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The brave new world of Natural User Interfaces

Multi-touch is one of the most talked-about interaction paradigms, with the iPhone raising awareness of what’s possible. But even single-touch screens and the burgeoning trend of multi-user interfaces represent significant interface design challenges.

Removing the mouse, the keyboard, and even menus and buttons from the user experience might seem radical, but therein lies the path to the natural user interface, or NUI, which could herald a major shift in interface design.

At the Wellington UPA (Usabilty Professionals Association) Spring event Zef talked about the basics of designing for touchscreens and gestural interfaces and looked at what’s happening in NZ and overseas.

Zef’s focus is ‘experience design’, which encapsulates user research, interaction design and information architecture.

Published in: Technology, Business


  1. 2. DON’T GET GUI : GET NUI! the brave new world of gestural interfaces ZEF FUGAZ
  2. 3. Olympics – 319sqm. NUI by Reactrix, LEDs by Barko
  3. 4. Olympics – 319sqm. NUI by Reactrix, LEDs by Barko
  4. 5. <ul><li>[notes] </li></ul>Bad for humans
  5. 6. “… we’re using bodies evolved for hunting, gathering, and gratuitous violence for information-age tasks like world processing and spreadsheet tweaking…” <ul><li>David Liddle </li></ul>
  6. 7. <ul><li>[notes] </li></ul>x Kill the mouse!
  7. 8. Minority Report – no longer fiction
  8. 9. <ul><li>[notes] </li></ul>
  9. 10. A quick history… Diagram :
  10. 11. Where we’re at… <ul><li>The past CLI : Command Line Interface </li></ul><ul><li>Now GUI : Graphical User Interface </li></ul><ul><li>Near future NUI : Natural User Interface </li></ul><ul><li>Future OUI : Organic User Interface </li></ul>
  11. 12. Workshop <ul><li>[notes] </li></ul>
  12. 13. <ul><li>[notes] </li></ul>First mainstream gestural device?
  13. 14. Not just for kids
  14. 15. Injury rehab centers have been using Nintendo Wii's
  15. 16. <ul><li>[notes] </li></ul>Even cats can Wii
  16. 18. Workshop <ul><li>[notes] </li></ul>
  17. 19. Workshop <ul><li>[notes] </li></ul>SIGGRAPH 2008 : Just wave you hands in the air!
  18. 20. Workshop <ul><li>[notes] </li></ul>SIGGRAPH 2008 : Just wave you hands in the air!
  19. 21. Click Suite’s interactive coffee table
  20. 22. Dan Saffer / Tap is the New Click Experience Design Director at Adaptive Path
  21. 23. “… a GESTURE is any physical movement that can be sensed and responded to by a digital system without the aid of a traditional input device such as a mouse or stylus…” <ul><li>Dan Saffer </li></ul>
  22. 24. Types of interactive gestures <ul><li>Touchscreen – single and multi-touch </li></ul><ul><li>Free-form – wide variety </li></ul>
  23. 25. Sensors <ul><li>Pressure </li></ul><ul><li>Light </li></ul><ul><li>Proximity </li></ul><ul><li>Acoustic </li></ul><ul><li>Tilt </li></ul><ul><li>Motion </li></ul><ul><li>Orientation </li></ul>
  24. 26. Diagram : Dan Saffer
  25. 27. Challenges / Fun with Fingers <ul><li>Fingernails </li></ul><ul><li>Fake nails </li></ul><ul><li>Finger oil </li></ul><ul><li>Finger prints </li></ul><ul><li>Accessibility </li></ul><ul><li>Wrist support </li></ul><ul><li>Gloves </li></ul><ul><li>Inaccurate </li></ul>
  26. 28. Workshop <ul><li>[notes] </li></ul>Diagram : Dan Saffer
  27. 29. Darren David & Nathan Moody Stimulant
  28. 30. Challenges / Large Scale Displays 1440px 1050px 1440px x 1050px @ 6’ x 4’ = 20ppi
  29. 31. Challenges / Zones of Engagement ATTRACT: 3m
  30. 32. Challenges / Zones of Engagement ATTRACT: 3m
  31. 33. Challenges / Zones of Engagement INFORM: 1.5m
  32. 34. Challenges / Zones of Engagement ENGAGE: 0.5m
  33. 35. Challenges / Reading Zone Centre of user focus : 400px
  34. 36. Dennis Wixon User Research Manager - Microsoft Surface Computing.
  35. 37. Microsoft Surface
  36. 38. REALITY CHECK?
  37. 39. NUI in Govt GIS for Crisis Management? (Pictured: DAVE_G prototype)
  38. 40. NUI in Govt Transport? Photo by kpmarek
  39. 41. NUI in Govt Transport?
  40. 42. NUI in Govt Tourism?
  41. 43. NUI in Govt Property Reports?
  42. 44. NUI in Govt Voting? The opinions expressed here are my own personal opinions and do not necessarily represent my employer's view in any way.
  43. 45. <ul><li>[notes] </li></ul>Mission : Kill the mice!
  44. 46. <ul><li>[notes] </li></ul>x
  45. 47. [email_address]