this presentation went through 7 reasons why projects form artists and designers are important, especially for academic researchers and engineers:
"(1) avantgarde: as they can announce things to come (new practices, new artifacts)
(2) challenge existing practices (for example by highlight new interaction partners beyond the classical and canonical “human computer interaction”: blogjects, animal-controlled video games)
(3) criticize the state of the world by making explicit invisible/implicit phenomena or certain aspects that are hidden (like pollution mapped on cityscape)
(4) address issues in novel way that are not possible in academia or in private R&D: by using fakes, humor or non-utilitarian perspectices.
(5) “breaching experiment”: When trying to predict or design the future of technologies, you can’t just rely on what exist today… you want “disruptions” as the literature about innovation states. So technologies developed in new media art / device art contexts are often DISRUPTIVE platforms that allow to investigate what changes.
(6) arts+design do better to convey desire and emotions (and less mechanistic vision of humans who do not always want automation in their lives for example)
(7) the design process: something is investigated in the construction of hypothetical artifacts, the design process itself is important and bring lessons. A totally different approach than engineering and academic research."