We propose an interactive handwriting assistance device, “Talkative Quill,” which provides verbal hints on the composition of Kanji characters. The pen-shaped device allows users to receive speech instructions while writing. We evaluate two factors inherent in the proposed concept: information presentation by speech and interaction with users from the writing tool itself. In our experiment, we consider the comparison conditions about the presentation method (speech, visual, or combined) and the device providing the information (pen or smart speaker). The result shows that users’active effort to recall the character forms is increased when guided by speech only, compared to when the correct character form is presented visually. However, no difference in user performance or perception was observed between the pen-assisted and smart-speaker-assisted situations. In this study, we discuss the value of tools having the ability to interact with users and provide insights for the design of tool-based conversational agents.
n general, it is very rare for an individual to carry a piano, and in concerts, the piano provided at the venue is often used. After the piano is delivered to the venue, it will change over time as it is placed in various environments, and consumable parts will deteriorate, resulting in changes in timbre and touch. For this reason, the pianos in the hall are not always kept in the same condition, and not all of them are kept in good condition depending on the location and management method. This study used three types of pianos, and analyzed and considered performance recordings and questionnaire surveys. Among them, we analyzed the items that showed individual differences, such as the sound desired by the performers and the feeling of the keyboard, and clarified the items that showed individual differences and those that did not, based on statistical analysis. In addition, after sorting out the viewpoints based on the presence or absence of individual differences, a detailed analysis including free-form comments was conducted, and the actual conditions of what characteristics players emphasized regarding the state of the piano were investigated.
This study aims to elucidate the relationship between communication and learning outcomes during group work, a learning modality associated with active learning. Hence, we examined the interplay between learning outcomes, activity level, subjective assessment of communication, and linguistic aspects-such as parts of speech, speech acts, and intricate body movements. The findings uncovered that learning outcomes were attainable in scenarios characterized by heightened response utterances, exemplified by affirmations such as “yes” accompanied by concomitant nodding gestures. Furthermore, increased learner engagement was observed in response to explicit, content-focused explanations, supplemented by illustrative gestures from the speaker’s hand. Additionally, subjective communication appraisal was increased, resulting in enhanced group work.
To bolster dialogue and enhance satisfaction within group dialogue, an exploration into the characteristics of dialogue was undertaken, particularly in the context of co-creative dialogues. A group of four individuals engaged in co-creative dialogues encompassing three distinct phases: episode sharing, ideation, and consensus building. Data from 17 such groups were collected. Alongside audio recordings of participants' dialogue, a questionnaire survey gauged satisfaction levels regarding dialogue quality, output satisfaction, relationship development, and overall dialogue satisfaction. The findings revealed that heightened satisfaction with the dialogue process correlated with increased satisfaction regarding the outcomes achieved and the strength of interpersonal relationships among participants. Additionally, a positive correlation was observed solely within the consensus-building phase, where a higher degree of relationship development corresponded to greater uniformity in utterance. The study also highlighted the need for tailored dialogue support based on the nature of the discourse, emphasizing the importance of augmenting both outcome satisfaction and participant interconnections to enhance the overall dialogue experience.
In this paper, based on the implementation of a dialogue workshop utilizing pattern language for caregiving staff, analyzing the effects, and identifying the factors contributing to these effects, we propose the use of pattern language as a means to facilitate high-quality communication in the field of elderly care. A workshop was conducted using pattern language for practices of geriatric care with 76 caregiving staff from 17 facilities in elderly care settings. We aimed to explore which elements of the patterns, whether derived from the verbalization of the patterns or the reading of the pattern contents, contributed to the observed effects, and whether the effects were a result of individual reflection or dialogue with others. The findings suggest that pattern language, articulating both “how to do the practice effectively” and “what is important,” provides participants with insights and learning. Additionally, in dialogues using pattern language, the effects go beyond educational impacts derived from the content of the pattern cards, extending to diverse learning from others and contributing to team building.
In this study, we propose a method to automatically acquire reactions from users’ face images, convert them into emojis, and share them with the cursor position in an online creative meeting using an online whiteboard. The proposed method uses emojis, which require a smaller display area than video, and can communicate non-verbal information without the need for intentional manipulation, as is the case with existing reaction button-based methods. We conducted a comparison experiment between the proposed method, an existing method using reaction buttons, and a method using video. The results showed that the proposed method shared more reactions than the existing method, the satisfaction with the meeting was higher with the proposed method than with the existing method, and there was no significant difference between the proposed method and the video. Based on the experimental results and the opinions obtained from the semi-structured interviews, the effectiveness and limitations of the proposed method were verified, and guidelines for future improvements were identified.
In order to cultivate an attitude that respects cultural diversity from an early age, intercultural communication by children using machine translation is being conducted. In recent years, translation accuracy has significantly improved thanks to neural machine translation, leading to smoother mutual understanding among children. However, the number of utterances from children in low-resource languages, or languages with limited linguistic resources, remains lower compared to other children. Therefore, this study focuses on the facilitators ’conversational behaviors as factors besides translation accuracy and analyzes the facilitators ’conversational behaviors that contribute to creating an environment in which children in low-resource languages feel comfortable speaking. Specifically, we annotated utterance acts in multilingual conversation logs collected in the field and performed a statistical analysis to detect significant differences in the number of responses between utterance acts for each native language and between native languages for each utterance act. Furthermore, we compared the utterance acts before and after translation for each translation pair and analyzed the trends in utterance act changes. As a result, this study reveals that machine translation does not effectively encourage the utterance of low-resource language children, as the listener may misunderstand the speaker’s intention by interpreting the utterance act differently than intended.
