I have always been interested in the state of mind of a person, especially when it involves investigating the interplay between the sound and the unsound mind. There is a personification that this investigation entails and the results can be very resounding. I recently chance upon a research study on the positive and negative psychology and how too much of one emotion could lead to uninviting consequences.
This research study has brought me to my attention, I always knew that a constant negative emotion is unhealthy for our physical, and well-being in general. But, studies has shown that being in a constant state of positive emotion may not be healthy for you. We have always been fed with scientific research revealing to us that positive emotions, like happiness, are good for us. Positive emotions are the catalyst to motivate and pursue important goals and overcome obstacles, shielding us from effects of stress, create good connections among one another and even stave off physical and mental ailments.
Happiness is our go-to emotion, naturally, it is something we as humans strive for. However, researchers are exploring whether feeling too good can be bad for you. By observing potential pitfalls of happiness, it may be possible for us to understand this logic better and promote healthier and more balanced lives.
It is without a doubt that people would want to be happy. Most of us are hardwired to pursue happiness. Iriss Mauss director of the Emotion & Emotion Regulation Lab at Berkeley (EERLAB) supports this notion of counterintuitive idea that striving for happiness may actually cause more harm than good. At times, the more people pursue happiness, the less they seem able to obtain it. Mauss shows that the more people strive for happiness, the more likely they will be to set a high standard for happiness – then be disappointed when that standard is not met.
Another research according to Mark Alan Davis's 2008 meta-analysis of the relationship between mood and creativity, when people experience overwhelming boost of happiness, they no longer experience the same space for creativity. People lose the ability to use their inner creative resources. Psychologist Barbara Fredrickson, writer for her book Positivity, mentioned that too much positive emotion – and too little negative emotion – makes people inflexible in the face of new challenges.
It is ideally important to experience happiness in the right amount. Experiencing less amount of happiness could also cause issues, it also applies with too much negative emotions may lead to the same thing. Happiness has a time and place, it is important to be mindful about the context or situation in which one experiences happiness. It is crucial to impose an emotional balance.
How then can we attain a healthy dose of happiness without compromising our well-being?
Anger Flanker is an exploration, inquiry and experimentation of the possibility to step on the threshold of negative emotion in a person. Using a face tracker, the project aims to explore and attempt to investigate the relationship between negative and positive emotions flexibly in a interactive environment.
Intentionally inducing anger in the user by allowing them to interact with a game that is impossible to win. As the user pays undivided attention to the monitor, a webcam would capture the emotions on the face of the user. The data would then be recorded. The environment of the user would change as the game gets more intense from the user. Once the API has reached a certain threshold, the game would gradually get easier. The user would also notice that the environment changes to a calmer state. The webcam would capture the face of the user when he/she smiles and a small printer would print out a frame of him/her smiling.
Above you can find a illustrated mock up of the interactive piece. The force sensor is meant for the user to control the game. The LED strips will change gradually based on the emotions of the user.
The fabrication of the piece is designed in a funnel like manner. This would allow the user to have better focus on the monitor screen. The webcam will capture the emotion discreetly.
The user would be looking down at the monitor and interacting with the game using the force sensor on the left and right.
The Emotion Tracker
The webcam face tracker will detect the emotions on the face as show above. It will read the data based on the emotions on the face.
Drawing inspiration from DUET, the game would involve only one player and he would have to navigate through a series of blocks of different sizes in order to survive to the end.
- This is work in progress -