New app gives early warning of mean messages

The app aims to give people a heads up before they receive a negative message so they have time to prepare themselves
A woman uses her BlackBerry phone. Computer scientists have developed a mobile phone app that can predict the tone of incoming messages before a user reads them so that they are not caught off guard by angry or hostile words.
Computer scientists have developed a mobile phone app that can predict the tone of incoming messages before a user reads them so that they are not caught off guard by angry or hostile words.

The Android phone app "Stress @ Work", created at the University of Portsmouth, colour codes messages so people have time to prepare themselves, avoiding the shock of suddenly reading a nasty message sent via Facebook, or text.

Nice messages are colour-coded green, while negative messages are designated red, and neutral messages blue.

Senior lecturer Mohamed Gaber said the "ultimate objective" of the app was to ensure that people are made aware of when they will receive negative content "so they are able to manage their stress in the best possible way."

The app colour codes messages for users
An image showing the Android app "Stress @ Work", developed by the University of Portsmouth. The mobile phone app can predict the tone of incoming messages before a user reads them, colour coding them so that users are not caught off guard by angry or hostile words.
"Whether we are reading a worrying social media news story or a warning email from our manager, messages can upset mood and increase , just as good news and encouraging emails can cheer you up," he said.

Some days users may receive more negative content than others, he said, adding: "It is important that the user attempts to take an action in order to not get stressed, especially if this may affect the individual's performance at work and/or their behaviour at home."

The ability of people to handle stress does vary, so users can further tailor the app to their own personal specifications by designating positive or negative, an extra feature that allows the app to "learn" about how each individual user's perception, Dr Gaber said.

The developers hope to make the available for free downloading from the Android marketplace by the end of June, and on other platforms within the next academic year.


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Citation: New app gives early warning of mean messages (2012, June 12) retrieved 23 May 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2012-06-app-early-messages.html
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Jun 12, 2012
Now someone will have to develop an app that warns people about how they are about to receive a warning of the message context. In fact forget the message all together just design an app that tells you what to do based on the tone of the messages you receive.

But seriously who in the hell would ever use this useless piece of crap? Uh oh, that one would have been red.....

Senior lecturer Mohamed Gaber said the "ultimate objective" of the app was to ensure that people are made aware of when they will receive negative content "so they are able to manage their stress in the best possible way."


If you need early warnings like that you shouldn't be using a cellphone, in fact you probably should ever leave your home or move from your seat. I mean, yikes, you could stub your toe and get frustrated and good lord who knows what could happen if that were to occur...........Makes me wonder how people ever got along before technology.

Jun 12, 2012
Apparently another way to try to make the majority of the population spineless. Not only keep many from learning to be able to handle a wide range of circumstances, in fact, even depleting what ability to handle such situations they do have, but also, by way of suggestion, convincing many who aren't harmed by such shocks they should be protected, and making them like jellyfish, too. They talk about managing stress "in the best possible way". A good way is not to let yourself be damaged by it and not necessarily go through gymnastics to prepare for it. The best possible is to be on God's side, then there will be no real threat.

Jun 13, 2012
A good way is not to let yourself be damaged by it and not necessarily go through gymnastics to prepare for it. The best possible is to be on God's side, then there will be no real threat.

That is the stupidest thing I've ever heard. The god disease is much more harmful than a stupid app to color code your text messages based on emotion derived from the content.

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