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Always-On + Adoption – a method for longitudinal studies

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We will discuss an approach for conducting long term studies of companionship technologies – technologies intended for more intimate relationships with people. We draw from our work of conducting several qualitative long-term user studies of people’s relationship with robotic companions and mobile devices in order to develop a methodology where the initial bond with the artifact is based on a more intense experience. After this initial phase referred to as Always On the relationship will fade over to the adoption phase where the more traditional long-term use can be studied. Most recently we are trying out this approach for studying people’s experience of an online social game that features virtual agents.

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