Wearables--smart watches, glasses, wristbands, and the like--are a growing segment of computing technology in everyday life. These devices by their nature impact in-person social interactions--they are meant to be used while on the go, and thus become intertwined with everyday social contexts and activities. As we introduce technology ever deeper into everyday social situations, it is important both to avoid degrading the quality of in-person social interaction, and ideally, to enhance it.
In the Social Wearables project, we systematically tackle the question of best supporting collocated social interaction using wearables, by developing and field testing novel technological prototypes in varied application domains, from games to office activities.
Partners and Collaborators
- Márquez Segura, E., Isbister, K., Back, J., and Waern, A. 2017. Design, appropriation, and use of technology in larps. In Proceedings of the 12th International Conference on the Foundations of Digital Games (FDG '17). ACM, New York, NY, USA, Article 53, 4 pages. doi: 10.1145/3102071.3106360
- Márquez Segura, E., Pettit, J., Fey, J., Melcer, E., Jhaveri, S.N., and Isbister, K. 2017. SceneSampler. Selected game of IndieCade 2017.
Making sense of Human-Food Interaction
Activity in Human-Food Interaction (HFI) research is skyrocketing across a broad range of disciplinary interests and concerns. The dynamic and heterogeneous nature of this emerging field presents a challenge to scholars wishing to critically engage with prior work, identify gaps and ensure impact. It also challenges the formation of community. In this project, we conducted a Systematic Mapping Study of HFI research to make sense of the field. We also developed the HFI Lit Review app, an online data visualisation tool developed to allow researchers to engage in new ways with the HFI literature, propose modifications and additions to the review, and thereby actively engage in community-making.
Partners and Collaborators
- Altarriba Bertran, F., Jhaveri, S., Lutz, R., Isbister, K., and Wilde, D. 2018. Visualising the Landscape of Human-Food Interaction Research. In Proceedings of the 2018 ACM Conference Companion Publication on Designing Interactive Systems (DIS '18 Companion). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 243-248. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1145/3197391.3205443
Playing with Food
Socialisation, eating and play are core activities that make us human. While they are often brought together, play theory suggests that their combination has unexplored potential in the context of gastronomy. Our research also indicates that a chef’s desire to control the meal may be a key impediment to developing dining experiences in which the diner’s playful engagement impacts taste, texture and flavour combination. In this project, we investigate if combining participatory Research through Design and play theory might better situate chefs to diversify their approach to playful gastronomy.
Partners and Collaborators
- Altarriba Bertran, F. and Wilde, D. 2017. Playing with Food: reconfiguring the gastronomic experience through play. In Carrilho Bonacho, R. M, Pinheiro de Sousa, A., Viegas, C., Martins, J.P., Pires, M.J. and Sara Velez Estêvão (ed.s) Experiencing Food: Designing Dialogues. CRC Press.
Physically Embodied Educational Games
The Physically Embodied Educational Games project examines how can we effectively design physical embodiment and interaction into educational applications. Recent work on educational systems has shown the benefits of incorporating physicality, motion, and embodiment into designs. E.g., providing improved spatial recall and mental manipulation, increased engagement, greater positive feelings towards learning content, and enhanced collaboration. However, some studies have faced notable difficulty when attempting to utilize embodiment in their designs for improved learning outcomes due to weak mappings between physical action, embodied cognition, and learning concepts. To address these issues, we have created a design framework and physically embodied games to systematically examine how common physical design approaches (such as tangibles and augmented reality) may differ in learning outcomes and related educational factors.
- Melcer, E. and Isbister, K. 2016. Bridging the Physical Learning Divides: A Design Framework for Embodied Learning Games and Simulations. Proceedings of DiGRA/FDG 2016.
- Melcer, E. and Isbister, K. 2016. Bridging the Physical Divide: A Design Framework for Embodied Learning Games and Simulations. In Proceedings of the 2016 CHI Conference Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI EA '16). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 2225-2233. doi: 10.1145/2851581.2892455
- Moving to Learn: Exploring the Impact of Physical Embodiment in Educational Programming Games
All the Feels
The spectator experience has been researched in the context of public spaces, stadiums, and other venues. Technological advances have led to the rise of streaming platforms such as Twitch and YouTube in recent years. Additionally, we have had advances in the realm of game input, where there has been research enhancing the player experience through use of biometric feedback. However, no one has investigated the impact of the players’ biometric feedback on the spectator experience.
To investigate this, we are designing a tool called ‘All the Feels’, the purpose of which to incorporate biometric data into online gameplay streams. The tool displays heart rate and GSR (galvanic skin response) information to stream spectators, taken from the player in real-time, through the use of a commercially available wearable device. The tool also provides emotion labeling information input from existing auto-detection software that uses the player’s webcam. Notable results from a preliminary study show that the tool generated a greater spectator empathetic response in women rather than men. Since females make up only 20% of the Twitch user base, this indicates a potential lost market share that could be expanded.
Check out this research featured in New Scientist Magazine!
Want to participate in a study? Check out this page!
Raquel Robinson, Katherine Isbister, and Zachary Rubin. 2016. All the Feels: Introducing Biometric Data to Online Gameplay Streams. In Proceedings of the 2016 Annual Symposium on Computer-Human Interaction in Play Companion Extended Abstracts (CHI PLAY Companion '16). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 261-267. DOI: https://doi-org.oca.ucsc.edu/10.1145/2968120.2987732
Raquel Robinson, Zachary Rubin, Elena Márquez Segura, and Katherine Isbister. 2017. All the feels: designing a tool that reveals streamers' biometrics to spectators. In Proceedings of the 12th International Conference on the Foundations of Digital Games (FDG '17). ACM, New York, NY, USA, Article 36, 6 pages. DOI: https://doi-org.oca.ucsc.edu/10.1145/3102071.3102103
Affective Dimensions of Shape
In HCI, research linking dimensions of shape to phenomena such as emotion is fairly limited. Certain visual dimensions of form have been shown to express a wide range of emotions, but there is no unified understanding of which dimensions relate to which emotions. To address this gap, in the Affective Dimensions of Shape project we explore the relationship between shape and emotion, providing a taxonomy of affective shape dimensions and insight to how individuals embody emotion in form.
- Melcer, E. and Isbister, K. 2016. Motion, Emotion, and Form: Exploring Affective Dimensions of Shape. In Proceedings of the 2016 CHI Conference Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI EA '16). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 1430-1437. doi: 10.1145/2851581.2892361
- Melcer, E. and Isbister, K. 2014. Emotional space: understanding affective spatial dimensions of constructed embodied shapes. In Proceedings of the 2nd ACM symposium on Spatial user interaction (SUI '14). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 143-143. doi: 10.1145/2659766.2661208
- Melcer, E. 2014. CSEI: The Constructive Sensual Evaluation Instrument. Workshop position paper at CHI 2014 Workshop on Tactile User Experience Evaluation Methods and study results. Available here