E-GOVERNMENT (E-GOV) IS THE USE of information technologies to deliver government services through Web sites devoted to users interacting with government. E-gov is a growing sector of Web usage, driven by the expectation of improving the delivery of public administration services, easier data integration in information systems, and overall cost reduction [6]. However, citizens use e-gov services reluctantly, partly due to usability problems [1]. To improve the user experience of such sites, we developed a prototype e-gov Web site using an animated face (AF) with text-to-speech (TTS) voice to assist users. We used the AF because faces stimulate human attention [3], and anthropomorphic agents increase users’ perception of flow [5] (flow is a construct depicting a user’s interactions as playful and exploratory). Consistent with physiological and computer science studies, we conducted user tests to measure how adding AF influences users’ behavior. Our results show that the AF proved effective in reducing the number of visited pages when users had specific tasks to perform on a Web site; however, contrary to our expectations, task completion times were not significantly altered by the introduction of the AF. We conclude that AF can be useful in e-gov Web sites, but not in situations where time to perform a task is critical or must be shortened.

Assisting E-Government Users with Animated Talking Faces

FOGLIA, PIERFRANCESCO;PRETE, COSIMO ANTONIO;
2007

Abstract

E-GOVERNMENT (E-GOV) IS THE USE of information technologies to deliver government services through Web sites devoted to users interacting with government. E-gov is a growing sector of Web usage, driven by the expectation of improving the delivery of public administration services, easier data integration in information systems, and overall cost reduction [6]. However, citizens use e-gov services reluctantly, partly due to usability problems [1]. To improve the user experience of such sites, we developed a prototype e-gov Web site using an animated face (AF) with text-to-speech (TTS) voice to assist users. We used the AF because faces stimulate human attention [3], and anthropomorphic agents increase users’ perception of flow [5] (flow is a construct depicting a user’s interactions as playful and exploratory). Consistent with physiological and computer science studies, we conducted user tests to measure how adding AF influences users’ behavior. Our results show that the AF proved effective in reducing the number of visited pages when users had specific tasks to perform on a Web site; however, contrary to our expectations, task completion times were not significantly altered by the introduction of the AF. We conclude that AF can be useful in e-gov Web sites, but not in situations where time to perform a task is critical or must be shortened.
Foglia, Pierfrancesco; F., Giuntoli; Prete, COSIMO ANTONIO; M., Zanda
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11568/194561
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