Gesture and NUI workshop August 5-9

Jody Medich of Kicker Studio will be teaching a workshop at UC Berkeley that sounds quite good:

Gestural and Natural User Interfaces

Physical interfaces are understood, learned and experienced through the body and should allow for more natural interactions that fit the way we think. This workshop will explore how to design natural user interfaces that are, in fact, natural. Workshop participants interested in responsive environments, interactive displays, gesture, touch and haptics will learn how to prototype interfaces, design gestural languages, and test and refine designs with user testing. Participants will be given tutorials in gestural prototyping technologies, understanding the context of use, and user experience design. Workshop exercises include designing context-based gesture sets using the Kinect, and developing screen-based gestures using the LEAP SDK.

Link: Design Frontiers Workshop Series

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The Rise of Tap-and-Hold

Here’s an interesting article at fast.co design about the clever use of the tap-and-hold gesture in two hot apps, Vine and Snapchat (or at least they were hot apps two weeks ago when this article was written).

On Vine it makes it super simple to record by touching the screen anywhere without having to locate a virtual button. I’d argue it’d be simpler still to use the phone’s physical volume button, though.

In Snapchat the gesture is clever for the inconvenience it causes — it intentionally makes it more difficult for users to take screenshots because they have to hold a finger on the screen while viewing content.

Link: The Secret Sauce Gesture Behind Vine and Snapchat

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UPA 2012 next week

Hello blog (& blog readers). Sorry for my absence of late. I’m hoping to get back into the swing of things soon.

Meanwhile, I’ll be at UPA 2012 next week in Las Vegas. I’m look forward to learning and chatting about touch, gestures, mobile, physical interfaces, and the many other exciting UX things that people are up to. I hope to see you there!

In other news, I’m now working as a Senior UX Researcher at Lab126 in Cupertino. We’re hiring UX people so if you’re interested please get in touch.

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Limitations of touchscreens

I like Edward Tufte’s take on Brett Victor’s recent essay, A Brief Rant on the Future of Interaction Design. Tufte’s comments are here: Touchscreens have no hand

A favorite line: “Dimensional compression is dimensional compression, however, and even those sentient beings that reside in string-theory N space probably whine that their N – 1 dimensional display device (necessary to fit in their N – 1 dimensional pockets) fails to capture the rich experience of their real N space.”

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