Research

Classifying Sensitive Issues for Patients with Neurodevelopmental Disorders

ADHD has an estimated worldwide prevalence of 2-3 % and is one of the most frequent neurodevelopmental disorders. Many problems in an ADHD-patient’s life arise from the lack of self-management abilities and social interaction with others. While medication is considered the most successful treatment for disorders such as ADHD, patients often seek support in therapeutic sessions with trained therapists. These aim to strengthen self-awareness of symptoms, emotional self-regulation and self-management. However, sharing personal insights can be a burden for patients while therapists would benefit from understanding important issues a patient is facing. Our work aims to support therapy for patients and therapists by providing classifiction of digital diary entries for therapy sessions, while protecting patients privacy. Additionally we provide insights into important issues and topics including their affective interpretation for patients suffering from ADHD.

impressions from the prototype and study with children
Comparing Shape-changing and Vibrotactile Steering Wheels for Take-over Requests in Highly Automated Driving

Automation shortcomings in highly automated driving (level 3) might require the driver to take over vehicle control. When the vehicle issues a take-over request (TOR), the driver has to immediately comprehend the situation, which highly demands visual attention. Therefore, haptic channel has the potential to be used for conveying information about driving context at take-over to assist decision making. In this work, we introduce the concept and prototype design of a shape-changing steering wheel which conveys contextual information at take-over. We evaluated this concept in comparison with an identical wheel with vibration cues. Results showed that haptic cues on steering wheel at TOR reassure drivers of their decisions rather than assisting them in decision making, and overall workload ratings are decreased using vibration cues. To assist decision making, contextual haptic cues in level 3 should be located on-body or on drivers’ seat.

impressions from the prototype and study with children
Face2Emoji: Using Facial Emotional Expressions to Filter Emojis

One way to indicate nonverbal cues is by sending emoji (e.g.,😹), which requires users to make a selection from large lists. Given the growing number of emojis, this can incur user frustration, and instead we propose Face2Emoji, where we use a user’s facial emotional expression to filter out the relevant set of emoji by emotion category. To validate our method, we crowdsourced 15,155 emoji to emotion labels across 308 website visitors, and found that our 202 tested emojis can indeed be classified into seven basic (including Neutral) emotion categories. To recognize facial emotional expressions, we use deep convolutional neural networks, where early experiments show an overall accuracy of 65% on the FER-2013 dataset. We discuss our future research on Face2Emoji, addressing how to improve our model performance, what type of usability test to run with users, and what measures best capture the usefulness and playfulness of our system.

impressions from the prototype and study with children
Towards a Tangible Storytelling Kit for Exploring Emotions with Children

A key aspect of children’s development is the ability to manage personal feelings, understand others’ feelings and needs, and interact positively with others. Storytelling is one approach to help children develop emotional literacy and deal with their own feelings constructively. To facilitate and complement this process, we developed an interactive storytelling prototype to help children and parents explore emotional situations. Specifically, the tangible modular toolkit, enables the re-creation of different narratives using a multimodal user interface. We evaluated the preliminary prototype with parents and children to get feedback on the design and to help us better understand the design space. Our findings revealed how children engaged with tangible storytelling, how they explored emotional states in narratives, and what challenges they faced. We also explored the routines and practices parents used and the issues they faced while helping their children express emotions more easily.

input methods
Comparison of in-situ mood input methods on mobile devices

The exchange of daily moods is an important part of interpersonal communication over a distance. Mobile devices offer a platform for sharing on the go, and keeping in touch regularly. However, it is still a challenge to design an input for mood, such that the sharing easily integrates into the daily life and is engaging for a longer time. To design an input, which overcomes these challenges, we explore the use of four different methods for expressing mood on mobile devices, drawn from previous work in psychology. We aim to verify the usefulness of these methods and want to investigate this by conducting a comparative study of these four input methods, regarding the following factors: intuitiveness, inconvenience, speed of input, everyday use, expressiveness and overall suitability. Results show that use of photographs and emotion terms are suitable to describe the many facets of moods for most participants. Most of the participants prefer personalized input methods as well as combined methods.

storybox prototyp
Supporting Communication between Grandparents and Grandchildren through Tangible Storytelling Systems

Grandparents and grandchildren that live apart often rely on communication technologies, such as messengers, video conferencing, and phone calls for maintaining relationships. While some of these systems are challenging for grandparents, others are less engaging for children. To facilitate communication, we developed StoryBox, a tangible device that allows sharing photos, tangible artifacts, and audio recordings of everyday life. We conducted a preliminary study with two families to identify design issues, and further refine the prototype. Subsequently, we conducted a field study with four families for up to four weeks to better understand real-world use and examine inter-generational connectedness. We found that StoryBox was accessible, simple, and helped bridge the technological gap between grandparents and grandchildren. Children communicated asynchronously in a playful and idiosyncratic manner, and grandparents shared past family memories. We provide insights on how to ease communication between different generations, engage them in sharing activities, and strengthen family relationships.

Forget-Me-Not prototyp
Exploring Social Awareness: A Design Case Study in Minimal Communication

Computer-mediated communication technology is ubiquitous in todays society. However, the design of these technologies often takes a screen-based approach and requires users to adopt new usage conventions. While these methods have been widely successful in helping individuals communicate, we take a step back in this paper and explore the design implications of a simpler tangible system for keeping in touch. This system consists of a pair of artificial electronic flowers, which connect and transmit information to each other. Our contribution is not in the actual implementation, but rather in the design implications that follow. In our modest evaluation we found participants using our system in informal, relaxed and sometimes novel ways.

remotable_combined
RemoTable: Sharing daily activities and moods using smart furniture

Social Interaction and the feeling of emotional closeness to beloved ones is mainly driven by the communication with each other. For patients suffering from a serious disease due to intense mood changes, it is difficult to keep regular contact with relatives. This affects the need for direct and verbal communication with relatives. To continue the participation in each others lives, we have developed a concept to share daily activities, current moods and presence information using a smart livingroom table. A first lab study with a prototype showed promising results with regard to expressiveness, joy of use and usability.

SocialWall: Photo-based Participation in the Life of Loved Ones

Social interaction is an importand factor to our quality of life and well being. Interacting with friends and family members, exchanging experiences is important to everyone. In co-located groups and families, spontaneous communication occurs day-to-day, and therefore allows the continuous exchange of news and experiences within the family. However, for family members that are living remotely from their loved ones, the exchange of experiences and the participation in family events is not as easy as for co-located persons. The use of synchronous verbal communication via the phone or video chats, enables people to participate in the life of loved ones, but requires simultaneous presence. To support an asynchronous exchange of events and experiences within the family we want to investigate the use of a photo-based diary to support an ongoing exchange of experiences as well as an easy and continuous way to reflect on them.

WorkStar: Involving young adults to design a serious game for working life integration

The serious game ”WorkStar” aims at the problem of integrating young people into the working life by motivating them to gather information about interesting job fields and to get in contact with possible future employers. The game encourages the player to collect these information in the real world and therefore to extend his in-game character.

The game is currently in evaluation with young adults who are up to entering the working life in the near future. The prototype of the game and the project itself got a lot of media coverage (german only) e.g. [Here], [Here] and [Here]