HEBE Outline<br />What: Novel interfaces for playing, interacting and reading e-books for children <br />How: By building a collaborative/participatory design environment<br />Why: There are lot of generic e-readers no one specific for children. Native digital?<br />Where: Libraries, nurseries, schools, homes (?)<br />Who: Children of three different age groups: 3-5, 6-9, 10-12. Other stakeholders like parents, teachers and book experts.<br />
Background<br />Findings of a series of users studies (e.g. Wilson et al, 2003; Landoni et al, 2001; Malama et al, 2005; Landoni and Hanlon, 2004)on how adults interact with e-books in different scenarios of use (including education and entertainment)<br />HEBE will explore how children can be involved into the design and evaluation of novel, engaging, intuitive interfaces. <br />
Aim and Purpose<br />Make the reading experience more attractive to younger audience<br />Involve children in exploring different type of technology, hardware and software, in order to produce more engaging, usable and fun e-book interfaces for them.<br />
Hypothesis<br />… in order to make e-reading a fun experience for children, new innovative interfaces are needed and children have to take an active role in their design.<br />
Research Questions<br />Can e-books for children add extra value to the reading experience?<br />Are e-book models developed for adults still valid for children books or should these be expanded or even completely reconsidered to take into consideration specific children needs?<br />Are new design approaches needed in order to make children e-books fun and usable?<br />How children of different ages interact with e-books?<br />Do different ages need different e-book models?<br />What are the main activities related to reading, children would perform on e-books and how can these be better supported?<br />How can children be effectively involved in the design of children e-books?<br />How can children be effectively involved in the evaluation of children e-books?<br />
Children Books<br />Attractive and let children explore them in different ways.<br />Engaging pop-ups, opening flaps, scanimations, etc…<br />Reading as part of the experience of interacting with a book, unique and personal to each child.<br />As young children are supervised in their experience by adults it turns into a social moment.<br />
Books Beyond the Content<br />Objects (containers) as well as content. Appearance and presentation as important as content.<br />Ways into an imaginary world where children, even before being able to read, freely interact with them in all sort of creative way.<br />Building block! Pages can turn into puzzles, maps and circuits, covers into crowns, frames and cut-out dolls<br />Boundaries between children books and games are very fuzzy.<br />
The International Children's Digital Library, (ICDL),<br />declared goal "... to excite and inspire the world's children to become members of the global community” see:<br />http://en.childrenslibrary.org/<br />
Paper vs Electronic Books<br />Paper has often been accused of being passive, static and a real limitation to authors’ and readers’ creativity. <br />Paper books for children are great examples of the contrary.<br />Designing interactive e-books for children in competition with paper is a big challenge.<br />
Technology and Reading<br />Tangible, ubiquitous, wearable devices that together with an environment supporting multimedia can make interacting with a book a really multi-sensory immersive experience.<br />We will explore a number of platforms and devices and exploit their potential as book support.<br />
Encouraging Reading<br /><ul><li>Local and international initiatives to engage children in reading.
Libraries, teachers, parents: all stakeholders.
In Ticino and Italy: Born to read (Nati per leggere). </li></li></ul><li>And Now?<br />We are organizing a series of user studies involving children in different relevant settings<br />Different e-readers<br />A bookshelf of titles of real interest to children<br />In paper and electronic format<br />Building a Bookshelf for children is a little project per se, partially sponsored by Microsoft Research, Cambridge.<br />
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