Natural User Interfaces


  • Frank Migliorelli, Director of Digital Experience at the New York Public Library, is our guest speaker today and will be presenting this week’s Brown Bag Lunch
  • Project Vision Statements due in 2 weeks (Friday, Oct. 17)

Homework Discussion

Let’s talk about your 1st Exhibition Critiques.

Trend: Natural User Interfaces

According to Wikipedia:

“…a user interface that is (1) effectively invisible, or becomes invisible with successive learned interactions, to its users, and (2) is based on nature or natural elements”

NUI in the news:

NUIs (Natural User Interfaces) are generally divided into several categories:

  • Multi-touch interfaces
  • Gestural Interfaces
  • Speech interfaces
  • Physical Object interfaces


Making a Multi-touch Screen


Remotes & Smart Phones

Depth Cameras

Kinect = Microsoft software + PrimeSense Hardware

PrimeSense open sourced Interface and middleware libraries

Adafruit Bounty + Josh Blake’s OpenKinect

Alternative Depth Cameras

Kinect + Processing Demo


Physical Object Sensors



Conductive Materials

MakeyMakey Demo

Touchboard Demo

Choosing your implementation options

– Who’s your audience?

– What are the characteristics of the exhibition space?

  • Wifi
  • Interference
  • Lighting

– What’s easiest, least invasive, least effort for your users (how can you make the technology “disappear”)?

– What’s simplest to implement?

– What is most maintainable/durable?

– What fits in your budget?

Functional Prototype Ideas

      • Gallery Space Map Document Interface
      • Studio II Game Console Simulation
      • Personal Computer Model 00 Simulation
      • Please Touch Lego Phonograph

Homework Assignment 6a (5 points)

  1. Read the following: (1 point)
    • Elements of Innovation (pp 84-94)
  2. Create a new page in your Design Notebook with the heading “Inventing the Future V” (1 point)
  3. Look through the Collection Opening Items listingthe associated item texts and the collection bibliography. Which Collection Opening items & references relate to the chapters above? Search the bibliography sources for more information on one or more of the items. What sort of interactive experience could you create to demonstrate the items; how they work, or the context in which they were developed? Write down your thoughts in your Design Notebook & cite your references. (3 points)

Assignment 6b  (5 points, 1 point each)

  1. Read the 2012 NMC Horizon Report pp 31-35
  2. Create a new page in your Design Notebook with the heading “Natural User Interfaces”
  3. Take a look at some of the examples of natural user interfaces currently used in museums on pp 33 & 34 of the Horizon Report and write a paragraph about your favorite example.
  4. Can you find any other examples of the “Natural User Interfaces” being used “in the wild”?  Jot down a brief description & a link to what you find in your Design Notebook.

Submitting Your Work This week’s homework assignments are due by next Thurs, Oct. 9, at 5:00 pm EST. When you’ve completed them, post a comment on this page (Natural User Interfaces), including a link to your Design Notebook.

Project Vision Statements

Your Project Vision Statements are due in 2 weeks on Oct 17. Here’s the template for the assignment.

Studio Time

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