Collaboration CUO and Social Spaces

Posted by David Geerts on Monday April 27th 2015 at 09:44

Dear all,

From now on, we will continue our fruitful collaboration as separate research groups instead of one joint research group. Therefore:

- if you are interested in research group CUO and its activities, we would like to refer you to

- if you are interested in research group Social Spaces and its activities, we would like to refer you to:

Thank you,

The researchers of CUO and Social Spaces

CUO | Social Spaces presenting at CHI2015 in Seoul

Posted by David Geerts on Friday April 3rd 2015 at 11:35

Several researchers from CUO | Social Spaces will be presenting their work in Seoul from 18-23 April at this year’s CHI2015, the world’s leading conference on Human Computer Interaction. Five submissions were accepted for the very competitive Papers and Notes track, which has an acceptance rate of 23%. Furthermore two works-in-progress will be presented as a poster, as well as several workshop contributions. On top of that, Rob van Roy will be helping out at the conference as Student Volunteer.

Here is the full list of accepted Papers, Notes and Works-in-Progress from CUO | Social Spaces (the full conference program can be found on the CHI2015 website):

TUIkit: Evaluating Physical and Functional Experiences of Tangible User Interface Prototypes (Jorick Vissers & David Geerts)

This paper describes TUIkit, a new method for evaluating both physical and functional experiences of users with early TUI prototypes. By means of a study to evaluate interactive dice prototypes, TUIkit’s appropriateness for tracing the effect of different physical attributes (e.g. shape, size, weight, material, texture) on the functional and thus overall user experience was investigated. The results show that separating physical and functional experiences first and joining these afterwards, enhanced the evaluation of TUI prototypes. By applying this approach, participants became more aware of how they physically experienced the prototypes, rather than focusing solely on the functional value of the prototypes. This awareness supports earlier studies that suggest that TUIs consist of more than just interaction, and that form and materiality has a strong impact on their user experience. Finally, we suggest some future adjustments of the TUIkit method.

Multimodal Analysis in Participatory Design with Children: A Primary School Case Study (Jan DerbovenMaarten Van MechelenKarin Slegers)

We describe a multimodal method for the analysis of co-design outcomes in participatory design (PD) with children. The multimodal approach we take allows researchers to treat both verbal (notes, writings) and tangible material out-comes as complementary ways of communicating design ideas. We argue that an integrated approach in which both PD outcomes are compared and contrasted can result in a richer analysis, in which underlying values can be identified more clearly. To illustrate the method, we describe a PD process with primary school children.

The Fun-Serious Ambiguity in Educational Games (Jan Derboven, Bieke Zaman, Jorick Vissers, David Geerts, Dirk De Grooff)

We describe a study of Monkey Tales, an educational game targeted at primary school children. Starting from the assumption that all meaning is socially constructed, we focus our attention on the way an educational game, and its balance between fun and serious aspects, is constructed in public texts (game manufacturer’s communication and game reviews) and in individual use (the way players and their parents talk about the game). Through an analysis of public texts and individual use, we show how the balance between the fun and the serious in Monkey Tales is constructed in different ways.

Controlling In-The-Wild Evaluation Studies (Sandy Claes, Niels Wouters, Karin Slegers, Andrew Vande Moere)

In this paper, we investigate the potential of controlled in-the-wild studies as an evaluation methodology that merges the benefits of lab-based and in-the-wild studies. Our exploratory investigation builds upon a comparative, between subject experiment benchmarking different interaction features of a custom public installation that visualized a series of urban datasets. In order to evaluate the usefulness of the in-the-wild versus the controlled in-the-wild methodologies, we compared the resulting findings in terms of participant engagement, insight generation, and social interaction. We propose that a controlled in-the-wild study offers a viable alternative when evaluating more complex interaction methods in public space, hereby potentially reducing the practical efforts of in-the-wild studies to involve participants.

Using Game Principles in UX Research: A Board Game for Eliciting Future User Needs (Karin Slegers, Sanne Ruelens, Jorick Vissers, Pieter Duysburgh)

This paper presents a board game approach as a UX research technique to assess potential user experiences regarding a future product. It discusses how the use of a board game may provide a) a safe research environment in which participants feel comfortable to share their thoughts and experiences in a group setting, and b) a tool to facilitate users to think about their needs regarding a future product. The use of the board game approach is illustrated by a case study in the context of developing a new train information system. The design of the board game that was used is described in detail, as well as how the game was used to elicit potential future experiences. A survey amongst the participants showed that the board game was appreciated as a surprising, pleasant and ‘safe’ research method.

