The ACM SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, commonly called CHI, is the biggest in our field and always a good time. In 2012, we were thrilled to get a paper on Steampunk accepted, and even nominated for Best Paper. Josh and Ron traveled to Austin to present the paper, and although the pictures below are low quality, you can just make out Josh dressed in Steampunk garb.
Tanenbaum, J., Tanenbaum, K., & Wakkary, R. (2012). Steampunk as Design Fiction. Paper presented at CHI 2012, Austin, TX, USA. Available via the ACM Digital Library
Abstract: In this paper we look at the Steampunk movement and consider is relevance as a design strategy for HCI and interaction design. Based on a study of online practices of Steampunk, we consider how, as a design fiction, Steampunk provides an explicit model for how to physically realize an ideological and imagined world through design practice. We contend that the practices of DIY and appropriation that are evident in Steampunk design provide a useful set of design strategies and implications for HCI.