Kenneth C Scott-Brown, Julia Allan, Leif Azzopardi, Marjon van der Pol, Paul Crook, Mark Bamford, Claire Moncrieffe, Donna McAvoy & Ian Reynolds. "Service-Please: an interactive healthy eating serious game application for tablet computer"

Post date: Sep 24, 2012 10:8:4 AM

Published in Proceedings of th e 26th BCS Conference on Human Computer Interaction (HCI 2012 - People & Computers XXVI) , Birmingham, UK, 12 - 14 September 2012.


While everyone knows that we should eat healthily, translating such information into practice is a major challenge for many of us when it comes to eating well. So despite a huge increase in awareness of the implications of food-choices, obesity levels in the UK continue to increase. In this paper, we present a novel application designed to deliver psychological ‘Approach Avoidance’ training in a serious games format. Developed for tablet computers, gameplay requires players to repeatedly push unhealthy food icons away, and pull healthy food icons towards themselves. The hypothesis for the overall project is that repeated push away gestures will produce an implicit avoidance bias towards unhealthy foods, reducing players’ tendency to consume them. Previous research using a joystick controlled PC training regime has shown success with alcohol choices, however the current project offers the potential for a pervasive game based intervention using a tablet and gestures making such training more readily accessible.

A copy of the paper is available from the BCS website.