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Hironao Kato

New York, NY, United States

Member since September 08, 2008

  • Mission statement



    Mission statement of this thesis project is how we can solve problems between care workers, patient and their families, and (or) how we can support their relationship to be better with product design, and this project is about to solve more deep matter of human’s mentality and how we can approach the core issue they have in design direction.

    The question is, could “A good life” for the people who need nursing care be consisted without good relationship with their partner? Moreover, there is another relative that the value of nursing care for their family, they also care about it.

    The focal point of this project is not about the product support physical issues such as physical disability directly, but the point is mental issue and its relatives between them. The fundamental part of this project is the mentality of them, however, if there would come up the relation with physical matter through the research, I definitely approach it.

  • Digital Jernal from New York Times

    : "For 20 years, she had cared for clients in their homes, bathing them, cooking for them, helping them dress and take their medications. But now, suffering from kidney failure, she is too ill to work." Now, what happened to her?

    Web-news from PHI quality care through quality job: National Healthcare Workers’ Campaign Reports on America’s Most Dangerous Job: Caring for the Greatest Generation

    :"Report Shows High Rates of Injury, Inadequate Health Coverage May Result in Caregiver Shortage"

    Report from National Survey on Drug Use and Health:

    :This is discribing how many people are working as care worker in which situation

  • The theme of my thesis is about nursing care, especially issues between caretaker and people who need nursing care.

    Objective of this thesis project is how we can solve problems between caretakers, patient and their families, and (or) how we can support their relationship to be better with product design. Product design sounds just a thing which works physically, and someone thinks just about aesthetic and physical functions. However, this project is about to solve more deep matter of human’s mentality and how we can approach the core issue they have in design direction.

    The background story of this thesis comes from a friend who is working in the nursing care facility. Now he is afflicted with mental problem because he is gradually influenced by the situation of his work which involves communication problem with his patients and possibly their family. However, this is not only about the mental health of caretakers and their motivation, but also potentially the cause of worse quality of care for people who need nursing care.

    The criterion of “A good life” for people depends on individual. But the question is, could “A good life” for the people who need nursing care be consisted without good relationship with their partner? Moreover, there is another relative that the value of nursing care for their family.

    What is the real situation; the theme of this thesis project cannot be achieved by only desktop working. Therefore, I would like to research the real situa...

  • Design criteria


    Form: the form of my project needs to be very clear to understand but also be suited in daily life. Compared to the affordance of ordinary people and the affordance of the targets, probably the situation of my target is a little bit more limited than other people.

    Size: the size, in other words scale in my project is important and it should be in the category of personal area, which is not only one person, but also two or small number of people. The problem in between caretakers and patients is not only one or specific couple, this can be said many of them. However, the focal point is not about such a whole system of nursing care, because the problem which should be solved is about such a small area between partners.

    Function: the function in my project does not mean my design changes their life. The design should be support or giving a bridge to sustain their communication. Communication: the communication is my main theme for now and this is a fundamental function of my design. Many designers who I respect noted that the form follows its function, and there must be direct connection between function and communication with their affordance.

    Cost: the question is what the cost and value is for caretaker and patient. This is related to affordance. In reality, their family care about the cost which they have to pay for nursing care and its returned value to the patient and his or her family. From the sight of patient’s vision, their value is more about their life, in other ...

  • Summry_177_

    Looking at images in my posting “part People 2/2”, stores including school buildings are public or physical spaces at this point, but those physical spaces transform people to personal space makers, in other words, various size of social space(s) (image above and previous posting)

    In reality, there are problem in the street. As I wrote about the facts of taxies and pedestrians who cross street freely, sometimes (or very often) they become a cause of traffic accidents. If everyone is under the social rule, accident does not happen. This is not only about traffic accident, but also people make personal spaces on the street and block to other pedestrians walk.

