Events

Astrid von der Putten, Nicole Kramer, Jonathan Gratch: “Who’s there? Can a Virtual Agent Really Elicit Social Presence”

November 11, 2009 | USC ICT

Speaker: Astrid von der Putten, Nicole Kramer, Jonathan Gratch
Host: 12th Annual International Workshop on Presence

This study investigates whether humans perceive a higher degree of social presence when interacting with an animated character that displays natural as opposed to no listening behaviors and whether this interacts with people’s believe that they are interacting with an agent or an avatar. In a 2×2 between subjects experimental design 83 participants were either made believe that they encounter an agent, or that they communicate with another participant mediated by an avatar. In fact, in both conditions the communication partner was an autonomous agent that either exhibited high or low behavioral realism. We found that participants experienced equal amounts of presence, regardless of interacting with an agent or an avatar. Behavioral realism, however, had an impact on the subjective feeling of presence: people confronted with a character displaying high behavioral realism reported a higher degree of mutual awareness.