Now showing 1 - 10 of 24
  • Publication
    Personal Investigator: a Therapeutic 3D Game for Teenagers
    (SIGCHI, 2004-04-29) ;
    This position paper describes the implementation and initial findings of a game called Personal Investigator (PI). PI is an online 3D detective game that implements a model of Brief Solution Focused Therapy (BSFT). It aims to help teenagers overcome mental health problems and engage with traditional mental health care services. It is predicted that the combination of goal-oriented gaming with a model of goal-oriented therapy will help to attract and sustain the interest of teenagers, a group that therapists often have difficulty engaging with. PI is the first game to integrate this established psychotherapy approach into an engaging online 3D game.
  • Publication
    Using Emotional Attachment as a Lens to Improve Users E-reading Experience
    (International Journal of Interaction Design and Architecture, 2017) ; ; ;
    This paper explores ways to improve e-reading by examining theexperience of people who have developed a sense of attachment to their ereaders.Nine participants who reported experiencing emotional attachmentcompleted a semi-structured interview asking them about their experiences withe-readers and e-reading. Thematic analysis led to three main themes beingidentified as important to their experiences: projection of identity, control overthe device, and environmental factors. We examine how these themes suggestthat peoples experiences of reading in traditional and electronic formats areheavily interlinked. We also discuss how these themes resonate with the widerattachment literature. Based on our findings we suggest the need to support theexpression of identity through configuration and display in the e-readerexperience, as well as exploring ways devices can be used to control andpersonalize the reading environment.
  • Publication
    Pesky gNATs: Using Games to Support Mental Health Interventions for Adolescents
    This position paper gives a brief overview of a long- term and ongoing series of projects focused on the design and evaluation of computer games that can support mental health interventions with young adolescents. The work has its origins in a HCI project, but has evolved into a long-term interdisciplinary collaboration involving game designers, computer scientists and clinical psychologists, amongst others. It has resulted in a series of computer games and mobile apps that support a range of interventions including Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) for depression and anxiety, mindfulness-based CBT, an extended intervention CBT for adolescents experiencing trauma, and a CBT intervention for adults with intellectual disabilities. The games and mobile apps have been widely distributed and have been evaluated through randomised controlled trials in clinical settings. Here we briefly describe each game; the overall design process, motivation, and theoretical background; the results of key evaluations; some of our core lessons.
  • Publication
    Liveness Through the Lens of Agency and Causality
    Liveness is a well-known problem with Digital Musical Instruments (DMIs). When used in performances, DMIs provide less visual information than acoustic instruments, preventing the audience from understanding how the musicians influence the music. In this paper, we look at this issue through the lens of causality. More specifically, we investigate the attribution of causality by an external observer to a performer, relying on the theory of apparent mental causation. We suggest that the perceived causality between a performer’s gestures and the musical result is central to liveness. We present a framework for assessing attributed causality and agency to a performer, based on a psychological theory which suggests three criteria for inferred causality. These criteria then provide the basis of an experimental study investigating the effect of visual augmentations on audience’s inferred causality. The results provide insights on how the visual component of performances with DMIs impacts the audience’s causal inferences about the performer. In particular we show that visual augmentations help highlight the influence of the musician when parts of the music are automated, and help clarify complex mappings between gestures and sounds. Finally we discuss the potential wider implications for assessing liveness in the design of new musical interfaces.
