Technology has gone to the dogs.
Humans aren’t the only animals who benefit from technology, and the emerging field of animal-computer interactions (ACI) seeks to understand how animals interact with human-made technology in order to adapt tools to animals’ innate characteristics. Devices as varied as touchscreen computers for apes and self-milking machines for cows, for example, have allowed animals to perform complex tasks themselves, proving they are intelligent enough to adapt to new tools. Although animals are the end-users of devices, their needs and limitations are often not taken into account in the design process.Researchers typically focus on designing systems first and seeing how the animals like them after the fact. ACI seeks to turn this practice on its head.
Animals + Tech
ACI posits animals as both technology users and developers. Researchers are redefining the role animals play as they develop technology for them, measuring their responsiveness and behavior during the process of creating new tools. Clara Mancini, senior lecturer in Interaction Design and head of the Animal-Computer Interaction Laboratory at the Open