User experience research has made considerable progress in understanding subjective experience with interactive technology. Nevertheless, we argue, some blind spots have remained: individual differences are frequently ignored, the prevalent measures of self-report rarely undergo verification, and overly focus is on utilitarian and hedonic dimensions of experience.
A Stroop priming experiment was constructed to assess what people implicitly associate with a picture of a computing device. Three categories of target words were presented: hedonic, utilitarian and "geek" words. Longer response times were interpreted as stronger associations. Need-for-cognition and subject of undergraduate study (computer science vs. psychology) were taken as predictors for a hypothetical geek personality. The results suggest that persons with a geek predisposition tend to think of computers as objects of intellectual challenge and play, rather than tools or extensions of the self.