are no longer merely digital devices that provide data, instead they can now
detect when you are angry, according to Professor Jerry Jenkins from Brigham
professor from BYU says that the pattern of mouse usage can be used to detect
varying emotions like anger
, sadness, frustrating or even confusion. The study is based on in depth understanding of user behaviour and mouse usage patterns.
‘Computers could detect your emotional state based on mouse movement.’
For the study, the professor and his fellow
researchers designed an online test that would get the users worked up and angry. This test purportedly was designed with the following inclusions to increase user's anger,
was a timed test
page would open very slowly
was negative marking for the wrong answer
The researchers then intently studied the mouse movement patterns of the
students who took up the test, to understand the pattern when people are angry
or frustrated. With the advanced technology available, Jenkins used available
data points from the mouse movement to measure the extent of deviation, which
was used to detect emotion. At the end of the test the students were provided
details of the study to improve their mood
and to rest their anxiety
technology has now been patented and sold to a start up that is intent on
continuing the research along with Jenkins. Mind control
technology has been used for medical purposes like for prosthetic
arms and for those with physical
limitations but this current research would benefit user experience
of Mind Control Technology
advancement in computer usage and enhanced visitor experience is guaranteed on
use of this technology.
Websites will now be able to assess the mood of
the visitor and remove aspects of the site that lead to anger.
like ticket websites will benefit from detecting frustration
can change user experience to encourage repeated visits
into mobile technology would further improve website popularity. Only here
instead of mouse movement, swipes will be considered.
The technology holds a lot of promise for website owners who will now be
able to detect user experience and can get a glimpse of their emotional state
rather than banking merely on the data keyed in by the user.
of Mind Control Technology
will be intelligently designed to captivate the user
elements of websites will be avoided
For the websites;
will avoid elements that cause negative emotions among users
towards the website
pertaining to purchase
This article, published in the journal MIS Quarterly
assesses the mouse movement patterns of users at different state of minds.
Emotions experienced by users will be transmitted by mere movement of the
mouse, making surveys redundant.
According to professor Jenkins, an angry user is more likely to move the
mouse slowly and with jagged movements, though according to common knowledge,
people believe that anger could lead to fast and irritated movements. An
earlier study by researchers from Malaysia detailed the use of computer technology that detected lip movements
of the user to determine the mood of the user.
Jenkins says " Being able to sense a negative emotional response, we can adjust
the website response to eliminate stress
or to offer help". This technology will elevate user involvement, benefiting both the user as well as the website.
Of course there is the added risk of better gaming
experience which has its share of disadvantages!
1. Martin Hibbeln, Jeffrey L. Jenkins, Christoph
Schneider, Joseph S. Valacich, and Markus Weinmann; "Inferring negative emotions from mouse
cursor movements"; MISQ Archivist