Fabius Steinberger is an Automotive User Experience researcher and PhD candidate with the Urban Informatics Research Lab. Through his work, he is also affiliated with the QUT Design Lab and the Centre for Accident Research & Road Safety (CARRS-Q). His background is in Human-Machine Interaction, Computer Science, and Technology Management. He received his Bachelor and Master of Science degrees from the University of Munich (LMU) and an Honours Degree from the Center for Digital Technologies and Management Munich (CDTM).
- Automotive UX / UI / HMI
- Boredom, distraction, situational awareness
- Connected and automated driving
- Gamification, task engagement
- Human-computer interaction
- Urban mobility
PhD Research: Risky Gadgets to the Rescue – Designing Against Driver Boredom
This doctoral study is guided by two observations in the automotive domain. First, there has been an increase in drivers accessing smart devices and apps behind the steering wheel, and we will continue to see more of this behaviour in the future. Secondly, low levels of engagement while driving can pose road safety risks, e.g., inattention during low traffic or routine trips. Semi-automated driving amplifies the significance of this issue: relinquishing manual control further decreases engagement, yet requires drivers to remain vigilant and take over control at any time. I explore how smart devices can be re-contextualised as driving tools rather than distractions. Specifically, I critically analyse the challenges and opportunities in the design of interactive apps to alleviate driver boredom and re-engage drivers during periods of low task engagement. The concept involves the use of real-time data, location-based services, ambient interface design, and gamification to provide safe and engaging user experiences while driving.