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  • Disputation: 2019-04-26 09:12 J1640, Karlskrona
    Jerčić, Petar
    Blekinge Tekniska Högskola, Fakulteten för datavetenskaper, Institutionen för kreativa teknologier.
    The Effects of Emotions and Their Regulation on Decision-making Performance in Affective Serious Games2019Doktorsavhandling, sammanläggning (Övrigt vetenskapligt)
    Abstract [en]

    Emotions are thought to be one of the key factors that critically influence human decision-making. Emotion-regulation can help to mitigate emotion-related decision biases and eventually lead to a better decision performance. Serious games emerged as a new angle introducing technological methods to practicing emotion-regulation, where meaningful biofeedback information communicates player's affective states to a series of informed gameplay choices. These findings motivate the notion that in the decision context of serious games, one would benefit from awareness and regulation of such emerging emotions.

    This thesis explores the design and evaluation methods for creating serious games where emotion-regulation can be practiced using physiological biofeedback measures. Furthermore, it investigates emotions and the effect of emotion-regulation on decision performance in serious games. Using the psychophysiological methods in the design of such games, emotions and their underlying neural mechanism have been explored.

    The results showed the benefits of practicing emotion-regulation in serious games, where decision-making performance was increased for the individuals who down-regulated high levels of arousal while having an experience of positive valence. Moreover, it increased also for the individuals who received the necessary biofeedback information. The results also suggested that emotion-regulation strategies (i.e., cognitive reappraisal) are highly dependent on the serious game context. Therefore, the reappraisal strategy was shown to benefit the decision-making tasks investigated in this thesis. The results further suggested that using psychophysiological methods in emotionally arousing serious games, the interplay between sympathetic and parasympathetic pathways could be mapped through the underlying emotions which activate those two pathways. Following this conjecture, the results identified the optimal arousal level for increased performance of an individual on a decision-making task, by carefully balancing the activation of those two pathways. The investigations also validated these findings in the collaborative serious game context, where the robot collaborators were found to elicit diverse affect in their human partners, influencing performance on a decision-making task. Furthermore, the evidence suggested that arousal is equally or more important than valence for the decision-making performance, but once optimal arousal has been reached, a further increase in performance may be achieved by regulating valence. Furthermore, the results showed that serious games designed in this thesis elicited high physiological arousal and positive valence. This makes them suitable as research platforms for the investigation of how these emotions influence the activation of sympathetic and parasympathetic pathways and influence performance on a decision-making task.

    Taking these findings into consideration, the serious games designed in this thesis allowed for the training of cognitive reappraisal emotion-regulation strategy on the decision-making tasks. This thesis suggests that using evaluated design and development methods, it is possible to design and develop serious games that provide a helpful environment where individuals could practice emotion-regulation through raising awareness of emotions, and subsequently improve their decision-making performance.

  • Disputation: 2019-05-03 13:15 J1650, Karlskrona
    Jachimczyk, Bartosz
    Blekinge Tekniska Högskola, Fakulteten för teknikvetenskaper, Institutionen för tillämpad signalbehandling. DAC SA.
    Real-time Locating Systems for indoor applications: the methodological customization approach2019Doktorsavhandling, sammanläggning (Övrigt vetenskapligt)
    Abstract [en]

    Emerging wireless technologies increase the potential and effectiveness of wireless Real-time Locating Systems (RTLSs), which precisely localize the position, and identify things and people in real time. Among many applications, RTLSs are widely used in the industrial sector for indoor logistics and safety applications. However, signal interferences, which affect the system’s performance, are a serious issue of all indoor RTLS applications. Among others, the interferences are caused by the changeable working environment, the geometry and structure of the space, furnishing, and other obstacles. A customization of the RTLS’s architecture and localization algorithm may provide a way to overcome the interference problem and then enhance the systems’ performance.

    The objective of this thesis is to develop and implement customization methods, which enhance system performance in the changeable working environment without compromising the functional and non-functional requirements defined by future users and stakeholders. The customized solution is to be based on the comprehensive methodological analysis of the system’s technical and environmental constraints, along with the requirements specified by the application field. The customization process covers the selection, adjustment and adaptation of the wireless technologies and methods in order to enhance the location system’s performance, in terms of accuracy and precision without compromising its simplicity and price.

    In this research, wireless technologies of Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) and Ultra-wideband (UWB) are applied. The related indoor localization methods, such as, ranging techniques based on Received Signal Strength (RSS) and Angle of Arrival (AoA), are a thesis focus. Moreover, estimation methods like Fingerprinting and Angulation are used.

    One of the proposed customization methods of RFID-based 3D RTLS, refers to the heuristic analysis-based optimization of a number and configuration of readers. For the same type of system, an alternative way of performance improvement is a customization of localization algorithm, explicitly the Neural Network-based estimation algorithm and its structural features and training methods.

    Also in this thesis, performance improvement methods of the AoA-based RTLS operating in an UWB technology are proposed. The proposed customization of this system type is based on the uncertainty pattern defined by a statistical uncertainty model, which maps the localization uncertainty in terms of precision in the 2D workspace. The model depicts how the localization uncertainty depends on an arrangement of Location Sensors and workspace geometry. Another proposed customization method is realized by defining and implementing correction vectors for different working environments, which enhance the system’s performance in terms of its accuracy.

    This thesis consists of two parts. Part I, Prolegomena, presents the overview of applied theories and research methods. This part aims to illustrate the links between the articles constituting the second part of the dissertation. Part II, Papers consists of five reformatted papers already published in peer reviewed journals and conferences.

  • Disputation: 2019-05-29 13:30 J1650, Karlskrona
    Andreasson, Eskil
    Blekinge Tekniska Högskola.
    Mechanics and Failure in Thin Material Layers: Towards Realistic Package Opening Simulations2019Doktorsavhandling, sammanläggning (Övrigt vetenskapligt)
    Abstract [en]

    The final goal of this PhD-work is an efficient and user-friendly finite element modelling strategy targeting an industrial available package opening application.  In order to reach this goal, different experimental mechanical and fracture mechanical tests were continuously refined to characterize the studied materials. Furthermore, the governing deformation mechanisms and mechanical properties involved in the opening sequence were quantified with full field experimental techniques to extract the intrinsic material response. An identification process to calibrate the material model parameters with inverse modelling analysis is proposed. Constitutive models, based on the experimental results for the two continuum materials, aluminium and polymer materials, and how to address the progressive damage modelling have been concerned in this work. The results and methods considered are general and can be applied in other industries where polymer and metal material are present.                                                                   

    This work has shown that it is possible to select constitutive material models in conjunction with continuum material damage models, adequately predicting the mechanical behaviour in thin laminated packaging materials. Finally, with a slight modification of already available techniques and functionalities in a commercial general-purpose finite element software, it was possible to build a simulation model replicating the physical behaviour of an opening device. A comparison of the results between the experimental opening and the virtual opening model showed a good correlation.

    The advantage with the developed modelling approach is that it is possible to modify the material composition of the laminate. Individual material layers can be altered, and the mechanical properties, thickness or geometrical shape can be changed. Furthermore, the model is flexible and a new opening design with a different geometry and load case can easily be implemented and changed in the simulation model. Therefore, this type of simulation model is prepared to simulate sustainable materials in packages and will be a useful tool for decision support early in the concept selection in technology and development projects.