— A speculative design toolkit and a futures game

Exploring how the world could be through imagination and the prototyping of possible futures help us rethink the present, ask ourselves new questions, and inspire different actions.

Speculative design is a framework that allows us to imagine how reality could be. It does not aim to predict concrete futures so that we arrive to them. 

Instead, it prompts us to ask ‘What if?’, and raises scenarios from which to obtain hints of our present in order to manifest tools for change and adaptation.

The potential of the speculative goes beyond finding answers or solving problems– imagining futures helps us investigate other paths. Traveling into the future informs our decisions today.

PALINDROME is a speculative design toolkit and a futures game as one

It received this name because it can be used in two ways: as a toolkit, designers and educators can facilitate speculative design sessions to build scenarios and speculative objects–artifacts following a method and tools of our making. As a game, the general public immerses in an experience to explore futures design– starting with artifacts created by toolkit users, players dive into other worlds through quests and meaningful gameplay experiences both online and physically, until arriving to the making of new stories about the futures where those artifacts live.

An additional dynamic connects toolkit users with game players: artifacts created by users are the starting point for players; stories created by players can be the starting point of designers, educators, and users. A library of artifacts and stories is revealed – and updated – every time Palindrome is used by a new group.

Palindrome is a project by The Time Travel Agency x Tipi, sibling studios from the north and south of Europe applying their complementary approaches to create speculative methodologies and futures design research.