Abstract

Increasingly, systems are being developed and used in ways that involve end of life issues such as death, dying, and bereavement. Yet design considerations and guidelines for technologists working in this sensitive area are not well-established. We therefore report on exploratory fieldwork consisting of focus groups, observations, and consultation with bereavement experts aimed at understanding how technology might be designed to support bereaved parents. From this fieldwork, we derive a set of considerations useful for researchers and designers developing systems that deal specifically with bereavement, and with the end of life more broadly. These considerations focus on interpersonal communication, new ways of being in the world, and materiality. We conclude with a distillation of these considerations into practical design guidelines for working in this area.