Towards a Playful User Interface for Home Entertainment Systems

  • Florian Block
  • Albrecht Schmidt
  • Nicolas Villar
  • Hans W. Gellersen
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 3295)


In this paper we propose a tangible cube as an input device for playfully changing between different TV-channels. First we consider several design approaches and compare them. Based on a cube that has embedded gravity sensing and wireless communication capabilities a prototype is implemented. A 3D graphical representation of the cube is shown on the television screen. On each face of the cube a TV stream is rendered. The motion of the cube on the screen is connected to the rotation the user performs using the real tangible cube. Our hypotheses is that users can use the cube to browse between channels and to zap intuitively and playfully gaining a improved user experience even if the efficiency is limited compared to a remote control. We report on initial user feedback testing our hypothesis in witch we found out that users can easily use the cube without instructions and, despite technical limitations, see it as an improvement of current systems. Finally we discuss the issues that emerged from user’s feedback.


Remote Control Full Screen Graphic Engine Improve User Experience Wireless Communication Capability 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Florian Block
    • 1
    • 2
  • Albrecht Schmidt
    • 1
  • Nicolas Villar
    • 2
  • Hans W. Gellersen
    • 2
  1. 1.Embedded Interaction GroupUniversity of MunichGermany
  2. 2.Computing DepartmentLancaster UniversityUK

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