Conference Paper

Delete by Haiku: Poetry from Old SMS Messages

Association for Computing Machinery (ACM),


DOI:10.1145/3027063.3049781, Dimensions: pub.1085190343,



  1. (1) Royal Institute of Technology, grid.5037.1
  2. (2) SICS, Stockholm, Sweden
  3. (3) IT University of Copenhagen, grid.32190.39, ITU







The work draws on repurposing practices to inform design for deletion and handling of digital waste -- a way of letting go -- in graceful and aesthetically appealing ways. Delete by Haiku is a mobile phone application that explores how deleting old text messages can become an enjoyable and creative practice by turning messages into haiku poetry. Through the application users interactively repurpose selected old text messages on their mobile phone into a haiku poem aided by a haiku-generating algorithm. By repeatedly pinching the selected messages they break apart into words that tumble down in a Tetris like manner. Gradually words are deleted until the remaining words find their position and form a haiku. The video presents a walkthrough of how to interact with the application to select messages in various ways, how to apply "themes" to gain some control over the generation process, and eventually share created poems with others through social media.

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