  • Publication
    User Experience of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Apps for Depression: An Analysis of App Functionality and User Reviews
    Background: Hundreds of mental health apps are available to the general public. With increasing pressures on healthcare systems. they offer a potential way for people to support their mental health and well-being. However, while many are highly rated by users, few are evidence-based. Equally, our understanding of what makes apps engaging and valuable to users is limited. Objective: The aim of this paper was to analyse functionality and user opinions of mobile applications (apps) purporting to support Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) for depression and to explore key factors that have impact on user experience and support engagement. Methods: We systematically identified apps described as being based on CBT for depression. We then conducted two studies. In the first, we analysed the therapeutic functionality of apps. This corroborated existing work on apps’ fidelity to CBT theory, but we also extended prior work by examining features designed to support user engagement. Engagement features found in CBT apps for depression were compared with those found in a larger group of apps that support mental well-being in a more general sense. Our second study involved a more detailed examination of user experience, through a thematic analysis of publicly available user reviews of CBT apps for depression. Results: We identified 31 apps that purport to be based on CBT for depression. Functionality analysis (Study 1) showed that they offered an eclectic mix of features, including many not based on CBT practice. CBT apps used less varied engagement features compared to 253 other mental well-being apps. The analysis of 1,287 user reviews of CBT apps for depression (Study 2) showed that apps are used in a wide range of contexts, both replacing and augmenting therapy, and allowing users to take active role in supporting their mental health and well-being. Users, including health professionals, valued and used apps that incorporated both core CBT and non-CBT elements, but concerns were also expressed regarding the unsupervised use of apps. Positivity was seen as important to engagement, e.g. in the context of automatic thoughts, users express a preference to capture not just negative, but also positive ones. Privacy, security and trust were crucial to the user experience. Conclusions: CBT apps for depression need to do a better job of incorporating evidence-based CBT elements. Equally, a positive user experience is dependent on other design factors, including consideration of varying contexts of use. App designers should be able to clearly identify the therapeutic basis of their apps, but they should also draw on evidence-based strategies to support a positive and engaging user experience. The most effective apps are likely to strike a balance between evidence-based CBT strategies and evidence-based design strategies, including the possibility of eclectic therapeutic techniques.
      469Scopus© Citations 94
  • Publication
    Personalized, Health-Aware Recipe Recommendation: An Ensemble Topic Modeling Based Approach
    Food choices are personal and complex and have a significant impact on our long-term health and quality of life. By helping users to make informed and satisfying decisions, Recommender Systems (RS) have the potential to support users in making healthier food choices. Intelligent users-modeling is a key challenge in achieving this potential. This paper investigates Ensemble Topic Modelling (EnsTM) based Feature Identification techniques for efficient user-modeling and recipe recommendation. It builds on findings in EnsTM to propose a reduced data representation format and a smart user-modeling strategy that makes capturing user-preference fast, efficient and interactive. This approach enables personalization, even in a cold-start scenario. We compared three EnsTM based variations through a user study with 48 participants, using a large-scale, real-world corpus of 230,876 recipes, and compare against a conventional Content Based (CB) approach. EnsTM based recommenders performed significantly better than the CB approach. Besides acknowledging multi-domain contents such as taste, demographics and cost, our proposed approach also considers user’s nutritional preference and assists them finding recipes under diverse nutritional categories. Furthermore, it provides excellent coverage and enables implicit understanding of user’s food practices. Subsequent analysis also exposed correlation between certain features and healthier lifestyle.
  • Publication
    Inductive Power Transfer for On-body Sensors. Defining a design space for safe, wirelessly powered on-body health sensors
    Designers of on-body health sensing devices face a difficult choice. They must either minimise the power consumption of devices, which in reality means reducing the sensing capabilities, or build devices that require regular battery changes or recharging. Both options limit the effectiveness of devices. Here we investigate an alternative. This paper presents a method of designing safe, wireless, inductive power transfer into on-body sensor products. This approach can produce sensing devices that can be worn for longer durations without the need for human intervention, whilst also having greater sensing and data capture capabilities. The paper addresses significant challenges in achieving this aim, in particular: device safety, sufficient power transfer, and human factors regarding device geometry. We show how to develop a device that meets stringent international safety guidelines for electromagnetic energy on the body and describe a design space that allows designers to make trade-offs that balance power transfer with other constraints, e.g. size and bulk, that affect the wearability of devices. Finally we describe a rapid experimental method to investigate the optimal placement of on-body devices and the actual versus theoretical power transfer for on-body, inductively powered devices. 