Work in Progress

Duysburgh, Pieter, Slegers, K., Mouws, Karen, Nouwen, M. (2015). Playful Sounds From The Classroom: What Can Designers of Digital Music Games Learn From Formal Educators?. ACM SIGCHI Conf. on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI’15), Seoul, South Korea: ACM.

Claes, Sandy , Coenen, Jorgos , Slegers, K. & Andrew Vande Moere (2015). Design Implications of a Casual Health Visualization on Tangible Displays. ACM SIGCHI Conf. on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI’15). Seoul, South Korea: ACM.

Is het Internet of Things wel altijd het antwoord?

Posted by Arne Jansen on Friday April 3rd 2015 at 11:13

iMinds onderzoekers Jonathan Huyghe en Arne Jansen (CUO | Social Spaces – iMinds/KU Leuven) vinden van niet en leggen uit waarom in een interview voor Proximus One Magazine.

Als onderzoekers aan het Centrum voor User eXperience Onderzoek met een uitgesproken interesse voor het Internet of Things (IoT), zien Jonathan en Arne een aantal goede voorbeelden, maar ook minder goede voorbeelden. Ze halen een paar belangrijke factoren aan waar we op moeten letten bij het ontwikkelen van IoT-toepassingen, zoals privacy en agency. Soms lijkt het alsof men gewoon een IoT-sausje giet over bestaande producten, om mee te zijn met de nieuwste trend.

Het Human-Centred Design principe indachtig, benadrukken Jonathan en Arne hoe belangrijk het is om op zoek te gaan naar de toegevoegde waarde die het Internet of Things kan bieden. Een IoT-sausje moet met andere woorden gepaard gaan met een relevante, nieuwe of verbeterde ervaring voor de gebruikers. Het betrekken van die (potentiële) gebruikers in het ontwerp van IoT-toepassingen kan daarbij zeker helpen!

Het interview en de andere artikels in het dossier over het Internet of Things lees je hier:

Games as a research method

Posted by Karin Slegers on Tuesday March 31st 2015 at 15:12
Processed with VSCOcam with m5 presetGamification is quite a hot topic in ICT development at the moment. Game elements are increasingly seen as a useful design approach to make everyday tasks or work-related activities more fun and to improve the user experience.


In the TraPIST project, we (together with our iMinds-SMIT colleagues at VUB) have used a similar approach to spice up our research. We created a board game that was used in one of our studies to gather insights into train passengers’ needs regarding the train information system we are developing in this project. More specifically, we wanted to understand what kind of questions passengers would ask if they would have access to an omniscient information system that would go way beyond existing train apps.


For this study we took inspiration from several game principles used in existing board games. The board itself was based on the Game of Life, with a track of squares representing a journey from home to destination. As in the Game of the Goose, we used penalty squares. Landing on such a square would cause participants to skip a turn due to a delay. Similar to Monopoly, we used event cards representing real life problems that passengers may encounter during their trip (e.g. unannounced delays, a flat bike tire, bad weather, …).


During the game, players could ask questions to a mock-up of the TraPIST train information system. They could type their questions on a tablet and the system (that was in fact operated by a researcher in another room, Wizard-of-Oz style) would answer their questions.


Our main objective was to gain an understanding of the kind of questions passengers would ask to the TraPIST system, which worked quite well in this game setting. Being in a fictitious, but familiar, train travel context helped our participants to think about what it would be like to use a non-existent future application. Adding game elements to the study made participation fun and lowered the threshold for participants to speak their minds.


We will definitely use game elements in our research again, as we felt this approach was quite successful. We will present our TraPIST board game at CHI in Seoul in April.
Screen Shot 2015-03-31 at 16.04.30

Studio Media – iMinds

Posted by Jeroen Vanattenhoven on Monday March 30th 2015 at 15:02

Hoe kan digitale innovatie een antwoord bieden op de uitdagingen voor het Vlaamse medialandschap? En welke mediadomeinen zijn essentieel voor een sterke, toekomstgerichte markt?

Studio Media biedt je kennis en inzichten in de vele deelfacetten van de mediatoekomst. De digitale collectie van meer dan 50 artikels vond zijn oorsprong in de markt zelf, toen 45 mediavertegenwoordigers in oktober 2014 een open dialoog aangingen tijdens iMinds The Conference. Ruim 20 iMinds onderzoekers, waaronder Jeroen Vanattenhoven en David Geerts van CUO | SocialSpaces, zochten in hun artikels kruisbestuiving en toekomstperspectieven op, geclusterd rond zes sleuteldomeinen: Advertising, Analytics, Content, Ecosysteem, Gebruikers en Innovatie.

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