Made by Mikey Chen Nga Nguyen Steve Hamilton


One-2-One is a matched pair of hand crafted wooden communication devices that evoke presence and facilitate meaningful engagement.  One-2-One addresses the way we perform communication by prescribing behavior that encourages focus and appreciation.  The system encourages these behaviors by reducing functionality to the barest of essence, retraining the technologically overstimulated mind to focus solely upon the message literally in hand.

While digital communication has granted affordances in reach and scope, we have taken for granted the significance of genuine conversation and sharing. How can technology mediate and enable exchanges in a more conscious way? The design decisions were informed by our core values in how to preserve and bring about more meaningful communication.

Design Values:

Selectivity - The choice to communicate should be conscious, direct, and valued.

Humanism - Communication should embrace the power of ritual engagement behaviors and celebrate the need for trusting and shared connections between individuals.

Dedication to Craft  - The finely crafted wood cases instill a sense of value in the communicative act that is lost when communication is ubiquitous, free, and instantaneous.

The entire interface consists of only two lighted buttons.  One button activates recording while the other button activates playback after beckoning the receiver with a breathing pulse of calming blue light. The system erases each message after it’s been played encouraging the recipient to savor and pay close attention to it.  After a message is viewed the sender’s own record light begins to breathe providing closure to the established communication loop. By allowing a partner to respond only after receiving a message, One-2-One promotes dialog rather than serial one-way communication.  Each message is limited to one minute, challenging the sender to think carefully about what they would like to share.