Pranut Jain, a CS PhD student in the lab of Dr. Adam Lee, received an honorable mention award at Designing Interactive Systems (DIS) 2022 for his paper Laila is in a Meeting: Design and Evaluation of a Contextual Auto-Response Messaging Agent. DIS is an interdisciplinary conferenace that encompasses all issues related to the design and deployment of interactive systems. Research in the field of interactive systems addresses issues such as deisgn theory, critical perspectives, and diverse application domains. The paper for which Jain was awarded explores generating auto-responses to text messages using smartphone sensors, which Jain said differs from other automated messaging because of the frequency of text messages as compared to emails and phone calls.
"People are often expected to respond to incoming messages quickly. This not only causes distractions in their daily lives but also, not being able to fulfill those expectations can strain their social relationships," he said. "In my research, I explore how we can use virtual assistants to handle communications for their users when they cannot get to an incoming message. We are all somewhat familiar with auto-responses in emails or voice messages in calls. Why don't we have those in mobile messaging? Well, for one reason, we tend to receive many more text messages than phone calls and emails. Sending an auto-response for each message can get annoying fast. In our latest work, we designed an application that can predict its user's availability using smartphone sensors and send auto-responses when they are predicted to be unavailable."
An example of an auto-generated message using smart phone sensors.