Workshops

 

Workshop: Interactive Assistants: How does their increasing ubiquity and intelligence impact users´ lives?

After several decades of developments and research that was mostly restricted to laboratories and academic realms, intelligent agents now finally they enter people´s homes. Autonomous systems using artificial intelligence (AI) to communicate with humans will soon be a part of everyday life. Systems like Siri, Alexa or Cortana can already be found in numerous households, enabling the whole family to operate home applications (e.g., switching on the light) or use the Internet (e.g., reading the weather forecast). Other applications (like companion agents for ambient assisted living or pedagogical agents) assist vulnerable groups such as the elderly in daily living or support learning in young children. Therefore, it is time to take a holistic look at the impact this has on people´s lives. It needs to be scrutinized how the emerging presence of intelligent artificial interaction partners influences human communication and relationships. There is an acute need to not only involve disciplines like computer science and psychology, but more broadly address ethics and law-related questions. Therefore, the workshop aims to bring together researchers who from different disciplinary perspectives want to contribute to analyzing the impact of the soon ubiquitous autonomous systems.

As intelligent interfaces and agents are now entering people´s homes, it is hugely relevant for the community to discuss the implications of ubiquitous dialogue with machines also considering ethics and law-related issues. The workshop therefore wants to provide a forum for related discussions and make the community aware of chances and pitfalls.

 

Workshop: 2nd workshop on Methodology and the Evaluation of Intelligent Virtual Agents

The aim of the 2nd workshop on methodology and evaluation is to critically but constructively discuss the empirical evaluation methods that are used in Human Computer Interaction, specifically in the area of Intelligent Virtual Agents. The social and life sciences are in a crisis of methodology as the results of many scientific studies are difficult or impossible to replicate in subsequent investigation (e.g. Pashler & Wagenmakers, 2012). The Open Science Collaboration (2015) observed, for example, that the effect size of replications was about half of the reported original effect size and that where 97% of the original studies had significant result, only 39% of the replication studies had significant results. In fact it has been suggested that more than 50% of psychological research results might be false (i.e. theories hold no or very low verisimilitude) (Ioannidis, 2005). Many of the methods employed by HCI researchers come from the fields that are currently in a replication crisis. Hence, do our studies have similar issues?

A workshop aimed at improving the quality of IVA research and methods should be welcomed by all IVA researchers. During the workshop we will discuss the methodological challenges identified in other fields and how they relate to the methods we use in our field. Additionally, we will discuss the proposed remedies and whether these are applicable for the research we conduct. We will discuss whether questions such as those posed above are relevant and, if so, how to go about answering them. This workshop is intended as a starting point and it will be the first of a series of workshops (at IVA and other conferences in the field) on this topic.

  

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