Thursday, July 16, 2009

SOUPS 2009 Best Paper Award Goes to "Ubiquitous Systems and the Family: Thoughts about the Networked Home"

Often, futuristic shopping scenarios highlight ways in which a network of computers are able to determine the items a consumer needs by intelligently surveying food stocks and other goods in the individuals home. However, as Friedewald and colleagues note, such scenarios tend to take an individualistic approach, ignoring the ways in which the various interests within a family may converge or conflict within a shopping expidition. In many families, shopping is considered a social activity where all family members might take part in the process. Younger members of a family (seldom seen in the ubicomp world) are typically active participants in the weekly shopping task, and are given their own responsibilities or activities. Linda Little, Elizabeth Sillence and Pam Briggs, Ubiquitous Systems and the Family: Thoughts about the Networked Home

SOUPS 2009 Best Paper Award Goes to "Ubiquitous Systems and the Family: Thoughts about the Networked Home"

Andrew Patrick and Simson Garfinkel, SOUPS Technical Papers Co-Chairs, announced SOUPS 2009 Best Paper Award has been bestowed on Ubiquitous Systems and the Family: Thoughts about the Networked Home by Linda Little, Elizabeth Sillence and Pam Briggs of the PaCT Lab, Northumbria University (U.K.).

Here are brief excerpts from the award-winning paper followed by a link to full text:

Developments in ubiquitous and pervasive computing herald a future in which computation is embedded into our daily lives. Such a vision raises important questions about how people, especially families, will be able to engage with and trust such systems whilst maintaining privacy and individual boundaries. To begin to address such issues, we have recently conducted a wide reaching study eliciting trust, privacy and identity concerns about pervasive computing. Over three hundred UK citizens participated in 38 focus groups. The groups were shown Videotaped Activity Scenarios [11] depicting pervasive or ubiquitous computing applications in a number of contexts including shopping. The data raises a number of important issues from a family perspective in terms of access, control, responsibility, benefit and complexity. Also findings highlight the conflict between increased functionality and the subtle social interactions that sustain family bonds. We present a Pre-Concept Evaluation Tool (PRECET) for use in design and implementation of ubicomp systems."

The design and implementation of ubiquitous systems cannot be solely based on traditional HCI issues of functionality, usability and accessibility. In a shopping context at least ubicomp systems need to incorporate a better understanding of family interactions and need to show some sensitivities to the natural information sharing boundaries that occur within the family. Such an approach will resonate with developments in other technologies, where the focus on ‘user-experience’ as opposed to ‘usability’ has seen a shift towards an understanding of the wider social impacts of HCI.

Ubiquitous Systems and the Family: Thoughts about the Networked Home, Linda Little, Elizabeth Sillence and Pam Briggs, PaCT Lab, Northumbria University, U.K.

Some Related Posts:

SOUPS 2009 Tutorial Explores Challenges of Evaluating Usable Security and Privacy Technology

CyLab Seminar Series Notes: User-Controllable Security and Privacy -- Norman Sadeh asks, "Are Expectations Realistic?"

CyLab Research Update: Locaccino Enables the Watched to Watch the Watchers

CyLab Chronicles: Wombat, the Latest CyLab Success Story

CyLab Chronicles: Q&A w/ Norman Sadeh

CyLab Chronicles: Q&A w/ Lorrie Cranor

Culture of Security: CUPS Research Takes on Both Widespread Attack Method & Dangerous Meme (Available to Cylab Partners Only)

For further commentary on SOUPS 2009, go to the CUPS Blog.

-- Richard Power''