Through the past decades the internet has become a quintessential part of our everyday lives. It is used for work, navigation, entertainment, education, and countless other purposes / instances. Besides the positive effects the internet has brought to society, there are also pitfalls, such as online procrastination. This research project focuses on the latter, and especially on procrastination on the internet during working hours, also known as cyberslacking.

As cyberslacking can become a habit and visiting certain sites can be performed unconsciously, this research project focused on whether a physical microboundary can help cyberslackers to become aware of their behaviour and whether this leads to a reduction of the behaviour. For the research, Protupo was created as a physical microboundary. Protupo is a small box that can be plugged into a laptop. If you want to visit a site (which you use for procrastination) during your working hours, Protupo initially denies you access to the website, by asking you to fill in a password. In order to fill in your password, you have to touch Protupo, which will then show you a movement sequence. By replicating this sequence, you obtain access to the site. By adding the extra interaction the idea was that users would only use the sites for procrastination when they really wanted to, instead of giving in to a habit. The aim of the project was to see whether this added interaction would make people aware of their behaviour and whether it would help to reduce it.

  • Project 1 Semester
  • By Rosa van Koningsbruggen
  • [1]Odom, W., Wakkary, R., Lim, Y. K., Desjardins, A., Hengeveld, B., & Banks, R. (2016, May). From research prototype to research product. In Proceedings of the 2016 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (pp. 2549-2561). ACM.