App helps users manage stress

By Nadine Arendse
Johannesburg, 14 Jun 2012

App helps users manage stress

A team from the University of Portsmouth's School of Computing has developed a smartphone app that will help users manage stress, Latest Digitals reports.

The app robotically differentiates good messages from bad, colour codes and makes them green for positive, red for negative and blue for neutral. Moreover, users will be notified whether they want to open the red messages.

The Android phone app, Stress@Work, gives people time to prepare themselves, avoiding the shock of suddenly reading a nasty message sent via Facebook, Twitter or text, Daily Mail writes.

This way, a user can see before opening a message whether it is likely to be worrying or not, BBC notes.

"The application works by learning from past messages how the user perceives the content as being positive, negative or objective," lead researcher Mohamed Gaber told BBC News.

"The ultimate objective... is to make the user aware of the negative contents they receive so they are able to manage their stress in the best possible way.

The scientist added that the app comes "pre-trained", but users are able to self-label any incoming text message to personalise it - as some messages may be perceived in a different way by different users.