Intentacles: wearable interactive antennae to sense and express emotion

Petre, Marian; Bowers, David; Baker, Thomas; Copcutt, Ed; Lawson, Adam; Martindale, Adam; Moses, Ben and Yan, Yige (2013). Intentacles: wearable interactive antennae to sense and express emotion. In: CHI EA '13: CHI '13 Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems, ACM SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, pp. 2861–2862.



'Intentacles' are wearable, programmable antennae intended to augment the wearer's communication of emotion. The antennae move in 3D and change colour, controlled by an Arduino Nano. The antennae's behaviour can be controlled directly using buttons, or programmed to respond to sensor inputs. Intentacles can respond to external stimuli such as music, light levels, or temperature, and/or to the wearer's physiological responses, such as pulse and movement. Preliminary user studies found that antennae actions which mirror stereotypical hand and eyebrow gestures are easily understood by other people. It helps if the actions are executed well, and if the antennae move intermittently, rather than continuously. After a while, people stop paying direct attention to the antennae per se, but they continue to notice changes, and to engage with the emotional expression. Further work will study the antennae in different social interactions.

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