domenica 19 gennaio 2020

The best UX and design events in 2020

The best UX and design events in 2020

A comprehensive list for designers who are looking for design events, meetups, and conferences to attend this year.

January

Group
January 6-8, 2020 ✈ Sanibel Island, Florida, United States

In/Visible Talks
January 16, 2020 ✈ San Francisco, California, United States

DesignTO
January 17-26, 2020 ✈ Toronto, Canada

UXCamp DC
January 18, 2020 ✈ Washington DC, United States

Awwwards Conference Tokyo
January 23-24, 2020 ✈ Tokyo, Chiyoda, Japan

New Adventures
January 23, 2020 ✈ Nottingham, United Kingdom

International Conference on MSIVISM
January 29-31, 2020 ✈ Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain

February

Chief Customer Officers
February 5-6, 2020 ✈ Atlanta, Georgia, United States

Pause Fest
February 5-7, 2020 ✈ Melbourne, Australia

Interaction 20
February 7-20, 2020 ✈ Milan, Italy

Outcome
February 8, 2020 ✈ Chandigarh, India

TEI: International Conference on Tangible, Embedded, and Embodied Interaction
February 9-13, 2020 ✈ Sydney, Australia

Australian Accessibility Conference
February 11-13, 2020 ✈ Victoria Park, Australia

UXistanbul Conference
February 18, 2020 ✈ Istanbul, Turkey

Awwwards Conference
February 20-21, 2020 ✈ Amsterdam, Netherlands

User Experience Hong Kong
“With recent disruptive events in Hong Kong this conference is on hold but we hope to announce some supporting events in 2020" ✈ Hong Kong, China

UXI Live
February 23-24, 2020 ✈ Rishon Lezion, Israel

ProfsoUX
February 28, 2020 ✈ St. Petersburg, Russia

Interaction Design Education Summit
February 29-March 1, 2020 ✈ Milan, Italy


March

The UX Conference
March 2-3, 2020 ✈ London, England

ConveyUX
March 3-5, 2020 ✈ Seattle, Washington, United States

Service Design in Government
March 4-6, 2020 ✈ Edinburgh, Scotland

Leading Design
March 4-6, 2020 ✈ San Francisco, California, United States

International Conference on SETECEC
March 10-13, 2020 ✈ Venice, Italy

NO/BS Conference
March 11-12, 2020 ✈ Melbourne, Australia

Deliver Conference
March 12, 2020 ✈ Manchester, United Kingdom

SXSW
March 13-22, 2020 ✈ Austin, Texas, United States

CHIIR
March 14-18, 2020 ✈ Vancouver, Canada

Booster Conference
March 18-20, 2020 ✈ Bergen, Norway

Design Research
March 18-20, 2020 ✈ Melbourne, Australia

Perth UX Camp
March 19-20, 2020 ✈ Perth, Australia

Ignite UX
March 24, 2020 ✈ Ann Arbor, Michigan, United States

Advancing Research
March 30-April 1, 2020 ✈ New York City, New York, United States

UX Copenhagen
March 30-31, 2020 ✈ Copenhagen, Denmark

AIGA Design Conference
March 30-April 1, 2020 ✈ Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States

April

UIArchConf
April 1-3, 2020 ✈ New Orleans, Louisiana, United States

Creative South
April 2-4, 2020 ✈ Columbus, Georgia, United States

Offset
April 3-5, 2020 ✈ Dublin, Ireland

UX Insight
April 6-8, 2020 ✈ Breda, The Netherlands

University of Illinois Web Conference
April 8-9, 2020 ✈ Champaign-Urbana, Illinois, United States

UX Days Tokyo
April 10, 2020 ✈ Tokyo, Japan

An Event Apart
April 13-15, 2020 ✈ Washington DC, United States

Digital Thinking
April 14–17, 2020 ✈ Austin, Texas, United States

Health Experience Design Conference
April 14-15, 2020 ✈ Boston, Massachusetts, United States

IAC Information Architecture Conference
April 14-18, 2020 ✈ New Orleans, Louisiana, United States

