On September the 30th, the lab had two exhibitions at the Lights Night public engagement event. In the first exhibition, participants were invited to walk the stairs wearing the Tobii 2 glasses mobile eye tracker, either while walking normally, or while writing a text on their phone. Play-back of the recorded eye movements showed that participants shifted their focus almost completely towards their phone while texting, showing that it is not safe to text and walk.
In the second exhibition, participants were invited to guess the calorie, saturated fat, sugar or sodium contents of a series of foods. Before some of the guesses, participants were asked to guess whether the amount was lower or higher than a given value. Previous work has shown that participants tend to be biased by these given amounts, an effect called anchoring. The demonstration also confirmed the 'health halo' effect, in which foods that are considered to be healthy are thought to be lower in calorie contents.
If you would like to give the second demonstration a try: the software can be found here. To run it on your PC, first install Opensesame from this link (version 2.9 is needed; it won't work on version 3.0).