Mary Czerwinski, Microsoft
"Emotion Tracking for Memory, Health and Awareness"

Tuesday, December 4, 2012 at 11am
2119 Hornbake Building, South Wing, University of Maryland-College Park

In this talk a novel system we designed that allows users to reflect upon
their moods while doing desktop computing activities and other daily
events will be described. We surveyed potential users of such a system to
see what they remembered about their mood swings and behavioral patterns
emotionally over time, and it was clear that they felt they did not have a
good handle on this after even 48 hours. We then built AffectAura to help
users track their moods, and tested our system on six users over a week of
time. The results were promising. Users found interesting patterns in the
data and gave us great feedback on how to evolve the user interface
visualization for real time feedback on emotional reactions, mood swings
and activities. Now we are building systems and applications that perform
mood detection in real time using mobile technology. We are exploring
novel user interface ideas to help users reflect on and manage their
affective experiences. Many questions remain from our work on AffectAura,
in terms of how useful a system like this would be over the long term and
how valuable a mobile tracking system might be in real time (especially
given the likelihood of misclassifications). In addition, we also are
interested in user interface ≥intervention≤ styles that can be used when
negative or disruptive emotions are detected, whether in a car, at the
desktop, or while mobile. Finally, we feel there is a huge opportunity in
the remote familial space, or in a close social network, where knowing
about the emotional health of separated loved ones or close friends comes
in to play. These new research areas are tightly coupled to privacy
issues. A few examples of applications in some of these new areas will be

Mary Czerwinski's research focuses primarily on emotion tracking,
information worker task management, multitasking, and awareness systems
for individuals and groups. Her background is in visual attention and
multitasking. She holds a Ph.D. in Cognitive Psychology from Indiana
University in Bloomington. Mary was awarded the ACM SIGCHI Lifetime
Service Award, was inducted into the CHI Academy, and became an ACM
Distinguished Scientist in 2010.