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The landscape of persuasive technologies
King P., Tester J. Communications of the ACM42 (5):31-38,1999.Type:Article
Date Reviewed: Jun 1 1999

Persuasive technology is the use of such things as computers and the Internet to induce the user to believe or do something. Examples given include:

  • encouraging food service employees to wash their hands (although the site given does not seem to relate to that);

  • convincing children to eat more fruits and vegetables (the Domain Name Server could not find the site when I searched for this);

  • helping users participate in an auction by treating the auction process as a game (the site appears to be well organized); and

  • providing environmental and pollution data to support local action (the site contains much data of all kinds).

Some technologies use physical artifacts. An example is Baby Think It Over, a computerized doll that seeks to encourage healthy behavior by approaching pregnancy in a thoughtful manner.

The authors feel that this use of technology will grow and that “persuasive computing may eventually become a seamless extension of a person’s everyday activities.”

Reviewer:  W. Eccles Review #: CR122339 (9906-0486)
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