Flash animations to depict social relationships
Description of Research Project:
I have an exciting research opportunity for one or two undergraduates who are proficient with Macromedia Flash and interested in pioneering new methods for exploring how people perceive social relations. We have completed 17 studies on how people in very diverse cultures perceive simple spatial arrays of circles. People consistently and readily interpret particular spatial configurations as depiciting specific types of elementary social relationships. Now we want to test hypotheses about the social interpretations of moving circles.
Description of Student Responsibilities:
The student(s) responsibility will be to program simple Flash animations to depict basic forms of social relationships. Then the programmers and other researchers will pilot-test the animations to see how people interpret them. The animations will consist of circles moving in fairly simple scripted ways. We anticipate trying out 20 or 30 animations, eliminating some based on pilot testing, revising others, and so on until we have a set that work well. Solid experience programming in Flash is a prerequisite. Ideally, student programmers will continue with this research for 2 or 3 quarters.