Tara O’Neil
designer    l    strategist    l    futurist

Education: BAA, MDes, SMARTlab PhD Candidate

Tara O’Neil is a designer, a strategist and a futurist, with more than twenty-five years of professional experience advising major industry on the impact of human behavior and the consumer experience. Developing innovative business models and environments Tara endeavoured to disrupt existing mental models and develop new ways of thinking, seeing and understanding. In addition to her professional practice, she took her Master’s in Strategic Foresight and Innovation from OCAD University in Toronto, Canada. By combining futures studies and innovation, Tara found a new set of tools available for exploration.

As a SMARTlab-IDRC PhD candidate, Tara is continuing her work in the domain of Disruptive Technologies applying this thinking to the area of rural reinvention by creating meaningful solutions for people at the elusive intersection between creativity and business.

 

Current Research

Science and art are both required to solve complex problems. This isn’t the right-brain and the left-brain meeting in the middle it’s the right-brain and the left-brain combining to create something new. We need to be all “all brained”.

Futures studies is a method of inquiry that utilizes both sides of the brain. Wicked problems are complex problems exacerbated by exponential growth.

Tara is researching how experiential futures can be used to help solve these problems by creating a place where creativity can be unleashed. By looking out 20, 30 50 or even 100 years we can see hidden opportunities and threats. We can imagine the possibilities of driving forces present today and we can prepare. To understand the future, we need to go there. Virtual reality provides an opportunity to travel to unexplored worlds delivering opportunities for people to immersive themselves, make choices and experience life. It is here that emerging knowledge surfaces.

Tara is researching how this knowledge can be released, captured and used to create radical innovation. This type of thinking pushes well beyond typical brainstorming where groups capture low hanging fruit but are unable to stretch their thinking and imaginations beyond what’s immediately visible. The need for “all brained” thinking is upon us. Tara hopes to contribute theory and methodologies to help more people tap into their ability to harness the “all brain” thinking we all possess.

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Submit abstracts for presentations or papers now til Monday 7 May for 3 new SPECIAL SESSIONS at the IEEE GEM Conference in Galway (15-17 August, 2017). SMARTlab experts will co-chair these sessions and select top papers for publication in our forthcoming peer-reviewed journals!

Papers and practical presentations of new tools including MOOCS, AR apps et al are invited. Each submission should identify the user group it serves, with a note of any sensory, physical, cognitive or learning issues to be addressed.

submit here: https://edas.info/newPaper.php?c=24016&track=91464

This special session will focus on emerging Brain & Affective computer interfaces for AR/VR and Immersive environments and applications within the scope of Games and Interactive media technologies.

submit here: https://edas.info/newPaper.php?c=24016&track=91546

  • This special session solicits research contributions focussed on exploring the uses of textiles, smart materials, and wearables to enhance haptic or tactile memory triggers and the application of these sensing & interface technologies in the context of games and interactive media systems.
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IDRCseminar

April Seminar – All Welcome! Join live or online via https://appear.in/smartlabwhip

 2:30-3:30 pm GMT Friday 20th April 2018,

SMARTlab Impact Lab @ University College Dublin (Ireland) Newstead Building B (@The Lightbulb Factory) Lecture Theatre, Room 80 Ground Floor

A Double Act not to be missed :

Cassandra Collins: Inclusive Design for Creativity

Cassandra is Creative Director in the Chief Technology Office, Microsoft

Digital, Services & Success, Redmond USA. Previously in London, Morocco and Tunis Cassandra worked closely with SMARTlab on the SafetyNET and WomenConnect projects and on design interaction for the World Summit Showcase Award.

&

Dr Dónal Fitzpatrick: “How Smart is my Screenreader?”- challenging the possible with interactive technology

Dónal is a Lecturer in the School of Computer Science at Dublin City
University.

His research activities fall generally into the field of Human Computer Interaction, with an emphasis on Universal Design. He is particularly interested in providing solutions to usability issues which ensure that user interfaces are accessible to all people.

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Smartlab researchers Colin Keogh and Ross Lawless, in partnership with Science Gallery International, visit AirAsia in Kuala Lumpur to deliver innovation training along with 3D Printing/VR/AR demonstrations to the staff in AirAsia’s innovation lab in their new RedQ headquarters.

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SMARTlab and partners at the IDRCs of Ireland and Canada, VR First, HTC Vive, the UN, and the World Economic Forum gather at DAVOS to agree roles and thematics for the INCLUDE Project and VR lab network and the Future of Education and Women’s Leadership, in conversation with the  HTC Vive VR/AR for Impact programme and SAP Network’s SHEInnovates Programme.

Inline images 1

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SMARTlab-IDRC is pleased to announce the award of Regional Development Funding to partner IMR in collaboration with SMARTab-IDRC and collaborators VR First, Microsoft, An Saol, Social Justice Repair Kit, Perrenial, Strive, VR Therapeutics et al.

Enterprise Ireland match funds will support the development of a cutting-edge VR/AR training lab at the IMR facility in Mullingar, and will fund crucial research into the uses of assistive tech and VR/AR and robotics to support digital skills training and jobs creation for People with Disabilities and ALL members of our rural communities.


Pictured at the launch event on Monday 11 December are: Barry Kennedy, CEO IMR; Julie Sinnamon, CEO Enterprise Ireland, Minister Heather Humphreys, Business, Enterprise and Innovation; Prof Lizbeth Goodman, Director SMARTlab-IDRC at UCD; Talha Kiraz, Public Relations Manager, VR First.


Pictured at the INCLUDE Project Stakeholder meeting at UCD Research on Wednesday 13 December are: Barry Kennedy, CEO IMR; Talha Kiiraz, Public Relations Manager Vr First, Prof Lizbeth Goodman, Director SMARTlab-IDRC at UCD; Mr John Barry, UCD DIrector of Strategic Partnerships, Rahel Demant, COO VR First, Dr Kevin Marshall, Education Lead Microsoft, Prof Denis Dowling, I-FORM PI, UCD MME.

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