Oldenburg Computer Science Series

Univ.-Prof. Dr. Susanne Boll,
Univ.-Prof. Dr. Sebastian Lehnhoff (Hrsg.)

Tobias Hesselmann

Designing User Interfaces for Interactive Tabletops

Interactive Tabletops contribute to intuitive and efficient access to digital information in various domains, including computer-supported cooperative work, education, entertainment, and public exhibitions. They are typically based on large, horizontal touch-screens, enabling users (1) to directly manipulate visualized objects on the surface without using external input and output devices; (2) to execute application functions by performing touch-based gestures on the system’s surface; and (3) to engage in multi-user interaction using the same system, at the same place, and at the same time. These properties create rich opportunities for creating engaging user interfaces, but also induce substantial design challenges. This thesis aims to comprehensively address these challenges by providing concrete guidance to designers and developers of tabletop user interfaces.

The distinct physical characteristics and interaction paradigms of interactive tabletops differ substantially from established concepts of traditional desktop computing. Thus, designers, developers and researchers working with tabletop devices need to adapt established design processes and methods to consider these issues appropriately. This thesis addresses these issues in different regards: First, it reviews the specific physical properties and interaction paradigms of interactive tabletops and identifies corresponding challenges and influence factors for user interface design. Second, it derives methods to create tabletop user interfaces providing a satisfying user experience. And third, it proposes a user-centered and iterative design process for interactive tabletop systems - SCIVA - providing holistic guidance for system designers and developers. The process consists of five steps to define tasks of the user interface, to specify and adapt visualizations for tabletop systems, to derive functions of the user interface, to define an appropriate gesture vocabulary, and to evaluate the resulting user interface. The practical applicability of the process is assessed based on three case studies that applied SCIVA in realistic development projects.

Bd. 22, XII, 223 S., Edewecht 2012, € 49,80
ISBN-13 978-3-939704-88-1