Customer Experience Strategies Summit
April 16-17, 2020 ✈ Toronto, Canada

UX STRAT
April 20-21, 2020 ✈ Singapore

SmashingConf
April 21-22, 2020 ✈ San Francisco, California, United States

UX Healthcare
April 22-24, 2020 ✈ London, United Kingdom

OFFF
April 23-25, 2020 ✈ Barcelona, Spain

CHI
April 25-30, 2020 ✈ Honolulu, Hawaii, United States

Beyond Tellerrand
April 27-29, 2020 ✈ Düsseldorf, Germany

Ergonomics & Human Factors
April 27-29, 2020 ✈ Stratford, United Kingdom

May

Pixel Up
May 4-6, 2020 ✈ Cape Town, South Africa

From Business to Buttons
May 6-8, 2020 ✈ Stockholm, Sweden

An Event Apart
May 11-13, 2020 ✈ Seattle, Washington, United States

Camp Digital
May 13, 2020 ✈ Manchester, United Kingdom

GamesUR
May 14, 2020 ✈ Montreal, Canada

UXConf BR
May 15-16, 2020 ✈ Porto Alegre, Brazil

UX Salon
May 17-18, 2020 ✈ Tel Aviv, Israel

Confab
May 17-20, 2020 ✈ Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States

UXLx User Experience Lisbon
May 19-22, 2020 ✈ Lisbon, Portugal

ACE!
May 20-22, 2020 ✈ Kraków, Poland

Digital Health and Care Congress
May 20-21, 2020 ✈ London, United Kingdom

Ecommerce Design Summit
May 20-21, 2020 ✈ London, United Kingdom

UX London
May 27-29, 2020 ✈ London, United Kingdom

DesignOps Global Conference
May 28-29, 2020 ✈ Manchester, United Kingdom

Front UX & Product Management
May 28-29, 2020 ✈ Salt Lake City, Utah, United States

UX Camp Europe
May 30-31, 2020 ✈ Berlin, Germany


June

POLISHOPA Design Thinking Conference
June 1-4, 2020 ✈ Bydgoszcz, Poland

Fluxible
June 1-7, 2020 ✈ Ontario, Canada

UX Research Conference
June 3-5, 2020 ✈ Toronto, Canada

99U
June 3-5, 2020 ✈ New York City, New York, United States

By Design
June 6, 2020 ✈ Bratislava, Slovakia

SmashingConf
June 9-10, 2020 ✈ Austin, Texas, United States

Enterprise Experience
June 10-12, 2020 ✈ San Francisco, California, United States

UX Scotland
June 10-12, 2020 ✈ Edinburgh, Scotland

Experience Fighters
June 10-11, 2020 ✈ Madrid, Spain

Pixel Pioneers Bristol
June 12, 2020 ✈ Bristol, United Kingdom

IMX Interactive Media Experiences
June 17-19, 2020 ✈ Barcelona, Spain

The Next Web
June 18-19, 2020 ✈ Amsterdam, Netherlands

UXPA
June 23-25, 2020 ✈ Baltimore, Maryland, United States

UX Healthcare
June 24-26, 2020 ✈ Amsterdam, Netherlands

User Research London
June 26, 2020 ✈ London, United Kingdom

An Event Apart
June 29-July 1, 2020 ✈ Boston, Massachusetts, United States

UX STRAT
June 29-July 1, 2020 ✈ Amsterdam, Netherlands

July

HCI International
July 19-24, 2020 ✈ Copenhagen, Denmark

UX Research & Insights Summit
July 21-23, 2020 ✈ Boston, Massachusetts, United States

August

An Event Apart
August 17-19, 2020 ✈ Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States

