The Games Institute presents the next of a series of "Brown Bag Seminars" on July 27th, 2017. The GI is located in EC-1, and these events are open to all members of the University of Waterloo.
Presenter: Dr. Timothy Robert Merritt
Current interfaces can be mismatched or inadequate if they do not support people in respect to physical and environmental factors. Mobile social games such as Pokemon Go force players to focus intently on the small screen of the mobile phone, which moves attention away from the richness of the social and physical space. When children undergo blood sampling at the hospital, doctors struggle to manage the fear and pain associated with the procedure, which is often compounded by anxious parents and scary medical equipment. In this talk I discuss two new interfaces we have developed that explore alternatives for these contexts with focus on how technology can position the body and stage rewarding social experiences.
The talk will focus mainly on two projects 1) development of “GlowPhones” a location-based mobile game platform using low-resolution displays to augment the physical space and move the attention away from the mobile screen and toward the environment and other co-players and 2) development of “ChillFish” a novel breath-based biofeedback game and bespoke airflow sensor for reducing pain and anxiety for children undergoing painful or stressful medical treatment in the hospital. Both of these systems involve new interfaces that explore the role of technology in encouraging preferred body positions and socio-spatial configurations. This perspective can enable rewarding social experiences in various contexts from increasing enjoyment in mobile social games to reducing pharmacological treatment in the hospital. ChillFish received an honorable mention at the DIS2017 conference and GlowPhones has been accepted to CHI-PLAY 2017 and will be presented publicly in October.
Date: April 19th, 2017
Time: 11:00am - 12:00pm
Where: The Games Institute, EC1, Room 1331
3:00 - 3:45pm – Speaker's Presentation
3:45pm - 4:00pm – Questions and Discussion
Biography of the Guest Speaker:
Timothy Merritt is an Associate Professor of Computer Science in the Research Center for Socio+Interactive Design at Aalborg University, Denmark and teaches interaction design courses in the Interaction Design MSc program. He holds a PhD from the National University of Singapore where his thesis explored how and why people respond differently to artificial and human teammates in cooperative games. His current research involves design and study of novel interfaces to support human activity. This includes 3 main areas of work, interactive technologies for social communication and play, tools for design and digital fabrication, and novel materials for shape-changing or living interfaces. This has led to dissemination in the form of large internal exhibitions and demonstrations of future product concepts including the world headquarters of Volkswagen AG and LEGO. Public dissemination includes HCI and interaction design conferences e.g. CHI, DIS, TEI and relevant journals e.g. Digital Creativity, Interacting with Computers among others. Prior to re-entering academic life, Tim worked for 12 years as project manager and senior enterprise management consultant at Siemens IT Solutions and Services designing and deploying monitoring solutions within large corporations such as MetLife, BestBuy and government institutions including the Dept. Of Energy. More information is available at www.ixd.net.
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