Summary & Pictures
Emotion Garage was the most well attended workshop at Automotive UI. The workshop was planned as a design thinking workshop to explore and design to user experiences of emotions in the vehicle. The workshop consisted of several exercises exploring the ways in which emotions could be detected, the relative difficulty of detecting different emotions in different channels, identifying the most significant emotions that occur during driving, speculating on how autonomous driving will change the emotions associated with driving and a design prototyping session in which people prototyped solutions to emotionally difficult situations on the road. At the end of the workshop we recorded one minute videos reflecting on our experiences.
Session 1: Icebreaker/Sensing Channels Exercise
The first session was designed to be an icebreaker and an exploration of the relative difficulty of detecting different types of emotions across different sensing channels. Each participant was given a card that specified an emotion e.g. “Joy, Sadness, Insecurity, Embarrassment, Anger” a channel of expression, e.g. “Acoustic, Facial Expression, Gesture, and Drawing” A card looks like:
Each workshop participant was given a card and was instructed to keep it secret. They went up to another participant and expressed their emotion through the channel specified. If the other participant was able to guess the emotion the guesser got a point. You could only guess once. Emotions like Anger and Joy were easy to guess. Insecurity was more difficult, especially in when expressed in modes like “drawing.” The exercise was designed to have people mix and mingle but also to start them thinking about the complexity of emotions and how different emotions might be detected differently across different sensing channels.
Session 2: Driving Situations & Resulting Emotions
In the next session we broke out into groups of six and did an exercise where we tried to remember significant emotions we had experienced while driving. Each person in the group was asked to put the emotion on one post-it and the situation that inspired the emotion on a second post-it. We then had people envision the future of driving – whatever level of autonomy they felt comfortable with. We asked them to envision how they thought their emotional experience would change and to describe how their envisioned future technology brought about that change.
At the end of the session, group leaders presented out the collective findings. Traffic inspired universally negative emotions, but with a wide range of arousal levels – from exhaustion to rage. Having the road to yourself inspired universally positive emotions from peace to joy. Imagined future tech inspired both positive and negative emotions, from envisioning how it would solve problems (automation allowing you to relax) to fear of how it could go wrong and take away freedom and joy of driving.
Session 3: Measurement Methods
Session 4: Rapid Prototyping!
The idea here is to calm down the driver during some negative affect episodes. The system will change the colour of the cabin in order to induce the driver in a more positive emotion, will diffuse some nice fragrance (e.g., lavender) and will propose the driver to listen to his/her favourite music with the special Empathetic DJ application!
Idea of the prototype was to develop an intelligent adaptive speech-based HMI that is able to include the driver’s personality within its attempts to regulate the driver’s / car user’s affective state caused by external events, e.g., somebody blocks your way. Adaptivity reaches its peak with the HMI’s ability to convey ironic comments to regulate driver’s / car user’s anger.
Automatic Child Separation System
Our prototype was a child isolation system that activated when it detected that children in the back seat were fighting. The system consisted of a system of “separator” panels that activated on acoustically detected yelling or visually detected poking, hitting, or “space encroachment” by one child on another. The separators lowered after the children calmed down both vocally and physically. Other variations were to have screen time mediated by quiet (more quiet, more screen time)
Situation: I’m on my way to an interview with Very Important Company. Suddenly, a traffic jam comes up and it becomes clear that I’ll be too late. The carsharing-fleet operator sends a message through my personal in-car assistant asking whether he should inform Very Important Company that I will be too late. Additionally, the assistant offers to take responsibility for the delay because of miscalculated optimal routes. I accept the offer and therefore the message is sent to the company. Subsequently, the assistant asks Very Important Company whether a skype connection should be set up. They answer with yes and therefore the interview is then started via skype while the passenger is in the traffic jam.