Live Texturing of Augmented Reality Characters from Colored Drawings

From the abstract – Coloring books capture the imagination of children and provide them with one of their earliest opportunities for creative expression. However, given the proliferation and popularity of digital devices, real-world activities like coloring can seem unexciting, and children become less engaged in them. Augmented reality holds unique potential to impact this situation by providing a bridge between real-world activities and digital enhancements. In this paper, we present an augmented reality coloring book App in which children color characters in a printed coloring book and inspect their work using a mobile device. The drawing is detected and tracked, and the video stream is augmented with an animated 3-D version of the character that is textured according to the child’s coloring. This is possible thanks to several novel technical contributions. We present a texturing process that applies the captured texture from a 2-D colored drawing to both the visible and occluded regions of a 3-D character in real time. We develop a deformable surface tracking method designed for colored drawings that uses a new outlier rejection algorithm for real-time tracking and surface deformation recovery. We present a content creation pipeline to efficiently create the 2-D and 3-D content. And, finally, we validate our work with two user studies that examine the quality of our texturing algorithm and the overall App experience.

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The Interface Theory of Perception

Perception is a product of evolution. Our perceptual systems, like our limbs and livers, have been shaped by natural selection. The effects of selection on perception can be studied using evolutionary games and genetic algorithms. To this end, we define and classify perceptual strategies and allow them to compete in evolutionary games in a variety of worlds with a variety of fitness functions. We find that veridical perceptions—strategies tuned to the true structure of the world—are routinely dominated by nonveridical strategies tuned to fitness. Veridical perceptions escape extinction only if fitness varies monotonically with truth. Thus, a perceptual strategy favored by selection is best thought of not as a window on truth but as akin to a windows interface of a PC. Just as the color and shape of an icon for a text file do not entail that the text file itself has a color or shape, so also our perceptions of space-time and objects do not entail (by the Invention of Space-Time Theorem) that objective reality has the structure of space-time and objects. An interface serves to guide useful actions, not to resemble truth. Indeed, an interface hides the truth; for someone editing a paper or photo, seeing transistors and firmware is an irrelevant hindrance. For the perceptions of H. sapiens, space-time is the desktop and physical objects are the icons. Our perceptions of space-time and objects have been shaped by natural selection to hide the truth and guide adaptive behaviors. Perception is an adaptive interface.

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Survivance: An Indigenous Social Impact Game

The abstract – Social impact games are on the rise as a means of encouraging social change through gameplay. This dissertation describes the outcomes of playing Survivance (http://www.survivance.org) — an Indigenous social impact game that honors storytelling, art, and self-determination as pathways to healing from historical trauma caused by colonization in Turtle Island (North America).

The research addresses a gap in studies that specifically explore the impact of social impact games while uniquely merging Indigenous and Game Studies scholarship. The study focuses on gameplay spread over one year involving ten core players and three validation players. The players are from the urban Indigenous community in Portland, Oregon in the United States of America, where Survivance was developed collaboratively with the non-profit organization Wisdom of the Elders, Inc. as an extension of its multimedia health and wellness curriculum Discovering Our Story. Thus, this research is positioned within Indigenous ways of knowing. It is informed by biskaabiiyang methodology, an Anishinaabe approach of “returning to ourselves.”

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Old telephone with rotary dial

Human Factors Engineering Studies of the Design and Use of Pushbutton Telephone Sets

In a recent post on Data Genetics blog, the author writes: “Have you ever thought “Why are the numbers on a telephone keypad arranged the way they are? Why are they arranged in a 3×3 grid with the zero below? How did this layout become a standard? Why is this layout subtly different to the way the numbers are arranged on a calculator or numeric keypad? What other layouts were considered? The answers to these questions can be found in a fascinating piece of research performed by AT&T in 1960.

[…]

The article was entitled: Human Factors Engineering Studies of the Design and Use of Pushbutton Telephone Sets […] This classical piece of research covers four aspects of the keypad design: Key arrangement, Force displacement characteristics, Button top design, and Central office factors. The outcome of this research project and testing is the keypad we know today. In my blog posting I’m going to summarize just the results the key arrangements. For details of the other criteria and decisions refer to the article.”

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survival shooter game

Time Pressure As Video Game Design Element And Basic Need Satisfaction

Abstract – Over the last few decades, with the help of technological advancements in computational power and improvements in interaction design, video games have been prominent instruments for entertainment. With increasing number of players, researchers mainly have focused on revealing underlying psychological reasons behind gaming. By applying Self-Determination Theory (SDT) in gaming context, it is concluded that satisfactions of three basic intrinsic needs, namely, autonomy, competence and relatedness, are the predictors of motivation to play video games.

However, only a few studies focused on game features supporting each of these three basic needs. Game developers might make use of the discovery of the specific game features contributing specific need satisfactions while designing games in which motivation and engagement are ensured.

In this thesis, the relations between time pressure which is one of the commonly used game design element and autonomy and competence need satisfactions are observed. In an experimental design, time pressure is manipulated to establish two conditions (no time pressure in control group and time pressure in experimental group) by implementing countdown mechanics in a 3D survival shooting game. Mediating effects of autonomy and competence on the associations between time pressure and intrinsic motivation, flow, engagement, performance and enjoyment are also observed.

