InExChange is comprised of a series of research studies and mixed-reality experienced designed to explore the impacts of shared physical sensation, such as the sensation of breath, through wearable devices.
Mixed reality experience (accepted to CHI '23)
InExChange is an interactive mixed reality experience centering around an inflatable vest which conveys a physical sense of shared breathing on the diaphragm between two or more participants. The experience is composed of three acts in which the participants' breaths are transformed into metaphorical projected representations: expansive waves, flowing light trails, and growing tree branches. The inflatable wearable devices physically enact in near real-time the inhale/exhale pattern of the other person's breath, varying in intensity level to create an attention interplay between the embodied sensation and the projection. Through this embodied sense of playful shared breathing, we aim to cultivate a genuine feeling of connection and contribute to the integration of somaesthetic design principles in mixed reality HCI.
Research study (ongoing, abstract accepted to journal)
Technologies on the body that require explicit awareness to be operated or monitored often risk disrupting human awareness and induce stress and excessive cognitive load. With the increasing interest in body-centric technologies, it is thus essential to understand how to build technologies that interface with human awareness without disrupting or requiring too many cognitive resources. In this paper, we build and evaluate a wearable system that uses different feedback types to alter human awareness (of the device). We further demonstrate how this awareness impacts cognitive load and sense of body-ownership and sense of agency, which are often essential antecedents to successful and continued use. In particular, we demonstrate how a wearable system that alters users’ breathing patterns can induce or disrupt awareness and consequently deliver or diminish a sense of body-ownership and agency over the system.