Captology – the study of computers as persuasive technologies

The Stanford Persuasive Technology Lab creates insight into how computing products — from websites to mobile phone software — can be designed to change what people believe and what they do.

Yes, this can be a scary topic: machines designed to influence human beliefs and behaviors. But there’s good news. We believe that much like human persuaders, persuasive interactive technologies can bring about positive changes in many domains, including health, business, safety, and education. We also believe that persuasive technology can bring about world peace in 30 years. With such ends in mind, we are creating a body of expertise in the design, theory, and analysis of persuasive technologies, an area called “captology.”

Captology is the study of computers as persuasive technologies. This includes the design, research, and analysis of interactive computing products created for the purpose of changing people’s attitudes or behaviors.

 

Paola Miani Macedo

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