Personalized Notification Management

A Notification Management Tool Designed According to Users' Specific Information Needs

Lead: Joanna McGrenere


watch with notifications on screen

It has never been so difficult to remain focused on a given task without interruption. Attention spans are dwindling as people are inundated by constant notifications across their various devices, from smartphones to desktop computers. The solution is not straightforward, with few people opting to block notifications altogether. The design challenge is that individuals vary in which notifications they value. We have shown, for example, that older adults tend to only value notifications that enable urgent communication with close friends, family and work contacts. Younger adults, by contrast, tend to be open to a broader range of notifications. Yet it is very difficult for users of any age to customize their notifications in a nuanced way. We are designing a notification management tool that allows users to easily personalize notifications from a variety of sources according to their needs.