Social Translucence: Using Minimalist Visualisations of Social Activity to Support Collective Interaction

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Abstract

As humans, we are fundamentally social creatures. From birth we orient to other people, and as we develop we acquire abilities for interacting with one another, ranging from expression and gesture through spoken and written language. As adults we are exquisitely sensitive to the actions and interactions of those around us. Every day we make countless decisions that are shaped by our social context. Whether it is wrapping up a talk when the audience starts fidgeting, or deciding to forgo the grocery shopping because the parking lot is jammed, social information provides a basis for inferences, planning and coordinating activity.