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uMove: Interaction through Motion for Ubiquitous Computing Sysems

English title uMove: Interaction through Motion for Ubiquitous Computing Sysems
Applicant Hirsbrunner Béat
Number 130095
Funding scheme Project funding (Div. I-III)
Research institution Département d'Informatique Université de Fribourg
Institution of higher education University of Fribourg - FR
Main discipline Information Technology
Start/End 01.07.2010 - 30.06.2011
Approved amount 57'892.00
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Keywords (11)

Pervasive Computing; Human-Computer Interaction; Context-awareness; Location-awareness; Motion Tracking; Middleware; Unobtrusiveness; Interaction Design; Activity Theory; Situation Theory; User Interfaces

Lay Summary (English)

Lead
Lay summary
Over the last several years, Internet and mobile communication technologies have changed the way users retrieve information and interact with media and services. Personal computing in its original form is disappearing and re-emerging a global distributed system made of several interconnected heterogeneous computational devices such as mobile phones, PDAs and netbooks. This paradigm shift supports the vision of what is commonly called Ubiquitous computing (Ubicomp). In ordinary human-computer interfaces such as Graphical User Interfaces (GUIs) or Tangible User Interfaces (TUIs), users are typically forced to engage a highly focused interaction in order to select the right tasks and achieve the expected goals. When the number of surrounding computing devices significantly increases, it is no longer possible to engage demanding interaction with each of them. During the last ten years, research has been carried out in Ubiquitous Computing and Human Computer Interaction to address the usability problems that arise when adapting old-style interaction models to the new emergent paradigm. Among others we highlight the following issues:•Location-awareness in current Pervasive Computing systems mainly copes with interaction and adaptation of services delivered on mobile devices. Even if it has been enriched in the last 3 years, it is still limited to GUIs and rudimentary forms of multimodal interaction on handheld mobile devices. •Tangible User Interfaces, which are mainly based on the displacement of physical objects, can be extended to wider geographical scale, from an indoor, home/office scale to an outdoor worldwide scale, from “reactive rooms” or “digital desks” to more general “reactive” open spaces.•A new kind of user interface is needed to unleash the true power and usability of Ubiquitous Computing systems which is based on a user's mobility and on their ability to move objects in the physical space.One solution to these problems is to enable interactions based on unobtrusive interfaces where the user’s current activities and motions are taken into account. In this type of interface, a user’s behaviour is observed by the system, which is then capable of detecting what his or her current and possibly future situation is and, if necessary, reacting and/or triggering an event (e.g. informing the user or the system). In this project, we propose to experiment with a new interaction paradigm that we call the Kinetic User Interface (KUI). KUI is an unobtrusive user interface where location-awareness and motion tracking of users and objects in the physical space is considered as a first-order input modality. The main objectives of the uMove project are:1.The development of the theoretical foundations for the KUI model, including a semantic model based on the merging of Activity Theory and Situation Theory.2.The study of new interaction patterns that will be enabled by the KUI model. In some cases and where possible, these patterns will be extensions and adaptations of existing patterns developed for GUIs and TUIs. 3.The design of a framework (uMove) to be used as a standard software architecture for this type of Ubiquitous Computing system. 4.The validation of the KUI model and architecture on two prototypes that require the level of unobtrusiveness that we intend to achieve. We propose to extend for one year the project SNF 116355 which has already given some encouraging results and generated interests within the scientific community. We have so far published eight papers, two of them submitted on invitation. The project extension includes two main tasks:1.Adaptation of theoretical aspects of uMove and the prototypes.2.The development of a visual KUI programming environment (VisualKToolKit).
Direct link to Lay Summary Last update: 21.02.2013

Responsible applicant and co-applicants

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Associated projects

Number Title Start Funding scheme
116355 uMove: Interaction through motion for ubiquitous computing systems 01.07.2007 Project funding (Div. I-III)

Abstract

Over the last several years, Internet and mobile communication technologies have changed the way users retrieve information and interact with media and services. Personal computing in its original form is disappearing and re-emerging a global distributed system made of several interconnected heterogeneous computational devices such as mobile phones, PDAs and netbooks. This paradigm shift supports the vision of what is commonly called Ubiquitous computing (Ubicomp). In ordinary human-computer interfaces such as Graphical User Interfaces (GUIs) or Tangible User Interfaces (TUIs), users are typically forced to engage a highly focused interaction in order to select the right tasks and achieve the expected goals. When the number of surrounding computing devices significantly increases, it is no longer possible to engage demanding interaction with each of them. During the last ten years, research has been carried out in Ubiquitous Computing and Human Computer Interaction to address the usability problems that arise when adapting old-style interaction models to the new emergent paradigm. Among others we highlight the following issues:•Location-awareness in current Pervasive Computing systems mainly copes with interaction and adaptation of services delivered on mobile devices. Even if it has been enriched in the last 3 years, it is still limited to GUIs and rudimentary forms of multimodal interaction on handheld mobile devices. •Tangible User Interfaces, which are mainly based on the displacement of physical objects, can be extended to wider geographical scale, from an indoor, home/office scale to an outdoor worldwide scale, from “reactive rooms” or “digital desks” to more general “reactive” open spaces.•A new kind of user interface is needed to unleash the true power and usability of Ubiquitous Computing systems which is based on a user's mobility and on their ability to move objects in the physical space.One solution to these problems is to enable interactions based on unobtrusive interfaces where the user’s current activities and motions are taken into account. In this type of interface, a user’s behaviour is observed by the system, which is then capable of detecting what his or her current and possibly future situation is and, if necessary, reacting and/or triggering an event (e.g. informing the user or the system). In this project, we propose to experiment with a new interaction paradigm that we call the Kinetic User Interface (KUI). KUI is an unobtrusive user interface where location-awareness and motion tracking of users and objects in the physical space is considered as a first-order input modality. The main objectives of the uMove project are:1.The development of the theoretical foundations for the KUI model, including a semantic model based on the merging of Activity Theory and Situation Theory.2.The study of new interaction patterns that will be enabled by the KUI model. In some cases and where possible, these patterns will be extensions and adaptations of existing patterns developed for GUIs and TUIs. 3.The design of a framework (uMove) to be used as a standard software architecture for this type of Ubiquitous Computing system. 4.The validation of the KUI model and architecture on two prototypes that require the level of unobtrusiveness that we intend to achieve. We propose to extend for one year the project SNF 116355 which has already given some encouraging results and generated interests within the scientific community. We have so far published eight papers, two of them submitted on invitation. The project extension includes two main tasks:1.Adaptation of theoretical aspects of uMove and the prototypes.2.The development of a visual KUI programming environment (VisualKToolKit).
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