Concealing or revealing mobile medical devices? Designing for onstage and offstage presentation

Aisling Ann O'Kane, Yvonne Rogers, Ann E. Blandford

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference Contribution (Conference Proceeding)

32 Citations (Scopus)


Adults with Type 1 Diabetes have choices regarding the technology they use to self-manage their chronic condition. They can use glucose meters, insulin pumps, smartphone apps, and other technologies to support their everyday care. However, little is known about how their social lives might influence what they adopt or how they use technologies. A multi-method study was conducted to examine contextual factors that influence their technology use. While individual differences play a large role in everyday use, social factors were also found to influence use. For example, people can hide their devices in uncertain social situations or show them off to achieve a purpose. We frame these social behaviours using Goffman's theatre metaphor of onstage and offstage behaviour, and discuss how this kind of analysis can inform the design of future mobile medical devices for self-management of chronic conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCHI 2015 - Proceedings of the 33rd Annual CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems: Crossings
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery (ACM)
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)9781450331456
Publication statusPublished - 18 Apr 2015
Event33rd Annual CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, CHI 2015: Crossings - COEX, Seoul, Korea, Republic of
Duration: 18 Apr 201523 Apr 2015
Conference number: 33


Conference33rd Annual CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, CHI 2015
Abbreviated titleCHI 2015
Country/TerritoryKorea, Republic of
OtherFor over 30 years, the CHI conference (pronounced ‘kai’) has attracted the world’s leading researchers and practitioners in the field of Human Computer Interaction (HCI) from businesses and universities to share ground-breaking research and innovations related to how humans interact with digital technologies. The Association for Computing Machinery’s (ACM) CHI conference is the world's premiere conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, presenting a highly selective showcase of the very best advances across the disciplines of computer science, cognitive psychology, design, social science, human factors, artificial intelligence, graphics, visualization, multi-media design and other disciplines.
Internet address

Structured keywords

  • Digital Health


  • Digital Health


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