Research Lines

My academic and research vocation is to explore and demonstrate how HCI as a field of applied enquiry can contribute to building a more inclusive society. Working in  STEM education (Science, Technology,  Engineer and Mathematics) projects for children and how to evaluate the user experience in children with/without special needs. However, today the interaction with robots are being of interest in research, where social robots are being used for children, specially children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), which can support the assistive therapy to help to the child with ASD to understand and teach the emotions.

Human-Computer Interaction

HCI is related to  design, implementation and evaluation of interactive systems users centered, which it can support a people that can carry out  their activities.

The term human is related to one or more individuals who have a profile specific, with common characteristics. The term computer is related not only with the computer, also others systems as mobile devices, a embebed system or systems that do not necessarily include digital systems. Finally, the term interaction is related with the dialogue stablished between human and computer, using input/output devices traditional or not traditional.

Today, i was working on the interactive systems design centered for people with special needs. One of the concepts we include in the design of these systems, is establish an interaction metaphor  that has relationship in the context and need of the individual. When working with children with special needs, a greater challenge is how evaluate the user experience and usability with this group of children, more when they have a language level low. Therefore, they resorted to make to use some usability  techniques related with direct observation and drawing intervention and others, which  have been adapted for children with special needs according his impairment or disorder, so instruments to apply can change.

From this concern in how to evaluate the user experience in a group of children that they have some disability or disorder, work has been started in how measure emotions in a more objective and quantitative way.  Because evaluations standard are very subjectives. Therefore, we have begun to work bio-signals or signals physiological from a concept of user experience that is related to know perceptions and feelings of  user.

On HCI is UX, which is related to capture  the perceptions and emotions of the user when he/she interacts with a system. Therefore, emotions are related with UX. There are different ways to capture emotions on the user’s  to evaluate the user experience. On another hand, emotions with artificial intelligence is related with the term affective computing.

  • Affective Computing

It is the study and development of systems and devices that can recognize, interpret, process and stimulate human emotions. It is a field that involves several areas, as: science, psychology, and cognitive science of the computing.

The term appeared with Dra Rosalind Picard, teacher of the MIT, who give to the term affective computing. We are working in how to recognize emotional state of  user, so that according to it the system can adapt behaviors according emotion states.

The technologies that involve affective computing, is to perceive the emotional state of one user. Emotions in an user can manifest in three ways: physiological, cognitive and expressions (facial or verbal). Therefore, to capture the physiological signals are used the biomedical sensors as: rate heart, Galvanic Skin Response, corporal temperature, breath, among others. To capture cognitive signals is used neuronal signals, using a technique called EEG to capture brain activity, it is involved from the neuroscience.

The recognition of an emotional state requires the processing of digital signals and capture of significant data that allow the use of automatic learning techniques. In addition, affective computing is being worked with social robots.