Improving the quality of childcare and therapeutic intervention requires enhancing the skills of workers. To address this, we have developed a tool for on-site workers in child education facilities to reflect on their activities. Specifically, we created the VisRef system, an assistive tool for video reflection using smartphones and smartwatches, and conducted practical experiments. In this system, workers wear a smartwatch and press a button on the screen when they encounter moments they want to review, recording the preceding few minutes of video. The button press alters tags of the record and allows the addition of text memos through voice recognition. These records are immediately posted on a chat system and shared with stakeholders. We conducted empirical experiments utilizing the system in Japanese daycare services for children requiring support (afterschool care services) and a nursery school. Through surveys and interviews, we examined whether the system contributes to enhancing on-site activities. The results demonstrated that the system aids in gaining deeper insights into children and helps workers reconsider their actions, which may lead to effective improvement in their performance.
The authors aimed to support the reflection and the generation of educational communication regarding "learning" and "career paths" using the pre-developed "Pattern Language for Learning Architecture" among second-year students studying architecture at two technical colleges, including both four-year and two-year programs. A one-day workshop was conducted using the pattern language, focusing on "learning" for the four-year program and "career paths" for the two-year program. The pre- and post-workshop questionnaires were administered, and the responses were analyzed to assess changes in the numerical values of the responses. Furthermore, free-text responses from the post-workshop open-ended section were subjected to quantitative content analysis. The findings revealed that the pattern language workshop facilitated the reflection and the generation of communication on "learning" and "career paths." Additionally, student outputs created during the workshop, such as learning sheets and career paths sheets, were evaluated using a rubric. It was evident that students who clarified their thoughts on their learning and career paths through the workshop, as evidenced by their outputs, benefited from the workshop, which utilized the pattern language in the form of cards.
This paper focuses on interpersonal distance as a form of non-verbal communication, and proposes a method using RTK-GNSS as a method for measuring interpersonal distance in children’s outdoor play for use in developmental support therapy for children with autism spectrum disorder. Preliminary distance measurement experiments using the proposed method showed its practical feasibility, and measurement experiments were conducted with typically developing children. The experimental results showed that the proposed method has practical feasibility, since the results of the experimental measurements showed a trend consistent with the observations by experts, similar to the Observetion method.
Remote-type autonomous driving is being introduced as a mechanism to ensure the imperfection of autonomous driving systems, since these systems can only run automatically under pre-designed conditions. In remote-type autonomous driving, a human operator at a distance from an autonomous vehicle monitors the vehicle status using a teleoperation system and operates the vehicle. In this study, we target the situation in which multiple autonomous vehicles cannot continue to drive themselves at the same time and a single operator is required to operate them continuously to recover from the situation. The experiment is conducted to verify human error and work efficiency issues with a driving simulator. In addition, the influence of the characteristics of the vehicle situation on the restoration operation is investigated. As a result, although no issues related to human error are identified, it is suggested that road surface markings may have an impact on work efficiency in these operations. Furthermore, we confirm that the difficulty of recovery operations tends to increase when the factors that the autonomous driving system stops are not displayed as images from the onboard camera.
Smartphones and tablets, equipped with touch screens, have revolutionized the way consumers interact with products during online shopping. Touching physical products in stores affects the consumer experience and product evaluation, resulting in an inference of similar effects when touching products through digital devices. However, interacting with products digitally does not always involve the fingers touching the images of a product through a screen; this differs from touching objects physically. This study compared the effects of touch on product evaluation between touching products directly by placing a finger on product images and touching products indirectly using a virtual joystick displayed on a screen. The findings showed that direct touch increases psychological ownership levels, shopping enjoyment, and touch sense than indirect touch. However, the endowment effect was not significantly different. This study also examined the effects of touch on preference through a two-alternative forced choice task between items involving direct and indirect touch conditions. The results showed that items touched directly were chosen more frequently, thereby suggesting increased preference levels for items through direct touch. These results suggest that forms of interactive contact with objects using a touch screen affect user experience and object valuation.
Dialogue with an artificial agent, such as a robot, can help users reflect on and revise their own thinking. In this research, we developed a novel protocol for dialoguing with a robot to improve users' critical thinking (CT) skills and investigated its effectiveness. This "CT dialogue protocol" allows participants to consider their own opinions from alternative perspectives and to use CT skills. Study 1 examined the efficacy of this protocol by comparing two groups: one engaged in the CT dialogue protocol and the other engaged in dialogues based on simple questions. The results showed that only the group using the CT dialogue protocol showed a significant improvement in CT skills. Study 2 examined whether the effects of the CT dialogue protocol varied with the dialogue setting by comparing two groups: one engaged in online dialogue using a web conferencing system and the other engaged in face-to-face dialogue. The results showed that the online dialogue group showed an improvement in CT skills. Overall, these results suggest that the CT dialogue protocol, especially when implemented in an online environment with a robot as the dialogue partner, is effective in improving users' CT skills.
In this study, we evaluate the effects of multiple mental states on the results of cognitive function tasks under a non-strictly controlled situation, as in the case of self-measurement. We conduct experiments using the N-back task and computational task as the load task and confirm that the correlation between the results of the N-back task and the subjective values of arousal, drowsiness, concentration, and stress are significant. In addition, the correlation between the results of the computational task and the objective value of drowsiness is between 0.4 and 0.6. We confirm that the results vary depending on the change in the mental state, such as the decrease in concentration or the increase in drowsiness. These results suggest that it is difficult to determine whether the low score on the task test is due to a lack of concentration or a decline in the cognitive function itself. This study indicates that when the task results are to be used for cognitive health checks etc., if the task is performed under an environment that is difficult to control, the mental states of the subject need to be considered for the correct interpretation of task results.