Beyond Tellerrand
August 24-27, 2020 ✈ Berlin, Germany

UX Australia
August 25-28, 2020 ✈ Melbourne, Australia

September

SmashingConf
September 7-8, 2020 ✈ Freiburg, Germany

UX Healthcare
September 17-18, 2020 ✈ Frankfurt, Germany

Design Matters
September 23-24, 2020 ✈ Copenhagen, Denmark

October

An Event Apart
October 5-7, 2020 ✈ Orlando, Florida, United States

MobileHCI
October 5-8, 2020 ✈ Oldenburg, Germany

Canvas Conference
October 8, 2020 ✈ Birmingham, United Kingdom

UXDX Conference
October 8-9, 2020 ✈ Dublin, Ireland

UX-DAY
October 14-16, 2020 ✈ Mannheim, Germany

Amuse UX Conference
October 16, 2020 ✈ Budapest, Hungary

Smashing Conference
October 20-21, 2020 ✈ New York City, New York, United States

World Usability Congress
October 20-21, 2020 ✈ Graz, Austria

Interaction Latin America
To be confirmed, 2020 ✈ San Jose, Costa Rica

November

Beyond Tellerrand
November 2-4, 2020 ✈ Munich, Germany

Web Summit
November 2-5, 2020 ✈ Lisbon, Portugal

December

An Event Apart
December 14-16, 2020 ✈ San Francisco, California, United States

martedì 14 gennaio 2020

30+ Logo Stats and Facts – New Fortune 500 List Research

30+ Logo Stats and Facts – New Fortune 500 List Research


Just how much do you know about logos?

There are so many “best practices” in logo design that it’s easy to get lost in all that knowledge. But even the most experienced designers and biggest brand enthusiasts among us can always learn something new.
That’s why we’ve done the research and are here to shake things up with the most up-to-date logo statistics from the Fortune 500 list.
Along with insights from our own data analysis, we’ll be sharing statistics, interesting trends, and fun facts about logos and branding. Busy CEO, in-house marketer, or even freelancer, you’re sure to find something that will help you grow your brand and boost your business.

Current Logo Design Trends from Top Companies

Successful logo design is a balance between fitting in and standing out, adhering to best practices without getting too generic. So how do the most successful companies in the world achieve this tricky design balance? Let’s look at the numbers to find out.
We compiled the following logo statistics by analyzing companies from the 2019 Fortune 500 list.

1. Combination Logos Rule the Field

We divided the Fortune 500 logos into seven distinct types to see which logo style is most popular.
7 types of logos

And the findings are pretty clear: combination logos rule! Of these top 500 companies, over 60% use combination logos.
The full breakdown is as follows:
  • Combination logos – 307
  • Wordmarks – 155
  • Lettermarks – 24
  • Emblems – 12
  • Abstract icons – 1
  • Pictorial icons – 1


Which logo types do Fortune 500 companies use?

It’s no surprise that combination logos are so popular. By including both a wordmark and an icon, combination logos are incredibly versatile – allowing companies to use the icon, the text, or the full combination depending on the context of the logo.
In case you’re curious, the two companies that generally use stand-alone icons? They’re none other than Nike (abstract icon) and Apple (pictorial icon). No wordmark needed here!


2. The Most Popular Color Is Blue
Among Fortune 500 companies, blue is the top logo color by far, accounting for nearly 40% of the entire list.


3. When Combining Colors, Two Is Standard
4. Black and Red Is the Top Combination
5. Other Color Combinations Are More Unique
6. What About Gradients?
7. Sans Serif Fonts Are In
8. To Capitalize or Not to Capitalize?

A Look at Rebranding and Logo Redesign

1. Why Companies Rebrand
2. Famous Logo Rebrands
3. Infamous Logo Rebrands
4. How Consumers React to Logo Redesigns
5. No Redesign Here: Tried-and-True Logos

The Logo Design Industry

1. Agencies Are Still a Big Player
2. But Big Agencies Are Too Costly for Most Small Businesses
3. In-House Design Happens, Too
4. Freelancing Platforms Are Growing
5. Crowdsourcing: Not New but Popular
6. Vector Graphics Software
7. DIY Logo Makers Are Getting Better
8. What About Stock Photos?

