In today’s meeting we began by discussing how the blog should be used as a communication and reflection tool as part of my PHD. Together, we agreed that it had the potential to help us all to keep track of the progression of the project more easily. It is also a good way to keep all the documents, papers and dates in one place. Marian suggested that to get the best use out of the blog I should add a section with key dates (when I am planning to visit the university and when I have key meetings and studies). It should also give all my supervisors access to the blog so they can make edits should they need to and also to the university office.

Following this initial discussion we went on to talk about the ethics proforma that I drafted up. Janet questioned whether a questionnaire is the best tool for evaluating how the participants interact with the devices. She said that a questionnaire would confine the responses and wouldn’t pick up the nuances of the user experience. A much better idea would be to conduct semi-structured interviews. I spoke about the paper -“Computing and Mental Health: Intentionality and Reflection at the Click of a Button”, which I had recently read and the fact thatchy had used a questionnaire and a group discussion as evaluation tools. Marian said that group discussions tend to homogenise the results. I concluded that I should alter the proforma to reflect this approach to experience evaluation. We should conduct semi-strictiured interviews individually.

While I am on this point I may as well refer to a discussion we had later on about how we should record the interviews with participants. Janet and Daniel suggested that I should write down in my ethics proforma that the participants will be asked if they want to be filmed and/ or audio recorded. Janet said that filming can pick up some of the embodied interaction forms that may otherwise not be detected. She mentioned that in a previous study they had fixed a camera up above the participants. It gave a birds eye view which picked up how the participants interacted with each other through body movements. Last this point we had a brief discussion about how the participants might find the camera intimidating. The association with surveillance may inhibit them and make their responses less lucid and honest. Daniel also suggested that I should say that its will be a two stage study. One stage with general members of the public and the next stage with service users from the mental health community support group.

At this point, having brought up the “click of a button” paper, Janet interjected that she had come into the possession of IOTA, a system of programmable buttons made by an startup IOT. (I don’t think this is the company but their product looks very similar to this - This got me thinking that we could develop a mood system similar to the one developed by the team in Lancaster that used a simple button for self-monitoring mood. I will have a play with the buttons next time I’m at the university..

We then had a brief discussion about CHI Daniel suggested that there were a couple of papers in the mental health sessions that might interest me. He will be pinging them across to me.

We concluded the meeting by agreeing that over the next few days I should draft up a first take at a methodology for the study. I will also be finishing off the prototyping and working on my indexing of the literature.



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