Body-Centric Computing

Steve Benford, Kristina Höök, Joseph Marshall, Floyd Mueller, Dag Svanes

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The rise of technology that can support the active human body – in contrast to the previously prevalent paradigm of interacting with computers while sitting still – such as wearables, quantified self systems and mobile computing highlights an opportunity for a new era of "body-centric computing". However, most work in this area has taken quite an instrumental perspective, focusing on achieving extrinsic performance objectives. Phenomenology, however, highlights that it is also important to support the experiential perspective of living an active life, that is, technology should also help people focus on their lived experiences and personal growth to deepen their understanding and engagement with their own bodies. We find that despite the work on embodiment, the use of technology to support the corporeal, pulsating and felt body has been notably absent. We believe the reason for this is due to limited knowledge about how to understand, analyse and correlate the vast amount of data from the various sensors worn by individuals and populations in real-time so that we can present it in a way that it supports people's felt experience. In order to drive such an agenda that supports both instrumental and experiential perspectives of the active human body, this seminar brings together leading experts, including those who are central to the development of products and ideas relating to wearables, mobile computing, quantified self, data analysis and visualization, exertion games and computer sports science. The goal is to address key questions around the use of sensor data to support both instrumental and experiential perspectives of the active human body and to jump-start collaborations between people from different backgrounds to pioneer new approaches for a body-centric computing future.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationGermany
PublisherSchloss Dagstuhl
Number of pages24
Publication statusPublished - 16 Mar 2018

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