Evaluating Mobile Remote Presence (MRP) Robots

July 2014
Topics: Artificial Intelligence, Human Computer Interaction, Collaborative Computing, Human Factors Engineering
Tristan Lewis, The MITRE Corporation
Dr. Jill L. Drury, The MITRE Corporation
Brandon Beltz, The MITRE Corporation
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Video teleconferencing systems (VTCs) have enhanced remote meetings because their ability to convey nonverbal or social cues can make them simulate in-person interaction more closely than telephone conversations. Yet many people feel that something is still lacking, most likely because VTCs require all interaction to take place in a pre-defined set of rooms and/or from a single viewpoint. In contrast, mobile remote presence (MRP) robots, sometimes called telepresence robots, enable participants to move their focus from their colleagues’ faces to a screen at the front of the room, to artifacts on a table, to posters or sticky notes on the room’s walls, etc. Consumers now have a choice of several commercially available MRP systems, but there are few evaluation methods tailored for this type of system. In this paper, we present a proposed set of heuristics for evaluating the user experience of a MRP robot. Further, we describe the process we used to develop these heuristics.

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