WHAT IS A SYMBIOTIC HUMAN-MACHINE INTERACTION?
“Symbiotic interaction identifies interactive computerized systems that create steps further with respect to user-centered design paradigms. Symbiotic interaction relies on a new generation of resources to understand users and to make themselves understandable to users. We refer to the fact that distributed systems can easily and autonomously sense the physiological and behavioral information of users over time; it can aggregate and analyze this and other information in a large mass of users. This makes it possible to design systems that detect the users’ psychophysiological states. This also makes it possible to predict actions that use this information to better adapt output to the user regardless of his/her ability to explicitly refine his/her request.” (p.4) “Symbiotic interaction can be achieved by combining computation, sensing technology, and interaction design to realize deep perception, awareness, and understanding between humans and computers”. (p.11)
From Jacucci, G., Spagnolli, A., Freeman, J., & Gamberini, L. (2014). Symbiotic interaction: a critical definition and comparison to other human-computer paradigms. In Symbiotic Interaction (pp. 3-20). Springer International Publishing.
“The distinction between the active role of the user and the passive function of the machine is starkly defined by the rigid turn-taking structure of contemporary HCI. This flow of information between person and machine has been depicted as two monologues rather than a genuine dialogue. The way in which people interact with technology has also been described as asymmetrical with respect to the flow of information. In other words, the person is free to interrogate the operational state of the computer (e.g. memory usage, Wi-Fi speed etc.) whereas the latter remains essentially blind to the psychological status of its user. (…)In the absence of any ability to perceive or interpret the inner world of the user, the computer has minimal capacity for inference, anticipation, learning or any other quality that would liberate technology from its role as a slave-system “(p. 58) “The capacity of the system to successfully translate human goals and values into adaptive responses that are appropriate and effective at the interface represents a particular challenge” (p.57). “If technology can develop in this direction, the relationship between users and machines evolves towards a close, collaborative interaction that has profound implications for future technologies and its human users.” (p.59). “Such benefits can only be obtained at the cost of a strategic reconfiguration of the relationship between people and technology – specifically users must cede a degree of control over their interaction with technology in order to create an interaction that is active, dynamic and capable of responding in a stochastic fashion.”(p.57)
From Fairclough, S. (2015). A Closed-Loop Perspective on Symbiotic Human-Computer Interaction. In Symbiotic Interaction (pp. 57-67). Springer International Publishing.