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A Floppy Disk highlights and emphasizes the invisible degradation to privacy via the move away from an intentional action of clicking save.

Photo of Kyle Conway
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Sketch 1 (1,500 characters)

This is about the pervasive saving that takes place unbeknownst to the users. To my mind this addresses the Surveillance opportunity area, though it could clearly relate to others as well. The inspiration was through watching a recording of the webinar. It was clear that despite the questions being asked there was no clear examples that anyone could point to, but the concept of the icons on desktops and in programs as a visual language inspired me to think about how the actual concept of "saving" has changed over time, to the point that saving files is all but non-existent in an online context (e.g. google docs auto-saving every keystroke and lacking this very iconic icon). I think building out this concept would require discussion and research on specifically what type of awareness campaign could exist and how best it would be shared. GDPR might be an easy EU target, including the concept of UnSave on the mandated pages describing what to do to opt-out of auto-collection. Similarly, knowing where this icon/button could be placed through a browser plugin might also be illuminating, especially in concert with a a plugin like privacy badger or the concept of https -- so that the conscious choice to "save" data to cloud providers would be more explicit and full knowledge than it is now. I'd like to further develop an iconized visual-design language with respect to different aspects of privacy that could be plainly indicating what category of thing you're opting to save.

Sketch 2 (1,500 characters)

This concept is an exploration of what happens when data is saved (i.e. it is accessed and exposed in unexpected ways by unexpected people). At the moment, this reads like an infographic, but I suspect this would ultimately be a video, animated gif, or sozi-like presentation ( to construct a brief narrative. Again, I think this represents many opportunities areas depending on particular focus, especially privacy and surveillance. The inspiration here is news stories people conflate“hacking” or “hacker” into something unrelated (e.g. noticing and reporting publicly accessible data to a company). Frustratingly, the company who perhaps left the data publicly accessible obfuscates their own errors by using the term. The infographic is stage #1 of a longer narrative focused on pulling the rug out from under the viewer later on by pointing out that the company/website who left the data accessible is the one who is also (perhaps most) at fault.

What have you learned through this sketching process? (1,000 characters)

It was interesting to think about the variations of places and spaces that the save button has disappeared silently. It was also illuminating to think about creating a visual-design language for types of privacy and security and "hacking" -- and how that might manifest on things like a webbrowser with data from privacy badger or adblockers. Mostly, I think I want to have access to cybersecurity professionals to pick their brains and get a better concept of what things they think are most misunderstood or troubling, and prioritize the visual communication from those starting points into a holistic design.

Tell us more about you. (1,000 characters)

Who are you is a question I can never fully answer. My name is Kyle R. Conway. I’m a multidisciplinary artist (PhD in fine arts) who for the past 8 or so years has been working for startups and (now) a non-profit doing everything from web design, marketing, designing and outlining pitch decks to writing python, teaching motivational interviewing, and setting up systems for data collection and analysis for internal reporting and grants. I have extensive background in theatre, narrative structure, and visual art as well as a long-time interest in the intersection of law and technology. I’ve been a linux-user by choice for the past decade, drawn in by the inherent sanity of the GPL and the ethical nature of Free/Libre software. I both love and am deeply suspicious of technology, and am interested in how we can use it to make our lives better instead of worse. I think it’s important to think about how best to communicate what is happening (or can happen) to non-technical people for bett

Why are you participating in this Challenge? (750 characters)

In short: it’s up my alley in terms of interest and skill set. I’ve been looking for a way to help with the shaping of policy and understanding and this seems like a great opportunity to do so. Misunderstanding technology could lead to disastrous policies and outcomes and I’d like to shoot for the best future we can have rather than the most soundbyte-think-of-the-chlidren version -- that comes from better narratives on our side.

Website(s) Dicewarebots:

What is your experience with the field of cybersecurity?

  • I have minimal experience and/or knowledge in the cybersecurity field.

What best describes you?

  • I’m a professional visual creator freelancer.

How did you hear about this OpenIDEO Challenge?

  • Other

Location: City

Des Moines

Location: State / District


Location: Country

  • United States of America


Join the conversation:

Photo of Dima Boulad

Welcome to the challenge Kyle Conway and thank you for your contribution! I like Tristan Spill 's builds on yoiur idea. I also do think the unsave icon is an interesting visual to start from. How would you consider pushing this idea further? We've had a large number of very interesting submissions so far and we are going through them one by one in the Review phase. In the meantime, we invite you to browse other submissions and join the conversation around cybersecurity on the platform!

Photo of Tristan Spill

Isn't "unsaving" simply forgetting or removing? I get where you're coming from ... pervasive saving and tracking. To me it reads like the language around this is slippery ... And I feel like the visuals don't yet show what you're explaining and that we're left with campaign stickers and slogans. Anyway, I like where this is going and hope to see it developed further. Good luck!

Photo of Kyle Conway

You're very much correct. I think the implementation would differ from the concept, though I think the mental framework around either re-implementing a save button (for conscious consent to share data) or un-auto-saving (for understanding how much is auto-saved) is useful―particularly because most people (particularly making policy) understand the visual icon, get what it does, and can easily model what its removal might mean for an auto-save by default world. I think it makes easier the conversation about, for instance, metadata, when you can talk about the timestamp of a file being akin to server call logs, etc.

But you're very much correct about the slippery slope here. I think my general thought was toward a branded campaign, but the implementation would be much more than that, and require some tightrope walking that you've identified.

I'm hoping to be able to be in some additional conversations with the cybersecurity professionals, because to me the greatest lack so far in this challenge has been a specificity of the goal or call (though I get that we're starting out broadly and narrowing from there).

Thanks very much for your comments!