Monthly Archives: August 2009

Uppsala in Sweden is still one of the places I have never been to – and this year I missed another chance: Interact 2009

From our group Florian was there an presented his paper on a parasitic applications for the web [1]. We also published joined work with ETH Zürich on a comparison of product identification techniques on mobile devices [2]. Heiko Drewes has submitted his PhD thesis on Eye-tracking for interaction and one of the early projects he did was now published at Interact. The idea is that the mouse courser is positioned to the position where your eye-gaze… Continue reading

Yesterday after my talk I met briefly Prof. Brian Randell from the School of Computing Science at Newcastle University. Today we had a chat over a coffee and it is really interesting to think more about dependability implications of ubicomp technologies.

Besides many other points I got a set of interesting pointers to books:

We are in Newcastle for a Workshop working on a new idea for tangible UIs that can be easily customized. The basic idea is to senparate functional parts of the system (electronics etc.) from the shell/tangible components of a devices. By this we hope to support innovation in a sustainable way. The skin of the appliance is printed (in 3D).

Nic Villar came up from Cambridge and he showed us some interesting materials… and obviously there is a shop (materials.http://www.mutr.co.uk/) to get those… Look in the section for smart materials – there are probably many ideas hidden for… Continue reading

The Newspaper Recklinghäuser Zeitung runs a series on inventers in the region. We were honored to be part of this. The article “Jede Menge Infos im Café-Tisch” (in German) is online at Medienhaus Bauer.

The article made me think again how we can motivate students to invent new things and applications. It is always a trade-off between giving students a very open project (where some are very creative and others just try to find the minimum requirement but it is not really clear what exactly the learn) and providing a clear assignment (where there is little space… Continue reading

Tsvi Kuflik and Antonio Krüger organize from August 30th – September 3rd a German-Israeli Minerva School for Ubiquitous Display Environments: Intelligent Group Interaction, Foundations and Implementation of Pervasive Multimodal Interfaces. I will teach a session on: “Embedded interaction with display environments” and here is the list of recommended readings for the participants – if you are short on time only read the first one and glance over the other two.

Mahato, H., Kern, D., Holleis, P., and Schmidt, A. 2008. Implicit personalization of public environments using bluetooth. In CHI ’08 Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems (Florence,… Continue reading

If you study computer science in Germany you get a fair bit of math to do – especially in the first year. It is not liked by all students… Nevertheless I have a reading recommendation that has to do with mathematics. I came across the book some month ago in a railway station bookshop – and I immediately liked it 😉

Der Mathematikverführer by Christoph Drösser. Sample Chapter (in German). Solutions to the stories in the book. Link to the page at Amazon.

The concept of the book is funny (at least I think so) as… Continue reading

Florian Michahelles mentioned in his blog a talk [1] and paper [2] by Aaron Beach on mobile social networks that are linked to artefacts (e.g. clothing) in the real world. This is really interesting and I think we should look more into this…

[1] Aaron Beach. University of Colorado. Whozthat: Mobile Social Networks. Whoz touching me? Whoz Music? Whoz Watching? Who Cares?

[2] Beach, A.; Gartrell, M.; Akkala, S.; Elston, J.; Kelley, J.; Nishimoto, K.; Ray, B.; Razgulin, S.; Sundaresan, K.; Surendar, B.; Terada, M.; Han, R., “WhozThat? evolving an ecosystem for context-aware mobile social networks” Network, IEEE… Continue reading

On Saturday we went to Garmisch and walked up to Höllentalklamm (a nice canyon) and had lunch at Höllentalangerhütter. Our GPS tracking data from the canyon was pretty poor (as one would expect as the canyon is in parts only a few meters wide).

Observing other hikers (especially people who did the larger tours) it was very interesting to see how maps are used in social situations – planning, discussion, reflection, and storytelling (this time n>10). It is hard to image how this experience can be replaced by an implementation on a mobile device.

Will we have to wait till we have 1 meter by 1 meter foldable e-ink displays with 200dpi? Or are there other means to implement a good hiking map on a mobile phone screen? There is a… Continue reading