    The reason of this situation is hierarchies in people's mind. Basically pedestrians are walking with their intentions, but they are also incoherent at this time whether their intentions are free or decided. However, once they achive their objective(s), they make personal spaces in physically and socially. (like images in previous posting)

    Concretely, studying in school is the first objective for students, but after school, they immediately go out and make small groups to chat, take a nap, or eat around the building. And at this point, they are released from the first objective, and shifted to their choice.

  • Pedestrian_132_

    Pedestrians can also be separated by “a trigger” in the street. On the street, there are not only buildings but also many attractives around there such as Deli, café, and other stores. Pedestrians are no different from other people, and they are also attracted by these stores. Someone is walking with hungry stomach and picks some foods on the street, this is a daily scene in the street, and the task of those stores is recharging their obsession quickly and release to the street again. (upper image)

    Also, these stores make pedestrians change themselves to people who create personal space on walkway, because they want to stay around there to eat. (bottom image) In this case, these stores are acting as re-charger and also transformer at the same time.

  • Hiro_pedestrian1_177_

    Focusing on people side, there are also two kinds of area in the street, pedestrian and people who belong this area. Pedestrians are similar to cars on the road and they make a stream on the walkway. (image blue part)

    On the other hands, there are other people around the area such as worker of building construction, students, business officers, and people who live around there. Those people sometimes create small invisible area when they have a lunch in a small group, for example, a worker of building construction buy a lunch box and eat with co-workers together on the walkway, and they create small personal space. (image upper right) There are also students chatting at the corner, business man talking with cellphone, and people walking around with dogs. (image bottom area) The walkway does not have such a strict rule compared to the road, so people on the walkway create personal area(s) and stream line(s) freely.

    At this point, people who create personal area are also observers while they are doing something on the walk way. For example, some workers were watching me (us) and they might be thinking that what we are eating lunch at that time.

  • Truck_177_

    There is another vehicle in the street, truck. They are shipping something to somewhere, and stop on the street. In this case, people think trucks and cars parking on the street as a part of environment of the street, like a tree.

    Compared to where cars driving on the road and where cars parking on the road, cars driving make an impenetrable area (image upper left side), but this stream line (area) suddenly disappears while cars parking.

    At this point, people are acrossing 13th street freely becasue they only care the center area of the road rather than the side of the road. (image blue area) This situation can be said in whole traffic of NYC; pedestrian does not care where they across a street, they just care if there is car passing.

  • Streamline_132_

    Invisible area in the street

    My observation at the corner of 13th street and 5th avenue identifies several sections.

    First of all, street is basically separated road and walk ways, this is a common sense and known by everyone and which makes strong rule that people have to walk on the walk way and cars have to be on the road.

    Focusing on the corner, cars make a stream line by driving down along 5th avenue, but some cars turn the corner and this makes another stream line. At this point, these seem one huge area in the street by cars (blue area of image above).

    However, there is other area on the road, taxies. The task of a taxi is picking customer(s) up and going to their destinations. Because they always stop suddenly on the side of road to pick someone, other cars have to care driving. Therefore, taxies are individual or stand alone line on the road, and they make small area suddenly, and disappear in a few seconds. (bottom part of image above)

  • Hironao_k__between_you_and

    The core point of my thesis is about relationship between care takers and patients, in other words, communication. In general meaning of “communication” is diverse of ways and ideas to communicate to others, but communication is not only about that, also communication has more potential to grow relationship one and others. This is extremely difficult to design just something about communication, because “design for communication” is too vague, nobody can control it.

    Therefore, this direction needs to be more specific and precisely. From the objective view, I already have clear target of my thesis and design research, and I will know the situation in reality of their field. And also, exploring diverse of vision of existing product is important. Except five example of product that I posted before, I also keep going to search other possibilities that include relatives and non-relatives for my thesis.

    The imageabove is incompleted criteria mapping of whole relatives of my target. All words are related their daily tasks and potential products.

    Below my editable mapping

    Hironao's whole relative mapping in process

    Please check...

My Interests

  • Industrial Design
  • Environmental Design
  • Communication Design
  • Fashion Design
  • Audio/Visual Design