Tuesday, June 2, 2009

DSI Test 3 & White Space Exhibition

I showcased the MeeTTable on Friday 5th June 2009 at the White Space Exhibition. White Space is a showcase of the very best work from the graduates of the Visual Communications & Multimedia Honours Degree programmes at the Cork Institute of Technology. Check out the link below for more info

White Space Exhibition

I am currently still testing the hardware and software. There are still a few issues to resolve. I will need to get a short throw projector and fix issues relating to how the videos are currently playing. Below is a video taken showing usability tests.

DSI Test 3

Monday, May 18, 2009

DSI Tests 2 Collaborative Design Planning Application

Testing Collaborative Design Planning Application, Canvas Application and 3D animation

Currently conducting some more usability tests on the collaborative design planning application, a small drawing canvas application, and a 3D animation.

Tests showed that the size of interactive graphics such as the buttons and frames of the storyboard will need to be scaled up. The drawing application will have to be considered or tested with a stylus pen. The occlusion of graphics scaling over other items is also an issue. More tests in relation to the 3D design section will be carried out. Here are here some images illustrating how the interface is developing. Also below is a video demonstrating usability testing.

Below is a video of the usability tests.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

DSI Test with Tracker/Demo/My App

I have tested my DSI Multi-touch Table with the latest release of CCV - Community Core Vision(formally known as tbeta). Once the table was calibrated with CCV, I then tested some demo application and the first version of my collaborative design planning application. There are some issues which I will have to resolve such as latency, also more consideration in relation to the legibility of typography on screen and occlusion. I will carry out much more user testing to identify other issues. Below is a small video showing my tests on the DSI MT table.

Early Interface Template above

Download Community Core Vision - http://nuicode.com/projects/tbeta

Friday, May 1, 2009

DSI Multi-touch Table Built

Finally my Multi-touch table has been built. It is circular as I think it will support the collaborative process more effectively. For example a four sided conventional table limits and restricts where people should be located at a table. Also I wanted enough space on the table for people to place items such as pen and paper, phone, cups etc.

Here are some photos of the multi-touch meeting table taken in the lab. More photos can also be seen on my flickr - http://www.flickr.com/photos/citphotography/

Monday, April 27, 2009


Here is a project which is very applicable for my research. They have carried out extensive research into collaboration using tabletops. Here I have found many interesting publications, applications which they have developed and the findings from their research studies. Below is a video which illustrate how multi-touch table tops and interactive tangible can support group meetings.

About the ShareIT Project

The interdisciplinary ShareIT project, funded by the UK's EPSRC (2007-2010), is investigating how a new generation of shareable technologies, that are designed specifically for more than one person to use at a time, can enable groups to collaborate more effectively - be it learning maths, planning seating allocation, conducting financial forecasting or socialising. The technologies include gesture-based wall displays, multi-touch tabletops and interactive tangibles.

shareIT website link - http://shareitproject.org/index.php?page=Home

A short video outlining a study into the benefits of tabletop collaboration

HealthVault & Amalga on Surface

Here is a great example of collaboration on a Microsoft surface.

Healthvault & Amalga intergrated on Microsoft Surface - A very impressive application where patient and physician collaborate. The application supports the consultation process where the physician and patient can directly interact with patient data such as x-rays, videos of ultra-sounds, The physician can bring up a 3D model of the patient. Whilst directly interacting the 3D model the physician can show specific information such as the heart or circulation for example. The physician can also drop data into the patients healthvault where they can view the information later such as at home. This application can greatly benefit both health care professional and their patients.

Video Link - http://vimeo.com/4081128

Monday, April 20, 2009

Meeting with Research Partners

Last weekend I met with research partners Emedia at their offices in Galway. Here we discussed storyboards showing the interface and interaction design for the collaborative design planning application. I then setup the Multi-touch hardware for them to test while I did some observational research. They tested some demo applications such as a photo and annotation application. Meeting with research partners Emedia has been very beneficial as their skills in the area of multimedia development has been very insightful and applicable to the development of my Multi-touch application. Here is an image from our meeting at Emedia offices.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

New DSI Multi-touch Table

A new Multi-touch Meeting table is currently being developed. Last week I received the Endlighten Acrylic from professional plastics. I also received the diffuser which is a Lee Filter 225 Natural Density Frost. This filter is used for projection and touch surfaces, The material is good as it is less susceptible to dirt and the surface is smoother for interaction. Here are images from the construction of the new table. More images can be view on my Flickr - www.flickr.com/photos/citphotography/

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Papvervision 3D, Flash, Flex Tutorials

I am currently learning Papervision3D and Flex as they will primarily be the development tools I will use for the collaborative design planning application. I am looking at how to implement Papervision3D within Flex using an ActionScript project. I have also looked at exporting 3D models from C4d as collada(.dae) files. The collada files are supported by flash as a 3D model is specified as an XML file which contains the properties of the model.