      242Scopus© Citations 6
  • Publication
    Empirically derived user attributes for the design of home healthcare technologies
    Designing effective home healthcare technologies is a complex task. In order to succeed, it is important to look beyond purely technology-driven solutions and to develop technologies and services that are flexible and reflect a sensitive understanding of the diverse users of such systems. The key contribution of this paper is to introduce 15 empirically derived attributes that can help designers to build a more detailed understanding of the potential users of home healthcare systems. The attributes are spread across four broad themes: technology in the home, experiences of technology, experiences of health and care, and thoughts about smart home technology for health and care. These themes and attributes emerged from an ethnographic study in which we interviewed people across 15 households. All interviews took place in people’s homes and were supplemented by home technology tours and cultural probes. It is intended that the 15 attributes be used in conjunction with demographic and household data to build a richer picture of personal experiences of home, health, and technology in real-life contexts. The aim was to provide an inclusive framework, based on empirically derived attributes, that helps to inform an overall user-centred design approach. To demonstrate one application of the attributes in design, the paper provides in-depth example of their use in the development of a rich set of data-driven personas.
      258Scopus© Citations 26
  • Publication
    Use of Smartphone Apps, Social Media, and Web- Based Resources to Support Mental Health and Well-Being: Online Survey
    Background: Technology can play an important role in supporting mental health. Many studies have explored the effectiveness, acceptability, or context of use of different types of mental health technologies. However, existing research has tended to investigate single types of technology at a time rather than exploring a wider ecosystem that people may use. This narrow focus can limit our understanding of how we could best design mental health technologies. Objective: The aim of this study was to investigate which technologies (smartphone apps, discussion forums and social media, and websites and Web-based programs) people use to support their mental health and why, whether they combine and use more than one technology, what purpose each technology serves, and which features people find the most valuable. Methods: We conducted an online survey to gather responses from members of the public who use technology to support their mental health and well-being. The survey was advertised on social media and via posters at a university. It explored usage patterns, frequently used features, and engagement with technology. To gain deeper insights into users’ preferences, we also thematically analyzed open-ended comments about each technology type and suggestions for improvements provided by the respondents. Results: In total, 81 eligible participants completed the survey. Smartphone apps were the most commonly used technology, with 78% of the participants (63/81) using them, either alone (40%) or in combination with other technologies (38%). Each type of technology was used for specific purposes: apps provided guided activities, relaxation, and enabled tracking; social media and discussion forums allowed participants to learn from the experiences of others and use that knowledge to understand their own situation; and Web-based programs and websites helped to find out how to deal on a day-to-day basis with stress and anxiety. The analysis of open-ended responses showed that although many people valued technology and felt it could support targeted activities, it was not seen as a substitute for traditional face-to-face therapy. Participants wanted technology to be more sophisticated and nuanced, supporting personalized and actionable recommendations. There was evidence that participants mistrusted technology, irrespective of the type, and had broader concerns regarding the impact of overuse of technology. Conclusions: People use different types of technology to support their mental health. Each can serve a specific purpose. Although apps are the most widely used technology, mixing and matching different types of technology is also common. Technology should not be seen as a replacement for traditional psychotherapy, rather it offers new opportunities to support mental health as part of an overall ecosystem. People want technology to be more nuanced and personalized to help them plan informed actions. Future interventions should explore the use of multiple technologies and their combined effects on mental health support.
      402Scopus© Citations 39
  • Publication
    Privacy, boundaries and smart homes for health: An ethnographic study
    This article explores how people negotiate borders and boundaries within the home, in the context of health and the introduction of new technologies. We draw on an ethnographic study involving a socially diverse group of people, which included people with experience of telecare or smart home energy systems. Participants engaged in various strategies to regulate the borders of their home, even though new technologies have begun to change the nature of these borders. Participants managed health conditions but also their use of technology through boundary work that permitted devices to be more or less visible and integrated within the home. Findings highlight that if smart healthcare technologies are to be accepted in the home then there is a need for mechanisms that allow people to control the interpretation of data and flow of information generated about them and their households.
      343Scopus© Citations 31