Informative Art display systems have been proposed to provide users with information considered relevant at arbitrary points of work or living engagement, originating from many different –mostly geographically dislocated– sources and presented at the periphery of human (visual) perception. Having the displays operate at the periphery of a user’s attention allows other user tasks to sustain primary. Much like the information presented by wallclocks, posters, paintings or windows, peripheral displays move to the center of attention only when appropriate and desirable. Abstract art has been proposed to serve as the visualization paradigm, encoding information into graphical or pictorial artwork by subtly modifying its shape, color and appearance details or its overall impression. This paper approaches a systematic elaboration of visual metaphors able to deliver information via peripheral displays in an aesthetic, artful way. In our approach, the choice of metaphors is driven by the aesthetic appeal of the visual appearance of the display as a whole, out of which certain dynamic emblems or symbols are used to conotate information in a visual style. From experiments we find, that such metaphors are considered by users as a means of personal emotional expression, and that controllable aesthetic attractiveness turns out to be the dominant factor of display appreciation. The choice of aesthetic themes, as well as the control of emblem and symbol dynamics are supported and implemented in our peripheral display framework, a general purpose software framework for informative art display systems.


pervasive display systems informative art peripheral displays ambient intelligence intelligent user interfaces 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Ames, M., Bettadapur, C., Dey, A.K., Mankoff, J.: Healthy Cities Ambient Displays. Extended Abstracts of UbiComp (2003),
  2. 2.
    De Guzman, E.S.M.S.: Thesis: Presence Displays: Tangible Peripheral Displays for Promoting Awareness and Connectedness, University of California, Berkeley (December 2004)Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    De Guzman, E.S., Yau, M., Gagliano, A., Park, A., Dey, A.K.: Exploring the design and use of peripheral displays of awareness information. In: CHI 2004 Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems, pp. 1247–1250. ACM Press, New York (2004)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Ferscha, A.: Workspace Awareness in Mobile Virtual Teams. In: Proceedings of the 9th International Workshops on Enabling Technologies: Infrastructures for Collaborative Enterprises (WETICE 2000), pp. 272–277. IEEE Computer Society Press, Los Alamitos (2000)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Ferscha, A., Emsenhuber, B., Schmitzberger, H., Thon, P.: Aesthetic Awareness Displays. Advances in Pervasive Computing 2006. In: Adjunct Proceedings of the 4th International Conference on Pervasive Computing. Vol. 207, Austrian Computer Society (OCG), Vienna (2006)Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Ferscha, A., Johnson, J.: Distributed Interaction in Virtual Spaces. In: Proc. of the 3rd International WS on Distributed Interactive Simulation and Real Time Applications, IEEE Computer Society Press, Los Alamitos (1999)Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Gutwin, C., Greensberg, S.: A Framework of Awareness for Small Groups in Shared-Workspace Groupware. Technical report 99-1, Department of Computer Science, University of Saskatchewan, Canada,
  8. 8.
    Heiner, J., Hudson, S., Tanaka, K.: The Information Percolator: Ambient Information Display in a Decorative Object. In: ACM Symp. on User Interface Software and Techn. pp. 141–148. ACM Press, New York (1999)Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Ho-Ching, F.-W., Mankoff, J., Landay, J.A.: Can you see what I hear? The Design and Evaluation of a Peripheral Sound Display for the Deaf. Group for User Interface Research, Computer Science Division, University of Berkeley,
  10. 10.
    Holmquist, L.E.: Evaluating the comprehension of ambient displays. In: CHI 2004 Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems, ACM Press, New York (2004)Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Hsieh, G., Mankoff, J.: Peripheral Displays Evaluation,
  12. 12.
    Ishii, H., Ullmer, B.: Tangible Bits: Towards Seamless Interfaces between People, Bits and Atoms. In: Proceedings of the Conference on Human Factors in Computing systems, pp. 234–241. ACM Press, New York (1997)Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Mankoff, J., Dey, A.K.: From conception to design: a practical guide to designing ambient displays. In: Ohara, K., Churchill, E. (eds.) Public and Situated Displays, Kluwer, Dordrecht (2003), Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Mankoff, J., Dey, A.K., Hsieh, G., Kientz, J., Lederer, S., Ames, M.: Heuristic Evaluation of Ambient Displays. EECS Department, University of Berkeley. In: Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, pp. 169–176. ACM Press, New York (2003), Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Matthews, T., Dey, A.K., Mankoff, J., Carter, S., Rattenbury, T.: A toolkit for managing user attention in peripheral displays. In: Proceedings of the 17th Annual ACM Symposium on User interface Software and Technology UIST 2004, Santa Fe, NM, USA, October 24-27, 2004, pp. 247–256. ACM Press, New York (2004), CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Matthews, T., Rattenbury, T., Carter, S., Dey, A.K., Mankoff, J.: A Peripheral Display Toolkit. EECS Department, University of California, Berkeley Technotes, UCB//CSD-03- (2003) (1258),
  17. 17.
    McCarthy, J.F., Costa, T.J., Huang, E.M., Tullio, J.: Defragmenting the organization: Disseminating community knowledge through peripheral displays. In: Workshop on Community Knowledge at the 7th European Conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work, ECSCW, pp. 117–126 ( 2001)Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Miller, T., Stasko, J.: The InfoCanvas: information conveyance through personalized, expressive art. In: CHI 2001 Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems, pp. 305–306. ACM Press, New York (2001)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Mynatt, E., Rowan, J., Jacobs, A., Craighill, S.: Digital Family Portraits: Supporting Peace of Mind for Extended Family Members. In: Proceedings of the SIGCHI conference on Human factors in computing systems, pp. 333–340. ACM Press, New York (2001)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Prante, T., Stenzel, R., Röcker, C., Streitz, N., Magerkurth, C.: Ambient agoras: InfoRiver, SIAM, Hello.Wall. In: CHI 2004 Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI 2004), Vienna, Austria, April 24 - 29, 2004, pp. 763–764. ACM Press, New York (2004)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Redström, J., Skog, T., Hallnäs, L.: Informative art: using amplified artworks as information displays. In: Proceedings of DARE 2000 on Designing Augmented Reality Environments, pp. 103–114. ACM Press, New York (2000)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    Streitz, N., Magerkurth, C., Prante, T., Röcker, C.: From information design to experience design: smart artefacts and the disappearing computer. Interactions 12(4), 21–25 (2005)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. 23.
    Streitz, N.A., Nixon, P.: The Disappearing Computer. Guest Editors’ Introduction to Special Issue. Communications of the ACM 48, 33–35 (2005)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. 24.
    Streitz, N.A., Rocker, C., Prante, T., Alphen, D.: Designing Smart Artifacts for Smart Environments. IEEE Computer 38,3, 41–49 (March 2005)Google Scholar
  25. 25.
    Walker, K.: Interactive and Informative Art. IEEE MultiMedia 10(1), 4–10 (2003)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. 26.
    Wisneski, C.: Ambient Displays: Turning Architectural Space into an Interface between People and Digital Information. In: Streitz, N.A., Konomi, S., Burkhardt, H.-J. (eds.) CoBuild 1998. LNCS, vol. 1370, pp. 22–32. Springer, Heidelberg (1998)Google Scholar
  27. 27.
    Xiong, R., Donath, J.: PeopleGarden: creating data portraits for users. In: Proceedings of the 12th annual ACM symposium on User interface software and technology (UIST 1999), pp. 37–44. ACM Press, New York (1999)CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alois Ferscha
    • 1
  1. 1.Institut für Pervasive Computing, Johannes Kepler Universität Linz, Altenberger Strasse 69, 4040 LinzAustria

Personalised recommendations