Designing empathic computers: The effect of multimodal empathic feedback using animated agent

Hien Nguyen, Judith Masthoff

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingPublished conference contribution

30 Citations (Scopus)


Experiencing emotional distress is the number one reason why people who are undergoing behaviour modification (e.g. quitting smoking, dieting) suffer from relapses. Providing emotional support is an effective way to help them overcome the unpleasant effects of negative affect and adhere to their regimen. Building computers with such ability has grabbed the attention of the HCI community in recent years. Early research has shown some promising results when adopting strategies of how we comfort others, but many questions on how to build such systems remain unanswered. This paper presents the results of a 2 (modality: animated vs. no visual) by 3 (intervention: non-empathy vs. empathy vs. empathy and expressivity) between-subjects study that investigates the impact of two important factors and their interaction in the design of such systems: (1) different ways of expressing empathy, and (2) the modality of delivering such content. Findings and implications for the design of empathic computer systems are discussed and directions for future research are suggested.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 4th International Conference on Persuasive Technology
Subtitle of host publication April 26-29, 2009, Claremont, California
Place of PublicationNew York
PublisherACM Press
Number of pages9
ISBN (Electronic)9781605583761
Publication statusPublished - 2009
EventInternational Conference on Persuasive Technology - Claremont, United States
Duration: 26 Apr 200929 Apr 2009

Publication series

NameICPS: ACM International Conference Proceeding Series
PublisherACM Press


ConferenceInternational Conference on Persuasive Technology
Country/TerritoryUnited States


Dive into the research topics of 'Designing empathic computers: The effect of multimodal empathic feedback using animated agent'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this