The Logo/Graphic Design Industry

1. Self-Employment Is King
2. Agencies Are Going Flexible, Too
3. Job Growth Will Be Digital
4. Formal Education vs. Skill-Based Training

The Target Audience

1. First Impressions Happen Faster Than You Think
2. Consistent Branding Matters
3. Color, Color, Color!
4. Shape Matters, Too
5. Symmetrical vs. Asymmetrical Logos
6. How Memorable Are Famous Logos?
7. Consumers’ Memory of Color

Future Projections: Logo Design Moving Forward

1. Technology Will Drive Changes
2. Rise of Animation
3. Importance of Dynamic Logos

More Fun Facts About Logos

1. Oldest Trademarked Logos
2. Can You Trademark a Color?
3. Most Expensive Logos in the World
4. Salvador Dali, Logo Designer?
5. Most Prolific Logo Designer

venerdì 4 ottobre 2019

The refrigerator top freezer handle

The refrigerator top freezer handle



I was recently cooking food with my girlfriend, and she goes into the fridge to pull out something.  Next thing I knew, BAM and “AAHHH” were the sounds ringing in my ears.  She had stood up and smashed her head on the freezer handle of the refrigerator.  After a string of unmentionable words from her, I told her I’d blog about this.

How many of us have felt this same, unbearable pain?  Why, does this keep happening?  WHAT IS THE PROBLEM?  Well, the issue here is two things (besides the worst head pain ever):  memory and placement.  The handle is placed at a point where our short-term memory will completely forget about it.

When we kneel down to reach for something, we have the inclination to look around us to see if we are in a “safe zone”.  Once we have identified the area as “safe” we proceed into doing what we initially set out to do.

At this point, our minds are focused on what our goal is now and have pushed out that short term memory that initial “safe zone”.  The resulting factor is a head-splitting headache and a string of bad words.

This design does not understand how users think.  We as designers need to fully understand the process of which users take use of our products.  This includes their thought process.  The design of this refrigerator does not take into account how users’ minds function, and it sometimes results in a very frustrated user.

Again, we can avoid this by understanding our users’ needs and goals.



_____ 

How do you open the refrigerator?


At my new job there is a refrigerator where employees put their lunches. The first time I tried to open the refrigerator I didn't see a handle on the front, but I found one on the left side of the door. (See arrow.) I pulled on the handle, but the door would not open. I thought maybe the refrigerator door had a really strong seal, so I pulled harder. I pulled so hard the whole refrigerator started moving! Someone standing nearby told me, "It opens from the other side. I had the same problem when I first tried to open it."
I looked on the right side of the refrigerator and sure enough, there was a handle there too! When I pulled on that handle, the refrigerator door opened easily.

Apparently, the refrigerator door was designed so it could be hinged on either the left or the right side. Thus, handles were put on both sides. However, people only expect to see one handle on a refrigerator door. When the handle doesn't work, they assume the door is stuck or locked.

Design suggestion

It would be best to put a handle on the front of a refrigerator door so that it can be easily seen. On a reversible door with handles on both sides of the door, there should be a way of removing or concealing the handle on the hinged side. There should not be visible handles on both sides!

domenica 11 agosto 2019

Why Is Bad User Experience Design Still A Thing?

Why Is Bad User Experience Design Still A Thing?



The other day I decided to set up two relatively common household products: (1) a wireless router and (2) a portable steamer. The instruction manuals and the resulting experiences of each setup couldn’t have been more different. Can you guess which required more energy, brain power and patience?



Ding ding ding ding ding! It was the steamer!

Why did setting up an appliance with mechanical engineering akin to a kitchen kettle feel like preparing a space shuttle launch…while a device manufactured by a cable company took five minutes with zero aggravation or ambiguity? The answer: User Experience design.

Good UX: The Router Setup


Setting up routers used to involve sitting on the phone with the cable company and wishing it was somebody else’s job. Now it’s as simple as flipping open a glossy, single-page pamphlet and following clear, colorful diagrams placed alongside highly legible text.



There was even some witty Easter Egg copy as if a real human being wrote it and not just a systems engineer:



Relax? No problem! In fact, when the blinking lights stopped flashing after just two minutes, I felt like a technical genius.

