Sunday, 19 May 2013

8th International Conference of Persuasive Technology. Sydney 2013


The 8th International Conference on Persuasive Technology
April 3-5, Sydney, Australia.

"Persuasive Technology is an interdisciplinary research field that focuses on how interactive technologies and services can be designed to influence people’s attitudes and support positive behavior change. The 8th International Conference on Persuasive Technology featured insights into how mobile and internet-based applications can be designed to support positive behaviors changes in areas such as health, safety, and education". (

We were invited to present our short paper "Three Themes for Designing Games that Aim to Promote Positive Body Perception in Hospitalized Children. We presented it as a Poster. Our poster was very well received. We received very good feedback with comments such as "it is the best poster I've ever seen" or" I love it because there is almost no text".

The conference discussed many different topics, starting with its title, "Persuasive Technology". The word 'persuasive' has negative connotations, as the speaker Anthony Jameson highlighted in the first panel. He propossed different alternatives such as "Persusive and Choice - Supporting Technology". All different suggestions were related to concepts such as "Learning while doing" and "Taking Decitions". Learning from experiences is a way of Self-Monitoring and therefore more positive and appealing approach. The suggested names stress Support Choice, Empowerment and Changing Behaviour. The main message of the panel was to identify the uncomfortable aspect of the title and hence try to find a solution with a name that does not rely on the binary of positive/negative but rather on Thought Provoquing (even if it comes from taking pleasure from negative experiences).

Among all different projects' presentation and panel I felt more interested, because the filework, themes and issues, on the following ones:

- Reducing Texting and Driving.- A device project created to meassure and manage drivers texting on road as a way to decrease car accidents. The project was based on a video that participants visualized before signing to participate in the study. During several days (months) participant received sms everyday to remind them about the consequences of texting while driving. The aim of the project was to encourage them to stop texting. I personally found the project useful for society, interesting and inspiring.

- The Scrabble of Language- An interesdting project to 

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