Mouse clicks and cursor movements indicate your emotional state

Study: Mouse Clicks And Cursor Movements Indicate Your Emotional State

The click of your mouse and the speed of your cursor may reveal your emotional state.

Professor Jeffrey Jenkins from Brigham Young University claims that people who experience negative emotions while using a computer alter their cursor speed and exhibit more erratic mouse behavior.

A write-up of his findings explains, "When users are upset or confused, the mouse no longer follows a straight or gently curving path. Instead, movements become jagged and sudden. Additionally, someone exhibiting negative emotions moves a mouse slower."

Jenkins dissects that outcome, noting, "It's counterintuitive; people might think, 'When I'm frustrated, I start moving the mouse faster.' Well, no, you actually start moving slower."

The technology is currently being fine-tuned in order to help websites accommodate users' emotional needs by resolving issues that elicit negative reactions.

Jenkins said, "Traditionally it has been very difficult to pinpoint when a user becomes frustrated, leading them to not come back to a site. Being able to sense a negative emotional response, we can adjust the website experience to eliminate stress or to offer help."

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