Interfaces for Public Spaces

Boriana Koleva

(Nottingham University)

A growing focus for HCI research has been the development of interactive technologies for public spaces such as galleries, museums, stations, shopping malls and city streets. This talk presents work in the development of interfaces for public settings and discusses the emerging design challenges in this area.

The talk begins by describing two interfaces that have been deployed in a museum: the Augurscope, a mobile outdoors interface that enables visitors to view 3D historical reconstructions when exploring present day sites, and the Storytent, an interface in the form of an A-frame tent, where two projectors throw different but synchronised images onto its surface while surrounding speakers play sounds.

This is followed by presenting ongoing work that focuses on exploring how best to integrate mobile devices with public situated installations to enable users to engage in a series of activities as part of a coherent experience, and exploring unobtrusive vision techniques to classify visitor behaviour around situated displays in order to dynamically configure the content shown on displays and the available interaction techniques.

The talk concludes by reflecting on the additional challenges that have to be addressed when developing interfaces for public settings. Issues include designing the physical form factor, allowing learnability-at-a-distance, providing different means of engagement, encouraging collaboration and managing the overall experience.

Tuesday 15th April 2008, 14:00
Robert Recorde Room
Department of Computer Science