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Exploring Interaction Design for the Social Internet of Things

Part of the Internet of Things book series (ITTCC)


The Social Internet of Things (SIoT) builds social capital by incorporating principles of Social Networks (SNs) into the design of the Internet of Things (IoT). With the ambition of improving network navigability and service availability, research targets granting smart objects the ability to autonomously socialize with each other. The resulting independently defined social network for things will allow devices to communicate with both human beings as well as other devices. Autonomous decisions made by social things require them to understand the context in which they operate. However, the perception and interpretation of context remains fallible. As social things act without explicitly making this visible to the user, there is an increasing inability to grasp, let alone control, what is happening behind the screens. By providing intelligibility or defining personalities, the user gains a better awareness of the system’s functionality. In this chapter, we start by providing a short history of things that socialize and review related research. By gaining insights into the nature of interaction with both the world and autonomous systems, we frame interaction challenges with social things. We look towards literature in both the SIoT and context-aware computing to outline possible design techniques for addressing these challenges. Lastly, we discuss how future work can build upon our considerations to ensure natural and intuitive interaction with the SIoT.


  • Social Internet Of Things (SIoT)
  • Autonomous Socialization
  • Smart Objects
  • General Cyber-physical Systems
  • Social Networking Paradigms

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  • DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-94659-7_5
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Fig. 1

(Reprinted from [4], with permission from Elsevier)

Fig. 2

(Adapted from [31] with permission)

Fig. 3

Image from [46] reused with permission (Copyright 2014   Jo Vermeulen)

Fig. 4

(From [44] 2016 Association for Computing Machinery, Inc. Reprinted by permission.)

Fig. 5


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This work is part of the DISTRO project which is funded from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No 642841.

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Degraen, D. (2019). Exploring Interaction Design for the Social Internet of Things. In: Soro, A., Brereton, M., Roe, P. (eds) Social Internet of Things. Internet of Things. Springer, Cham.

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