Therefore I have been looking at

1. Developing 3D models files in Cinema 4D

2. Exporting them as Collada - .dae files

3. Implementing Papervision3D within Flex a actionscript project.

4. Getting Papervision3D to load in the collada .dae files

5. Applying Multi-touch interactivity to the 3D objects

I have found several useful tutorials online. Here are links to the tutorials -

http://www.madvertices.com/ - Papervison Tutorials

- Papervision 3D Core Training
- Advanced Materials
Effects, Filters & Modifiers
- Animation
- Exercises:
- Random Tips & Info:
- Swift 3D Support:


Flex / Actionscript development tutorials that shows you how to use the Papervision 3D engine to create 3D Flash effects such as changing materials on 3D models

Flash Multi-touch Tutorials

- Building Your First Multi-touch Application
- Demo ready to go examples
- Flash forum


- Importing Cinema4D model into Papervision 3D

Monday, March 30, 2009

Hardware Setup Tests

Since receiving my IR Ribbon Flex from environmental lights I have been testing some demo multi-touch applications. The next stage is to build casing and a frame for the the IR ribbon flex. I will also be purchasing a good projection screen such as rosco grey and a more complient touch surface such as sulky solvy.

Here are some photos from hardware testing.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Designing Gestural Interfaces

Developing preliminary interface and interaction designs over the last few weeks, I have created rough storyboards, and flowcharts illustrating how the interface should look and function. Research papers and books such as "Designing Gestural Interfaces" by Dan Saffer has informed me of the considerations when developing collaborative interfaces.

The book covers areas such as -

- Designing Interactive Gestures

- The Characteristics of Good Gestural Interfaces

- The Attributes of Gestures

- Interface Conventions

- Appropriate Gesture - Matching the Gesture to the behaviour

Below is some photos showing some of my storyboards and drawings.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

VitruView App for Microsoft Surface

I was doing some research trying to find some multi-touch apps which focus on interaction with 3D environments and models. I came across a very interesting multi-touch app (VitruView) which was developed for Surface. It really is one of the most inspiring apps i have seen so far. VitruView was designed to help with angiography procedures in a catheter lab ? it is essentially a 3d multi-touch application for heart surgeries that persists data in Microsoft HealtVault. links below -

Video demo

Interknowlogy homepage


I am currently developing a paper prototype of a collaborative design planning application. Whilst developing my paper prototype I have been reading research papers which have enabled me to consider issues in relation to the interface design and interaction design. These research papers have investigated and analyzed how tabletop displays such as multi-touch platforms support collaborative work. I have therefore applied many of the design guidelines to my development. I have found related work by Stacey D. Scott et al very insightful. Listed below are a list of research papers which I have read by Stacey D. Scott. You can also check out my delicious research bookmarks here - http://delicious.com/project4

Scott, S., Grant, K., Carpendale, S., Inkpen, K., Mandryk, R., & Winograd, T. (2002). Co-located Tabletop Collaboration: Technologies and Directions. Workshop at CSCW 2002, in Extended Abstracts of the ACM Conference on Computer-Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW)'02, November 16-20, 2002, New Orleans, LA, USA. (Workshop Webpage)

Inkpen, K., Mandryk, R., Scott, S., Greenberg, S., & Zanella, A. (2000). Shared Environments to Support Face-to-Face Collaboration. Workshop at CSCW 2000: In Conference Supplement of the ACM Conference on Computer-Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW)'00, Dec. 2-6, 2000, Philadelphia, PA, USA. (Workshop Webpage)

Scott, S.D. & Carpendale, S. (2006). Investigating Tabletop Territoriality in Digital Tabletop Workspaces, Technical Report 2006-836-29, Department of Computer Science, University of Calgary, Calgary, AB, Canada.

Scott, S.D., Carpendale, M.S.T., & Inkpen, K.M. (2004). Exploring Casual Tabletop Interactions. Technical Report 2004-742-07. Department of Computer Science, University of Calgary, Calgary, AB, Canada.

Scott, Stacey D. (2005). Territoriality in Collaborative Tabletop Workspaces. Ph.D. Dissertation, Department of Computer Science, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada, Defended March 2005.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Diffused Illumination

Here are images from my first multi-touch table which was based on a Diffused Illumination setup. I also bulit an application in Flash coding in AS3. It is an elearning application where users navigate a multi-touch lab (3D environment).

To progress to different areas of the lab they have to accomplish a multi-touch task such as learning a new gesture(rotate, drag, scale). Throughout the tour of the multi-touch lab they also learn about the development of multi-touch technology

Multi-touch Meeting Room Table

I am currently in the early stages of building a multi-touch meeting room table and a design planning application for the purpose of planning and organising the development of 3D projects.

The multi-touch table will allow 3d visualisation designers to plan and organise the development of projects. They can align design and operational
specifications to 3D models, or they can also organise and plan out storyboards, flowcharts and layouts.

The affordances of multi-touch technology offer a more intuitive and natural interaction with interfaces. There is great potential to develop callaborative applications which take advantage of multi-touch technology.

The hardware setup is (DSI) - Difused Surface Illumination. Below is a video illustrating the DSI setup