Bad UX: The Steamer


The steamer was another story. A list of 14 steps with essentially no visual hierarchy made it nearly impossible to skim for the most important information: how to avoid burning yourself. In fact, this nugget is all the way at the bottom of list item 13, below a mountainous, monotonous section of text. “The water in the reservoir can severely burn skin.”
Seriously?!

The visual aid stresses the importance of moving the steamer up and down. This doesn’t seem like the most important and/or complicated piece of information for a user to grasp.


___________ 

Here’s how I would have written this information: 

Before You Begin:
1. DO NOT fill with water past the max line.
2. DO NOT tilt the steamer back and forth or water will drip out.
Use an up-down motion, not too long in the same spot. 
3. When you’re done OR need a refill, unplug.
Wait 5 minutes after unplugging for unit to cool before handling.

STEP 1: Fill steamer with water.
- Twist reservoir cap clockwise to open.
- Add tap water up to the maximum line. Do not overfill.
- Replace reservoir cap and twist counter-clockwise to close.

STEP 2: Turn on device.
- Plug device into power outlet and press ON.
- When on, the switch will light up.
- Wait 2-3 minutes for unit to heat up.

STEP 3: Steam clothing.
- Always keep unit in an upright position.
- Point steam holes at wrinkled fabric. Move steamer in an up-down direction.
- For best results, pull fabric firmly in place while steaming.

STEP 4: Unplug and allow to cool before handling.
- Even after turned off, any water inside the unit will remain boiling hot.
- Wait 5 minutes before handling.
- Once cool, empty excess water and replace cap.
- Store in a cool, dry place.

_____________ 

People who buy portable steamers value convenience. It should be easier to assemble. My revision lists key safety concerns at the top followed by a logical order of steps, told in fewer words.

source: emsok

lunedì 29 luglio 2019

Design Critiques

Design Critiques


 design critiques - Pratt Institute


About IXD@Pratt

IXD@Pratt is a collection of articles about User Experience and its related disciplines. The website is maintained by faculty and students at Pratt Institute’s School of Information and all content is written by students, alumni, and faculty associated with the Master of Science in Information Experience Design and User Experience (UX) Advanced Certificate programs.

Pratt Institute, School of Information
144 West 14th Street, 6th Floor
New York, NY 10011-7301

********************
Examples 2019

Design Critique: MYmta (iPhone app)

Source: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/mymta/id1297605670?mt=8

Introduction
The MYmta iPhone app is a travel app designed to provide relevant information related to New York City’s many public transit options: subways, buses, LIRR and Metro-North rail services, and the Access-A-Ride program. The app allows for real-time scheduling and service changes, as well as personalized settings and trip planning, and station accessibility information.


************ 

Design Critique: Netflix (Desktop App)



Fig 1.1 – Before signing into Netflix

Netflix is a major streaming service that allows users to watch TV shows, movies, animations and more. It has so much entertainment that you can never say, there is nothing to watch. In order to use Netflix, the new user could start with a one month free trial (which they can cancel anytime) or subscribe by paying monthly. The app itself is free, which is available in mobile, tablet and desktop versions.


**************** 
Design Critique: Notes (iPhone App)



The iOS built-in Notes app empowers users’ note taking capability by providing seamless synchronization feature, supporting multimedia input/insert, and even integrating the sketch feature to simulate the analog note-taking experience. This article would critique the Notes App based on some usability factors mentioned by Don Norman’s book- The Design of Everyday Things.

sabato 8 giugno 2019

25+ Epic Design Fails

25+ Epic Design Fails That Are So Bad We Can’t Believe They Actually Happened



I Don’t Even Have Words For This
bad design



This Gray-Scale Pie Chart
worst design products


I Felt Quite Lost In China, But Fortunately, I Found This Sign
bad user experience


