Research

My main research area is in Human Computer Interaction, with an emphasis on Social Computing. I am particularly interested in virtual worlds, computer games,  computer mediated communication and Internet of things technology.
game

Games and computer-mediated communication

Computers today not only mediate human communication, but also collaborative play and various social activities. My work in this area span across a number of key topics, including design issues, cognitive/interface studies and social interaction in virtual reality environment. I am keen to explore how game technologies can be used in “serious” application domains such as healthcare and well being. I have carried out research designing games for older people in care settings to improve life engagement, and investigating how game avatars can support mediated conflict resolutions among younger users. Together with colleagues in psychology, I have recently completed a study in the use of smart meters to motivate people to change their energy consumption pattern.

IoT

Sensing and Internet of things

I collaborate closely with researchers in electronic engineering to develop integrated hardware and software online systems with an aim to solve people’s and societal problems through smart technology. I have recently completed a project developing a tangible interface using RFID tag on day-to-day objects that allows people with dementia to immerse in a 3D virtual world for reminiscence. I am currently working on a project developing sensing device to detect plant’s well being for amateur urban farmers in collaboration with plant physiologist. I am also part of the Kent Speech and Swallowing Group, designing and developing low cost monitoring devices using skin-like sensors and 3D visualisation for biofeedback for Dysphagia therapy. A recent project involves collaboration with a Thai university designing low cost sensing devices for children for science education.

research

PhD project supervision

  • Completed: Panote Siriaraya (currently post doc at TU Delft, NL), Investigation of Virtual Worlds as a Platform to Support Healthy Ageing
  • Completed: Anthony Emeakaroha (currently deputy energy manager in NHS Medway), Analysis of Energy Conservation through product-integrated persuasive feedback using a smart sensor in a University Campus.
  • 2015 – present: Jittrapol Intarasirisawat (Royal Thai Government Scholar), Use of Eye tracking virtual reality for psychiatric care
  • 2015 – present: Deogratias Mzurikwao (Commonwealth Scholar), Skin-like sensors for aggression monitoring
  • 2015 – present: Luma Tabbaa, Virtual Reality and Empathy
  • 2015 – present: Boris Otkhmezuri, Virtual Reality Training for Psychological Wellbeing
  • 2015 – present: Maria Matsangidou (Kent VC scholarship), Virtual Reality Neurorehab and Pain Management
  • 2014 – present: Ben Nicholls (EPSRC funding), Skin-like EMG sensorss and 3D biofeedback for Dysphagia therapy.
  • 2013 – present: Pruet Pjorn (Royal Thai Government Scholar), Internet of Educational Things for Students in Rural Thailand

I am currently interested in supervising PhD projects in all the above areas, specifically in: a) Study, design and evaluation of novel virtual reality/augmented reality/gaming technology for positive social change and well being; b) Creative and innovative use of integrated hardware-software systems in various domains, with a focus on healthcare.