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Science showcase presents psychology's 'hands-on' benefits
Date:8/2/2011

ing with a video camera to keep an object within a picture while giving a panoramic view. For example, for vertical location, "up" is represented by high frequencies and "down" by low frequencies. Horizontal location is indicated by the time it takes for a left-to-right scan of each image. Bright white is heard at maximum volume and dark is silent.

Long-term users of the vOICe who experience visual imagery via the device "can actually see with sound," Proulx said.

Another demonstration, called the uci@home project, will show how integrating psychology with emerging technologies can help people save on their home energy bills. Audience members can participate in a hands-on demonstration in a mock living space with lighting, energy and temperature sensors that deliver real-time information. The at-home system consists of five to 10 "smart plugs" that communicate wirelessly with a central hub. Each plug contains sensors to monitor power consumption, temperature and lighting, sending updates to the hub every three seconds. Consumers can see the information on their home computer or smartphone, while feedback via lighting and sound comes directly from the plugs.

"They will be able to see the difference in how much energy they are using and the cost savings associated with changing light bulbs, for example, compared to turning lights on or off," said presenter Beth Karlin, of the University of California, Irvine. "Differences in what type of information is presented to consumers as well as how much and how often it is presented can have a large impact on its effectiveness in leading to behavior change. Research suggests that energy conservation feedback is effective when it is frequent, long-term, clear, customized, appliance-specific and interactive."

The uci@home project is a collaboration among University of California, Irvine, Schools of Engineering, Social Ecology and Physical Science, led by physics professor David Kirkby, PhD, a
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Contact: Lisa Bowen
lbowen@apa.org
202-336-5707
American Psychological Association
Source:Eurekalert

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