Human Traffic Jams

and many more examples

photofunonline.com

domenica 2 giugno 2019

Epic Design Fails That Are So Bad, We Can’t Believe They Actually Happened

Epic Design Fails That Are So Bad, We Can’t Believe They Actually Happened 



 Nothing Like The Smell Of Coffee And A Good Eye-Stab In The Morning


worst design products


I Was Looking For A Soap Dispenser Labeled “Ketchup” With A Picture Of Grapes

epic fails


That’s Gonna Be An Easy Ride

bad design

and many more examples

photofunonline.com

lunedì 27 maggio 2019

Best Conferences for UX Researchers 2019

Best Conferences for UX Researchers 2019

by Ania Mastalerz

Conferences for UX Researchers 2019

Upcoming UX, Usability, and UI Conferences in 2019

Looking to update your knowledge and connect with other professionals at UX Conferences in 2019? Here’s the list so far for UX Conferences including user experience, design, usability and UI topics announced around the world with many more that we’re tracking waiting to announce their 2019 dates. Find the right conference that meets your needs: focus topics, timing, location or cost. 

lunedì 24 dicembre 2018

FREE WIREFRAME KIT

Free Wireframe Kit

by AlterSpark Corp.


Download PDF (need Email)

Mini prototyping templates (8.5 x 11)
We use the Digital Psychology Wireframe Kit to help our students develop their skills in applying behavioral science strategies to a wide range of interactive media.
After rearchitecting our wireframe kit in 2017, our students and friends started asking for a copy.
To share the love with the wider community of digital media pros, here's a copy of our smaller 8.5 x 11 wireframe kit, under a flexible creative commons license.

About the wireframe kit
Paper is the ultimate wireframing tool for building quick concept mockups and prototypes, with full creative freedom.
We use the oversized version of the wireframe kit in our digital psychology training, where we focus on applying psychology to various interactive design, UX and marketing applications.
Since our focus is on creative concepts, rather than pixel-perfect specifications, the kit provides ballpark dimensions across a wide range of popular devices, for websites, apps, wearables, advertising and more.
This wireframe kit does not include our training system; only device specifications.



Prototype specifications
Our grid system is inspired by the Bootstrap CSS system and uses a format that is convenient for adaptive or responsive breakpoints, at 3, 4, or 6 column divisions.
The grid is 1,200 pixels wide, divided into 12 columns, with dark gridlines every 100 pixels, each with 10 light gridlines, each at 10 pixels. This is a rough approximation of the sizes typically used in grid systems, with some smaller and others larger.
Our prototype wireframe specifications follow the proportions of popular products, such as the iPhone 8, iPad Air, and Apple Watch Series 3.
Our Facebook ad templates are based on 1200x1200 and 1200x628 pixels, which are common image dimensions used across various social media ad platforms.
Our banner ad templates are based on the most common display advertising formats used in Google's adaptive ads and AdRoll’s remarketing banners.


FREE to use, under Creative Commons
This 8.5 x 11 wireframe kit is distributed for free, under Creative Commons License Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International (CC BY-SA 4.0). If you distribute any variations, please respect our licensing and show your love by crediting us with a link to: https://www.alterspark.com. To view the license, visit: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/.


Stay in touch
If you have any suggestions on how we can make it better, get in touch by email team@alterspark.com or visit us online at: https://www.alterspark.com.

Gallery of wireframe prototypes



_____________ 

Walking You Through The Audience-Influence Model

Download PDF (need Email)

In “Walking You Through the Audience-Influence Model”, you'll learn the essentials of digital psychology in an intuitive and visual mini-publication. You'll also enjoy templates, worksheets and research questions that you can implement immediately.

domenica 9 dicembre 2018

Robots have power to significantly influence children’s opinions

Robots have power to significantly influence children’s opinions


A study published in Science Robotics provides an interesting insight into how robots could be used positively within society
Credit: Alan Williams
Credit: CITEC/Bielefeld University
Young children are significantly more likely than adults to have their opinions and decisions influenced by robots, according to new research.

The study, conducted at the University of Plymouth, compared how adults and children respond to an identical task when in the presence of both their peers and humanoid robots.

It showed that while adults regularly have their opinions influenced by peers, something also demonstrated in previous studies, they are largely able to resist being persuaded by robots.

However, children aged between seven and nine were more likely to give the same responses as the robots, even if they were obviously incorrect.

