Communication tools that allows for physical and emotional closeness between friends

FriendSense is a project mainly located in the Mobile Life Centre at Stockholm University, but FriendSense is also a project with many other contributing partners, both members in the centre such as TeliaSonera and SICS but also outside contributors such as School of Information and Communication Technology.

In FriendSense we try to build communication tools that allows for physical and emotional closeness between friends. We focus on friends who know each other well and therefore are acquainted with each other's ways of expressing themselves. To them, small nuances in expressions may reveal important underlying messages about their friends' emotional status, needs or problems. Even when they have not met for a while, such a group of friends will try to maintain the strong ties between them through spreading information and tokens of friendship in the circle of friends.

We have initiated a design process where we use simple but fully working prototypes that functions as technical probes, revealing people's ideas and needs through entering their daily communication patterns. By getting hands-on experience of a functioning system, users more easily can provide feedback on what works and what does not, as well as creatively take part in the design process.

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