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Effects of Avatar Cuteness on Users’ Perceptions of System Errors in Anthropomorphic Interfaces

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HCI in Business, Government and Organizations (HCII 2020)

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Abstract

Anthropomorphic design has been widely used in human-computer interactions. Anchored on the baby schema (Kindchenschema) theory, we propose that integrating cuteness elements in an anthropomorphic system can significantly alleviate the users’ negative perceptions of system errors. The results of a laboratory experiment reveal that avatar cuteness can significantly reduce users’ perceived severity of software errors taking place during human-computer interactions. This study not only explores the factor of avatar age in anthropomorphic interface design, but it also introduces the concept of cuteness into HCI research. Practical implications of these findings for human-computer interface design are discussed.

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Notes

  1. 1.

    Nenkov and Scott (2014) propose two distinctive dimensions of cuteness, namely baby schema cuteness and whimsical cuteness, which is characterized by “capricious humor and playful disposition”. In this paper, cuteness refers to the baby schema cuteness only.

  2. 2.

    The font selected is “SimSun”, which is similar to the “Times New Roman” font in English.

  3. 3.

    The font selected is “HanYiQingKong”, which is similar to the “Comic Sans” font in English.

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Cheng, Y., Qiu, L., Pang, J. (2020). Effects of Avatar Cuteness on Users’ Perceptions of System Errors in Anthropomorphic Interfaces. In: Nah, FH., Siau, K. (eds) HCI in Business, Government and Organizations. HCII 2020. Lecture Notes in Computer Science(), vol 12204. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-50341-3_25

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-50341-3_25

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