ISPR Presence News

Monthly Archives: April 2020

Call: Expressions of Interest for book on “Everyday Virtual (+Augmented/Mixed) Reality”

Call for Expressions of Interest for book on “Everyday Virtual (+Augmented/Mixed) Reality”

Dear colleague,

If you attended this year’s online Workshop on Everyday Virtual Reality held at IEEE VR 2020, you might remember that we mentioned we were in talks with Springer about editing a book on Everyday Virtual (+Augmented and Mixed) Reality. Ideally such a book would collect more in-depth versions of research experiences related to the Workshop themes, and about the impact they might have had.

If you are interested in contributing, please get in touch with us by sending to

  • A 0.5-1 page abstract with your proposal.
  • References for up to 5 of your most relevant publications (or ongoing work).

We will consider your abstract for invitation to submit a full chapter (subject to peer review) into the edited book, once approved by Springer. The book will be edited by Adalberto L.… read more. “Call: Expressions of Interest for book on “Everyday Virtual (+Augmented/Mixed) Reality””

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A theory of Zoom fatigue

[Zoom and other video conferencing platforms are an invaluable communication tool now more than ever and provide a relatively high level of presence to users, but they are also exhausting. This thoughtful analysis from The Convivial Society examines some of the presence-related and other reasons. For more on this topic see stories from the BBC, Wall Street Journal (by our colleague Jeremy Bailenson; requires subscription), and Fast Company. For an analysis of media alternatives based on bandwidth and immediacy see a post in the IDDblog from the Center for Teaching and Learning at DePaul University.–Matthew]

A Theory of Zoom Fatigue

The Convivial Society: Dispatch No. 5
L. M. Sacasas
April 20, 2020

Why is video-conferencing so exhausting?

The question is worth asking because it might be helpful to understand what is involved in an activity many of us cannot now avoid.… read more. “A theory of Zoom fatigue”

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Call: History of Human-Computer Interaction virtual workshop

Call for Papers

Remember the past to look to the future
A virtual workshop
7th July 2020

Submission deadline: 23rd June 2020

This workshop will bring together those interested in preserving the fragile history of human-computer interaction. This includes those interested in the strategies to support such endeavours in both HCI and related areas (within and outside academia), and also those seeking to understand the lessons past HCI holds for the on-going development of the field.

We hope that this workshop we will start a process to ensure the preservation of the history of HCI and also, by examining our own cultural preservation, understand the tools and infrastructure necessary to benefit cultural heritage more broadly. Although in some ways focused on the past, one core lesson of history is that it is easy to forget the lessons of history; by understanding the past we create the seedbed for better and more informed future interactions.… read more. “Call: History of Human-Computer Interaction virtual workshop”

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The Venn Room: Short film explores how VR will change our homes forever

[The 4:20 minute film in this story from dezeen explores how virtual reality is the latest and most advanced technology for creating social and spatial presence (though the term isn’t used). The original story includes seven different images and the film is also available via YouTube. The video and more images and information are available on the Space Popular website. –Matthew]

Swapping video calls for VR will change our homes forever says Space Popular

Amy Frearson
20 April 2020

This movie [available in the original story] by Space Popular explores how virtual reality could become as widespread as the video call, allowing our homes to digitally merge with those of our loved ones.

Zoom meetings and FaceTime calls have become a major form of communication, as people around the world face the realities of life and work in coronavirus shutdown.… read more. “The Venn Room: Short film explores how VR will change our homes forever”

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Call: Safe and Acceptable Human-Robot Collaboration at IEEE RO-MAN 2020

Special Session on
Safe and Acceptable Human-Robot Collaboration
the 29th IEEE International Symposium on Robot
and Human Interactive Communication (IEEE RO-MAN 2020)
Naples, Italy
August 31 to September 4, 2020

Deadline: 29th of April 2020

NOTE: The RO-MAN Steering and Organizing Committees are constantly monitoring the information and advice given by the World Health Organisation and the Governments about the COVID-19 pandemic (Coronavirus). Please know that health and safety are our first priority. Our thoughts are with those affected by the restrictions, difficulties and uncertainty that people are facing.

At this point, we would like to confirm that:

  • The paper submission deadline has been extended to the 29th of April to provide authors of the time to produce their best work, despite the many additional challenges we are facing at the moment.
  • We are considering alternatives to allow for remote participation to both the main conference and workshops should disruptions still occur in September.
read more. “Call: Safe and Acceptable Human-Robot Collaboration at IEEE RO-MAN 2020”
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Live streamed “quarantine concerts” are making live music more intimate than ever

[The pandemic has led to an increase in informal, intimate mediated concerts likely to evoke multiple forms of presence, as reported in this story from VOX (where the original includes nine video examples). See in particular the material following the added heading “[Presence-evoking characteristics of live streamed concerts]” and the last two short paragraphs. For another vivid example, see the recording of a Facebook Live living room concert by Eileen Jewel that I “attended” recently. For more information see NPR’s updated list of future concerts and CNBC’s coverage that focuses on “the future of the livestreamed concert beyond coronavirus.” –Matthew]

How “quarantine concerts” are keeping live music alive as venues remain closed

Live music is now more intimate than ever, thanks to social media.