Results showed that, although there was a significant difference in perceived time pressure of players, no significant differences were found in autonomy and competence need satisfactions between two conditions. Similarly, no differences in intrinsic motivation, engagement, performance and enjoyment between two conditions were revealed. The only significant difference was found in flow between iv control and experimental conditions such that the participants in the experimental condition experienced more flow than those in the control condition. However, there were significant differences in flow and engagement among a subgroup of experimental condition, who failed to complete the goal in the game in the specified time limit, and other subgroups (both in control and experimental groups) who successfully completed the game in the given time. Competence and performance decreased with the increase in perceived time pressure within experimental group but the differences did not reach significance. On the other hand, flow and engagement were enhanced with the increase in perceived time pressure.

These findings give us the idea that there may be an optimal time limit in which autonomy and competence are maximized and positively correlated, and thus intrinsic motivation, flow, engagement, performance and enjoyment are promoted throughout game play

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Yıldırım, Irem Gökçe Time Pressure As Video Game Design Element And Basic Need Satisfaction, MSc Thesis, Department of Modeling and Simulation Supervisor, August 2015, 57 pages

A literature review of gamification design frameworks

A literature review of gamification design frameworks

Abstract – This paper presents a review of the literature on gamification design frameworks. Gamification, understood as the use of game design elements in other contexts for the purpose of engagement, has become a hot topic in the recent years. However, there’s also a cautionary tale to be extracted from Gartner’s reports on the topic: many gamification-based solutions fail because, mostly, they have been created on a whim, or mixing bits and pieces from game components, without a clear and formal design process. The application of a definite design framework aims to be a path to success. Therefore, before starting the gamification of a process, it is very important to know which frameworks or methods exist and their main characteristics. The present review synthesizes the process of gamification design for a successful engagement experience. This review categorizes existing approaches and provides an assessment of their main features, which may prove invaluable to developers of gamified solutions at different levels and scopes.

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Alberto Mora, Daniel Riera, Carina Gonzalez,  Joan Arnedo-Moreno, “A literature review of gamification design frameworks”, Conference paper, September 2015

No Reciprocity in “Liking” Photos: Analyzing Like Activities in Instagram

No Reciprocity in “Liking” Photos: Analyzing Like Activities in Instagram

From the abstract: “In social media, people often press a “Like” button to indicate their shared interest in a particular content or to acknowledge the user who posted the content. Such activities form relationships and networks among people, raising interesting questions about their unique characteristics and implications. However, little research has investigated such Likes as a main study focus. To address this lack of understanding, based on a theoretical framework, we present an analysis of the structural, influential, and contextual aspects of Like activities from the test datasets of 20 million users and their 2 billion Like activities in Instagram. Our study results first highlight that Like activities and networks increase exponentially, and are formed and developed by one’s friends and many random users. Second, we observe that five other essential Instagram elements influence the number of Likes to different extents, but following others will not necessarily increase the number of Likes that one receives. Third, we explore the relationship between LDA-based topics and Likes, characterize two user groups-specialists and generalists-and show that specialists tend to receive more Likes and promote themselves more than generalists. We finally discuss theoretical and practical implications and future research directions.”

Found on ACM Digital Library.

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Jin Yea Jang, Kyungsik Han, Dongwon Lee , “No Reciprocity in “Liking” Photos: Analyzing Like Activities in Instagram”, Proceeding HT ’15 Proceedings of the 26th ACM Conference on Hypertext & Social Media, Pages 273-282

 

Micro-Gesture Interaction on the Gear Shift

Micro-Gesture Interaction on the Gear Shift

From the abstract: “Modern cars offer a wide variety of infotainment functionality, including music players, navigation systems and full-featured internet access. Traditional interaction methods using buttons and knobs have long reached their limits and the frequently used touch screens require the drivers visual attention reducing driving safety. Gestural interaction is a promising solution to cope with the complexity of modern in-vehicle information systems with less distraction. To further explore this idea, micro-gesture interaction on the gear shift is investigated in this thesis.

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Texting while walking: adapting to accommodate technological changes

Texting while walking: adapting to accommodate technological changes

From the abstract: “Mobile phone texting is a common daily occurrence with a paucity of research examining corresponding gait characteristics. To date, most studies have participants walk in a straight line vs. overcoming barriers and obstacles that occur during regular walking. The aim of our study is to examine the effect of mobile phone texting during periods of cognitive distraction while walking and negotiating barriers synonymous with pedestrian traffic.

Thirty participants (18-50y) completed three randomized, counter-balanced walking tasks over a course during: (1) normal walking (control), (2) texting and walking, and (3) texting and walking whilst being cognitively distraction via a standard mathematical test performed while negotiating the obstacle course. We analyzed gait characteristics during course negotiation using a 3-dimensional motion analysis system and a general linear model and Dunnet-Hsu post-hoc procedure the normal walking condition to assess gait characteristic differences. Primary outcomes included the overall time to complete the course time and barrier contact. Secondary outcomes included obstacle clearance height, step frequency, step time, double support phase and lateral deviation.

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Benevolent Deception in Human Computer Interaction

Benevolent Deception in Human Computer Interaction

From the abstract: “Though it has been asserted that “good design is honest,” deception exists throughout human-computer interaction research and practice. Because of the stigma associated with deception—in many cases rightfully so—the research community has focused its energy on eradicating malicious deception, and ignored instances in which deception is positively employed. In this paper, we present the notion of benevolent deception, deception aimed at benefitting the user as well as the developer. We frame our discussion using a criminology-inspired model and ground components in various examples. We assert that this provides us with a set of tools and principles that not only helps us with system and interface design, but that opens new research areas. After all, as Cockton claims in his 2004 paper “Value-Centered HCI”, “Traditional disciplines have delivered truth. The goal of HCI is to deliver value.”

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See the slides.

Eytan Adar, Desney Tan, and Jaime Teevan, “Benevolent Deception in Human Computer Interaction”, CHI 2013