User Reactions to Anthropomorphized Interfaces

Tomoko KODA  

Publication
IEICE TRANSACTIONS on Information and Systems   Vol.E86-D   No.8   pp.1369-1377
Publication Date: 2003/08/01
Online ISSN: 
DOI: 
Print ISSN: 0916-8532
Type of Manuscript: Special Section PAPER (Special Issue on Software Agent and Its Applications)
Category: 
Keyword: 
agent,  anthropomorphism,  facial expression,  user interface design,  emotion,  

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Summary: 
It is still an open question whether software agents should be personified in the interface. In order to study the effects of faces and facial expressions in the interface, a series of experiments was conducted to compare subjects' responses to and evaluation of different faces and facial expressions. The experimental results obtained demonstrate that: 1) personified interfaces help users engage in a task, and are well suited for an entertainment domain; 2) people's impressions of a face in a task are different from ones of the face in isolation. Perceived intelligence of a face is determined not by the agent's appearance but by its competence; 3) there is a dichotomy between user groups which have opposite opinions about personification. Thus, agent-based interfaces should be flexible to support the diversity of users' preferences and the nature of tasks.