Assessing Emotions by Cursor Motions: An Affective Computing Approach


Choice reaching, e.g., reaching a targeted object by hand, involves a dynamic online integration of perception, action and cognition, where neural activities of prefrontal cortical regions are concurrently coordinated with sensori-motor subsystems. On the basis of this theoretical development, the authors investigate the extent to which cursor movements in a simple choice-reaching task reveal people’s emotions, such as anxiety. The results show that there is a strong correlation between cursor trajectory patterns and self-reported anxiety in male participants. Because computer cursors are ubiquitous, our trajectory analysis can be augmented to existing affective computing technologies.

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