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Embodied Technology: Human Machine Communication from the Media Arts Perspective

  • Author(s): Wolfe, Hannah E.
  • Advisor(s): Kuchera-Morin, JoAnn
  • Peljhan, Marko
  • et al.
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This dissertation is the study of a series of media art installations that deal with embodied technology which allows humans to interact with computers in different contexts. It explores the social effects of ubiquitous technology and the role for embodied media arts as a critique of interactive digital technologies which are replacing physically present forms of communication with our environment and with each other. In these works I examined the affordances of different physical spaces and observed how the social dynamics were affected. To probe these systems, I am using affective computing (computational expression of emotion) and tangible computing (objects with computational power). Intimate spaces allow for the ability to touch and to hold technology. Here the emotive haptic and emotive sonic response of a robot changed the way that people interacted with and viewed the robot and each other. Whether someone was directly interacting with the robot or simply observing drastically changed the emotion they thought the robot was expressing. Social spaces allow for the ability to interact interpersonally with technology. I explore how interactions change when they are embodied and public, while examining gender roles, female agency, and the line between human and machine. Interactive environments allow for movement and for multiple people interacting with large amounts of information and therefore each other. Personal mobile technology, multimodal interfaces, and distributed interfaces were used to allow multiple people to interact with the system and each other. Through these works, I show that media artworks, which embody technology and give it emotive qualities, critique the way that technology is used and change the way that people interact with it.

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This item is under embargo until February 7, 2022.