Ambient influence: can twinkly lights lure and abstract representations trigger behavioral change?

Rogers, Yvonne; Hazlewood, William R.; Marshall, Paul; Dalton, Nick and Hertrich, Susanna (2010). Ambient influence: can twinkly lights lure and abstract representations trigger behavioral change? In: Proceedings of the 12th ACM international conference on Ubiquitous computing, 26-29 Sep 2010, Copenhagen, Denmark, pp. 261–270.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1145/1864349.1864372

Abstract

Can ubiquitous technologies be designed to nudge people to change their behavior? If so, how? We describe an ambient installation that was intended to help people decide – and to encourage them to reflect – when confronted with a choice. In this particular case, it was whether to take the stairs or the elevator in their place of work. The rationale was to push people towards a desired behavior at the point of decision-making and to reflect upon theirs and others’ aggregate behavior. We describe the ambient displays that were developed and the prototyping studies in which they were evaluated. The findings from an in-the-wild study are then presented. They reveal that even though people said they were not aware of changing their behavior, logged data of their actual behavior showed a significant change. We discuss these mixed findings in relation to whether ambient displays can influence at an unconscious or conscious leve

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