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Title: Bridging the gap between physical and digital worlds through physical and contextual anchors
Author: Lund , Kate Joanne
Awarding Body: Lancaster University
Current Institution: Lancaster University
Date of Award: 2012
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This research documents the development of three novel mobile applications and the subsequent user experiences observed during the deployment of these applications using an 'in the wild' methodology. These experiences were aimed at evaluating the use of anchors that help to bridge the gap between digital and tangible. Two distinct avenues of interest are explored, firstly an investigation was carried out into the use of a physical anchor (an ambient device); and then progresses on to review more contextual anchors that manifest from the use of location, environmental, spatial and temporal data, with the intention this will positively impact the participant experience. The first application was designed to encourage novel interactions between the user and a physical anchor via the use of a mobile phone. The aim here was to identify the patterns in user behaviour when communicating in this way. The key finding of this research was that unanticipated interactions developed, especially regarding how the evolving nature of how the device was used. Based upon the observed emergent behaviour in the first project, the research progresses to document how users interact with more contextual anchors through two location based games. These games were inspired by existing location based experiences, such as Geocaching, and sought to encourage emergent behaviour by providing the user with a format that was flexible enough for them to fonn their own interpretations of how it should be played. The major findings here focus upon participation inequality, and the approach of using context to fonn a games rule-set being a facilitator in encouraging emergent behaviour.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available