Expressive Interaction

Expression, “the action of making known one’s thoughts or feelings”, relates to the conveyance of ideas and emotion through the manipulation of a medium. In music, for example, expression inhabits the nuances of a performance and is often associated with communicating emotion or evoking an emotional response in the audience. Similarly, in art a work is said to be expressive if it arouses a particular feeling or emotion in an observer. If HCI is to contribute to the design of expressive interaction, it needs methods that are sensitive to the more nuanced spaces of user activity that expression inhabits. Moreover, a deeper understanding of expressive interaction would assist those wishing to design for the growing body of expressive and creative users of technology and would provide a distinct standpoint from which novel ideas about interaction may be developed.

This PhD, therefore, provides an analysis of the important qualities of interaction for one group of users for whom expression is pivotal: video-jockeys (VJs). Our findings provide a novel perspective on expressive interaction, which has the potential to inspire and guide future discussion of the topic in HCI.

We have created a multi-touch interface for VJing (the live performance of visualmedia) called Waves.

Start Date: Sept 2007

Project Supervisor: Patrick Olivier, Peter Wright, John McCarthy (University College Cork)

Funding: EPSRC