Interactions in the Wild

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CHI+MED: Computer-Human Interaction for Medical Devices

PI: Ann Blandford


CHI+MED (Computer-Human Interaction for Medical Devices) is an EPSRC-funded project to improve the safety of interactive (programmable) medical devices, such as infusion pumps. By understanding more about device design and human factors, medical errors can be reduced thus saving lives. Our goal is to learn more about medical devices and how people design, buy and use them in the real world. From this understanding we will investigate how to reduce the likelihood and consequences of human error. We are working with patients and their carers, nurses and other medical practitioners, manufacturers who create medical devices, NHS staff who purchase them and regulatory bodies who oversee patient safety.

In CHI+MED, we are studying the situated use of interactive medical devices, such as infusion pumps, home haemodialysis machines and vital signs monitors, in hospitals and homes. We are also developing new theoretical approaches, based on Distributed Cognition and Resilience Engineering, to the study of these devices.

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Sustainable Connected Cities

PI: Yvonne Rogers


To investigate how to enhance a diversity of sustainable city experiences we are developing new techniques that will be deployed ‘in-the-wild’ that can demonstrate how communities of people can be empowered in their cities through changing their practices. A series of in situ studies will be conducted to assess what are the competing and sometimes stressful demands on someone’s attention for activities in their everyday lives and how new kinds of information interventions can be provided at key points to help them make different choices without overwhelming them.  

More and more data is being collected in our cities. A challenge is to known how best to analyse, interpret and represent data to citizens that is meaningful to them and  that they can act upon.  We are interested in developing and applying new methods to personal, environmental and big data  to demonstrate how behaviour and practices can change both in the short- and long- term for the values people care about. Part of the research agenda will be to ‘scale up’ the in-the-wild methodology in order to tease out and explicate the different factors at play for different time periods (e.g., 1-2 weeks, 3-6 months, 1 year and more).

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Completed Projects

Healthy Interactive Systems: Resilient, Usable and Appropriate Systems in Healthcare

PIs: Ann Blandford and Harold Thimbleby

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The focus of this grant is on "Healthy Interactive Systems in Healthcare", and it is concerned with designing effective user interactions with a variety of systems in healthcare, from the mundane (e.g. infusion pumps) through information systems to novel technologies (e.g. for pain management).  Our current work covers a breadth of topics including projects investigating how videogames can be used to maintain the traditional boundaries between work and personal-life, and how to embed UCD methods in organizations developing Medical Information Technologies.

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Digital Epiphanies

PI: Anna Cox

The advances in technology in recent years have had many positive effects on the ways in which people can combine work and personal life. For example, being able to access email via a smartphone means that many can work from home, or work a flexible work pattern that successfully fits around caring responsibilities. However, the resulting "always-online" culture in which people expect almost instant responses to email messages, brings stresses and strains to those who feel under pressure to respond immediately and be available on a 24/7 basis.  This project will explore the impact of a range of digital technologies and practices on work-life balance across a range of individuals and households and whether existing technologies can be used to support and enable reflection on technological and work-life practices, and to bring about sustainable changes in practices

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Page last modified on 17 dec 14 13:55 by Rowanne Fleck