The study used the Asch paradigm, first developed in the 1950s, which asks people to look at a screen showing four lines and say which two matches in length. When alone, people almost never make a mistake but when doing the experiment with others, they tend to follow what others are saying.

When children were alone in the room in this research, they scored 87 per cent on the test, but when the robots join in their score drops to 75 per cent. And of the wrong answers, 74 per cent matched those of the robot.


In their conclusion to the current study, the researchers add:
“A future in which autonomous social robots are used as aids for education professionals or child therapists is not distant. In these applications, the robot is in a position in which the information provided can significantly affect the individuals they interact with. A discussion is required about whether protective measures, such as a regulatory framework, should be in place that minimises the risk to children during social child-robot interaction and what form they might take so as not to adversely affect the promising development of the field.”

___________ 

Children put on by robots

Source: Bielefeld University 

An adult participant in the study. Image: Vollmer et al., Sci. Robot. 3, eaat7111 (2018)

Conducted by computer scientist Anna-Lisa Vollmer of the Cluster of Excellence Cognitive Interaction Technology (CITEC) at Bielefeld University as well as her colleagues from Plymouth University (United Kingdom), the Max Planck Institute for Human Development (Berlin) and Ghent University (Belgium), this study appeared on Wednesday (15.08.2018) in the scientific journal "Science Robotics."

The research team used the "conformity experiment" - the experiment psychologist Salomon Asch became known for in the 1950s. The experiment shows just how much a group can influence the opinion of an individual. "The test subjects are tasked with evaluating a visual image, and they hear the incorrect assessment from the others in the group - who are all 'in' on the experiment," explains Anna-Lisa Vollmer, who is a member of Applied Informatics, a research group led by Professor Dr. Britta Wrede that is part of the Faculty of Technology and CITEC.

In this new study, it is not people who are "in" on the experiment, but rather three Nao robots. These humanoid robots are able to speak and gesticulate, and are significantly smaller than adult humans (standing at approximately 60 centimeters). The study was divided into two parts. In the first phase of the experiment, the researchers investigated whether adults adjusted their assessment based on the one put forth by the three robots present. In the second phase, 7-9 year-old children took part in the experiment. The study participants viewed a vertical line on a screen. They had to compare the length of this line with three other lines (A, B, and C), and then say which of these lines was the same length. If the right answer was "B," the robot would, for instance, incorrectly claim that "C" was correct.

The results: "Children give into the social pressure induced by the group of robots," says Anna-Lisa Vollmer. "Adults, on the other hand, withstand this influence, even though they would be influenced by other humans in the same situation."

According to Vollmer, the factors responsible for the Nao robots exerting peer pressure or not have yet to be determined. The size of the Nao robots might be the reason why they were not able to influence the adults in this experiment. "Due to their appearance and size, the Nao robots might be more likely to be perceived as being on the same level by the children." That said, the researchers made effort to compensate for size: in both experiments, the robots' seat level was adjusted to that of the participants.

The current study is pioneering work: "Even though children are considered to be an important user group in the future, it is not really known what influence robots have on children, and how robot behaviour impacts childhood development," says Anna-Lisa Vollmer.

The results of this study are also of practical relevance for the use of humanoid robots. "There are applications in which having influence is advantageous, such as in healthcare or education," says Anna-Lisa Vollmer. "But of course we cannot disregard abuse or erroneous use. For example, how do we deal with a situation in which several robots in a store advertise a product and get a person to buy it even though they would not have done so otherwise? Other risks include cases in which autonomously learning robots draw incorrect conclusions from their sensory data and then go with this to people who trust the robot's assessment," as Vollmer explains.

__________ 


HUMAN-ROBOT INTERACTION
Children conform, adults resist: A robot group induced peer pressure on normative social conformity
Anna-Lisa Vollmer1, Robin Read, Dries Trippas and Tony Belpaeme
Science Robotics  15 Aug 2018: Vol. 3, Issue 21, eaat7111  DOI: 10.1126/scirobotics.aat7111