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Interaction with Affective Computers

Once we begin to explore applications for affective systems, interface design challenges and novel strategies for human-computer interaction immediately begin to suggest themselves. These design challenges concern both hardware and software. In terms of software, the human interface to applications can change with the increased sensitivity that the affective sensing/recognizing/understanding system will bring to the interaction. In terms of hardware, the design challenges present themselves even more immediately.
For example, various bio-sensors and other devices such as pressure sensors may be used as inputs to an affective computing system, perhaps by placing them into mice, keyboards, chairs, jewlery, or clothing, things a user is naturally in physical contact with. Sensing may also be done without contact, via cameras and microphones or other remote sensors. How will these sensors evolve into the user's daily life? Will sensors be embedded in the user's environment, or will they be part of one's personal belongings, perhaps part of a personal wearable computer system? In the latter case, how can we design these systems so that they are unobtrusive to the user and/or invisible to others? In either case, consideration for the user's privacy and other needs must be addressed.

A number of our research projects impact upon issues in interface design; these are listed below.

Research projects related to affective interfaces

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