Clifford I. Nass
Thomas M. Storke Professor at Stanford University
Ph.D., Sociology, Princeton University
M.A., Sociology, Princeton University
B.A., Mathematics cum laude, Princeton University
Clifford Nass is the Thomas M. Storke Professor at Stanford University; he has been a professor at Stanford since 1986. His primary appointment is in Communication, but he also has appointments by courtesy in Computer Science, Education, Law, and Sociology, and is affiliated with the programs in Science, Technology, and Society and Symbolic Systems (cognitive science).
Nass's new book, The Man Who Lied to His Laptop: What Machines Teach Us About Human Relationships, is now available for purchase. For more information about the book, please see its website.
Nass has two primary areas of research.
- Laboratory and field experimental studies of social-psychological aspects of human-interactive media interaction. Specifically, Nass discovered that people use the same rules and heuristics when interacting with computers, automobiles, cellphones, robots, and other interactive technology as they do when interacting with other people. This approach is called the "Computers are Social Actors" (CASA) paradigm or "The Media Equation" (media equals real life). He has published over 100 experiments using this research paradigm.
- Laboratory and field experimental studies and surveys concerning chronic media multitasking. His paper demonstrating that heavy media multitaskers are poor at multitasking and at a number of cognitive control processes was one of the most covered paper in the social sciences in the last 12 months.
- Automobile Interfaces
- Mobile Interfaces
- Cognitive and Social Effects of Multitasking
- Human-Robot Interaction
- Adaptive and Personalized Systems
- Voice Interfaces
Nass is also co-director of the Kozmetsky Global Collaboratory and the Center for Automotive Research at Stanford University (CARS).
Nass is the author of three books:
- The media equation: How people treat computers, television, and new media like real people and places (with Byron Reeves; Cambridge University Press)
- Wired for speech: How voice activates and advances the human-computer relationship (with Scott Brave; MIT Press), which won the International Communication Association Outstanding Book Award for 2007
- The man who lied to his laptop: What computers can teach us about human relationships (with Corina Yen; Penguin/Current)
As a consultant, Nass has applied his research to over 250 media products and services for companies including Microsoft, Toyota, Nissan, BMW, Philips, Sony, Time-Warner, Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Charles Schwab, and Fidelity.