By Allegra Frank
April 8, 2020

For many live music fans, spring is the most important season, as bands hit the road and huge festivals, such as South by Southwest and Coachella, kick off a busy concert season.… read more. “Live streamed “quarantine concerts” are making live music more intimate than ever”

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Job: Post-Doctoral Fellowship in Immersive Storytelling at Carleton University

Post-Doctoral Fellowship in Immersive Storytelling
School Of Journalism and Communication
Carleton University
Ottawa, Ontario

Application deadline: May 30, 2020

Virtual and augmented reality (VR, AR) are underexplored as storytelling media, despite recent technology advances yielding accessible devices such as the Oculus Rift. Museums regularly experiment with interactive digital technologies (such as AR and VR) as storytelling tools to enhance their exhibits. Tools to present stories in AR/VR typically require technological expertise. Yet, such projects also necessitate an understanding of storytelling and the limitations and opportunities presented by new media.

The Immersive Storytelling Research Group represents an interdisciplinary research collaboration between the School of Journalism and Communication and the School of Information Technology at Carleton University. This research group is led by Co-PIs Dr. Victoria McArthur (School of Journalism and Communication) and Dr. Robert Teather (School of Information Technology). The research team is collaborating on an interdisciplinary project in democratizing AR/VR storytelling.… read more. “Job: Post-Doctoral Fellowship in Immersive Storytelling at Carleton University”

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This farm sanctuary will let you invite a llama or goat to your next video meeting

[CNN is one of several press outlets reporting on an animal sanctuary’s clever way of entertaining and educating as they connect people with farm animals via Zoom (I seriously considered booking a “Goat-2-Meeting” for our next department meeting but they’re booked until June). Business Insider’s coverage adds that “Goat 2 Meeting is just one example of the innovative projects and offerings that have popped up in recent weeks to bring people together virtually.” and KQED adds “’There is a strong need for people to really get out, even through this vicarious video screen,’ said Sweet Farm co-founder Nate Salpeter.” and “The nonprofit’s end goal, both online and off, is to raise awareness about the evils of industrialized agriculture and the joys of treating animals like friends instead of meat.” For more details and to book a Goat-2-Meeting, see the Sweet Farm website.… read more. “This farm sanctuary will let you invite a llama or goat to your next video meeting”

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Call: CONVERSATIONS 2020 – 4th International Workshop on Chatbot Research

Call for Papers:

CONVERSATIONS 2020 – 4th International Workshop on Chatbot Research
November 23-24, 2020
University of Amsterdam
The Netherlands

Paper submission deadline: September 1, 2020

NOTE: In the case of travel or meeting restrictions: If travel or meeting restrictions are in place at the time of the workshop due to the corona pandemic, we will accommodate for online attendance to the workshop or – if need be – host the workshop as an online event.

Chatbot researchers and practitioners are invited to CONVERSATIONS 2020, a two-day workshop on chatbot research and design. This is the fourth event in the CONVERSATIONS workshop series, where chatbot researchers meet to collaborate and share their work. No registration fee is required for the workshop, and it is a stimulating venue to explore actively this rapidly advancing field.

Participants are encouraged to submit papers or demos presenting new empirical or theoretical work, as well as research on chatbot design, concepts, and evaluation.… read more. “Call: CONVERSATIONS 2020 – 4th International Workshop on Chatbot Research”

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Presence and sexuality during a pandemic

[Warning: Adult content. Sexuality is a common but under studied and discussed application area for presence. As this concise and link-filled story from The Conversation states, in the current global situation “digital technology has never been so central to human sexual and intimate connection.” See the original story for a different image. –Matthew]

[Image: Source: Cosmopolitan]

Online sex parties and virtual reality porn: Can sex in isolation be as fulfilling as real life?

April 16, 2020
Jennifer Power, Senior Research Fellow at the Australian Research Centre in Sex, Health and Society, La Trobe University
Andrea Waling, ARC DECRA Research fellow, La Trobe University

The public health response to COVID-19 has placed unprecedented limits on social contact. Many people may go without physical sexual intimacy for an extended (and indefinite) period.

Given human touch and connection are fundamental to humanity, this could have significant implications for the well-being of those who are single or apart from their sexual partners.… read more. “Presence and sexuality during a pandemic”

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