SoZen – Improving Productivity with a Soundscape Generating Zen Garden

Yang J, Hermann T (2017)
In: Proceedings of International Computer Music Conference (ICMC2017).

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Abstract
This paper presents the SoZen system, an interactive decorative artifact that can control features of ambient soundscapes. The system aims at improving the sonic quality of work/living space. For that, features such as the placement of stones and patterns in the sand are extracted via a webcam and in turn control directly aspects of the sound playback/synthesis engine. We evaluated SoZen in a within-subject study to understand the benefit of interactive ambient soundscapes as participants worked in a sonically simulated office environment. Participants performed significantly better in terms of error rate in a spreadsheet-inputting task under the ambient soundscape condition compared to the baseline condition, and evaluated the system positively in a subsequent survey and interview. However, no significant difference in their psychological states between conditions are found based on the PANAS measure, apart from the Excited affect. SoZen serves as an example for how existing decoration artifacts can be transformed into multimodal (visual, auditory and tangible) user interfaces with positive side effects on their inhabitants in a home or office environment.
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Yang J, Hermann T. SoZen – Improving Productivity with a Soundscape Generating Zen Garden. In: Proceedings of International Computer Music Conference (ICMC2017). 2017.
Yang, J., & Hermann, T. (2017). SoZen – Improving Productivity with a Soundscape Generating Zen Garden. Proceedings of International Computer Music Conference (ICMC2017)
Yang, J., and Hermann, T. (2017). “SoZen – Improving Productivity with a Soundscape Generating Zen Garden” in Proceedings of International Computer Music Conference (ICMC2017).
Yang, J., & Hermann, T., 2017. SoZen – Improving Productivity with a Soundscape Generating Zen Garden. In Proceedings of International Computer Music Conference (ICMC2017).
J. Yang and T. Hermann, “SoZen – Improving Productivity with a Soundscape Generating Zen Garden”, Proceedings of International Computer Music Conference (ICMC2017), 2017.
Yang, J., Hermann, T.: SoZen – Improving Productivity with a Soundscape Generating Zen Garden. Proceedings of International Computer Music Conference (ICMC2017). (2017).
Yang, Jiajun, and Hermann, Thomas. “SoZen – Improving Productivity with a Soundscape Generating Zen Garden”. Proceedings of International Computer Music Conference (ICMC2017). 2017.
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