenge

Contemporary social science students working in studio courses are often challenged to create projects in conjunction with local organizations. In theory, this is great and at first could be misunderstood as free labor. Upon taking a closer look and learning from the SIM’s experiences, we realized that this was not the case.

Many students will start work on a service oriented project and generate enthusiastic ideas that energize their community partners. However, more often than not, they overpraise, under-deliver, and step back from the projects development, leaving the community stakeholders hanging. According to our community partner, Branda Miller, this actually steals time and energy from the organization involved and can leave more work for them when students leave behind left over project materials.

Our challenge was to create a design solution than helped sustain student and volunteer initiatives longer than their time in residency.

Proposed Solution

Our team proposed the development of a software platform designed to help document and host student projects through an open-source, platform cooperative. The software would be developed to help students connect with local organizations, learn about volunteer opportunities, and start and sustain local initiatives.

The infinish.ed provides access to project and related contact information for students and community members, so that they can connect and give projects a second life. This website helps local initiatives and projects in and around campus develop longer than any one developers time working on the projec

The long term vision of our project is to create a multi sided collaboration software that fundamentally transforms the interactions between student, faculty, professional staff, administration, and the local community in order to create a more generative and sustainable ecosystem in and around higher education.

Final Outcome

In the 7 weeks our team had to develop this project, we created a functional prototype that enables students to upload projects to an online repository and view old projects uploaded by other students.

The platform was title infinish.ed to signify its connection to education, as well as the idea of infinitely sustaining local initiatives.

Unfortunately, like many of the projects before us, we underestimated the technical depth of our proposed project, and were unable to fully deliver on our promises to the SIM.

It took all the time we to develop the project just to create the backend code that would enable users to upload and view projects. This resulted in us being unable to devote development time to creating a specific organizational page for the SIM. However, the MVP that we developed is structured in a way that will enable us to continue adding to its functions and we intend to continue developing that project throughout the winter and next semester.