John Waterworth will be representing the department at Presence 2018
Presence 2018, the 18th conference of the International Society for Presence Research in Prague will be held May 21-23 and John Waterworth will be there to represent the department of Informatics.
On the first day, John will moderate and take part in a panel discussion on the topic “Using the Senses to Make Sense: from aesthetics to ethics”. On the second day, he will present a full paper “Presence and human development: age-specific variations in presence and their implications for the design of life-enhancing interactive applications”, co-authored with colleagues from the University of Toronto.
Presence is the sense we get from being perceptually immersed in the world, the present time and place. When this world is a digital simulation, as in virtual reality, we experience what is called mediated presence – the experiential illusion of being immersed in a physical world, even though we know we aren’t. Both presentations reflect a long-standing academic interest in the experience of presence, a field in which John has many publications – including three books, several book chapters, journal papers and many conference presentations over the last 20 years.
The paper to be presented in Prague examines the relatively unexplored topic of changes in the sense of presence that go with a person’s development from early childhood to old age. It asks how presence changes over the lifespan and suggests how presence-modulating interactive environments should be designed to accommodate the needs of different age groups, especially as applied to psychotherapy and in cognitive training.