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This study looks at how 'pervasive' or 'ubiquitous' modes of computing (those built into the environment and/or disguised, as opposed to conventional computer monitors and keyboards) affect the experience of shyness in three social contexts. In particular, we are interested in whether people using these kinds of computers feel more visible or exposed, and how this affects their behaviour. We will then design new devices to tackle these effects and make the experience more comfortable for users, with the aim of increasing social participation in the relevant activities. We aim to gather data from self-defined 'shy' users in each setting, using feedback questionnaires and non-participant observation.

The research will run over three years and incorporate three mini-projects:

1. class participation (university seminars, lectures and laboratory workshops) - Informatics SoftSys group
2. social networking sites (conferences, websites, university Freshers' Week activities) - Informatics Interact group
3. public interactive artworks (art galleries with interactive displays) - Sociology

Find out more about the project here:
http://www.informatics.sussex.ac.uk/research/projects/shyness/tiki-index.php
 
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