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Communicating Robotic Help Requests: Effects of Eye-Expressions, LED-Lights and Polite Language

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De Gruyter


In this paper we report results from a web- and video-based study on the perception of a request for help from a robot head. Colored lights, eye-expressions and politeness of the used language were varied. We measured effects on expression identification, hedonic user experience, perceived politeness, and help intention. Additionally, sociodemographic data, a ‘face blindness’ questionnaire, and negative attitudes towards robots were collected to control for possible influences on the dependent variables. A total of n = 139 participants were included in the analysis. In this paper, the focus is placed on interaction effects and on the influence of covariates. Significant effects were found for the interaction of LED lighting and eye-expressions and for language and eye-expressions on help intention. The expression identification is significantly influenced by the interaction of LED lighting and eye-expressions. Several significant effects of the covariates were found, both direct and from interaction with independent variables. Especially the negative attitudes towards robots significantly influence help intention and perceived politeness. The results provide information on the effect of different design choices for help requesting robots.


Westhoven, Martin; Grinten, Tim van der (2020): Communicating Robotic Help Requests: Effects of Eye-Expressions, LED-Lights and Polite Language. i-com: Vol. 19, No. 2. DOI: 10.1515/icom-2020-0013. Berlin: De Gruyter. PISSN: 2196-6826. pp. 153-167