Interaction Design for Future Smart Environments
Norbert A. Streitz (Fraunhofer IPSI, Darmstadt, Germany)
Abstract. The design of smart environments is based on the idea to integrate information technology, especially sensor technology as, e.g., RFID in everyday objects and combine the resulting smart artefacts into ensembles populating architectural spaces as, e.g., so called Cooperative Buildings. The integration is not limited to sensors but to a range of devices. The computer "disappears" as a device but its functionality is ubiquitously available and provides new forms of interacting with information. Our approach is to develop environments that exploit the affordances of real everyday objects and at the same time use the potential of computer-based support. Combining the best of both worlds requires an integration of real and virtual worlds resulting in hybrid worlds. In my talk, I will first present prototypes illustrating our Roomware concept focussing especially on two examples (Passage, ConnecTable) exploiting sensor technology. This is followed by giving an overview of the EU-funded proactive initiative "The Disappearing Computer" (DC), a cluster of 17 related projects designing new people-friendly environments in which the "computer-as-we-know-it" has no role. Finally, I present results from the DC-project "Ambient Agoras: Dynamic Information Clouds in a Hybrid World". It aims at transforming places into social marketplaces ('agoras') of ideas and information. This is achieved by developing combinations of ambient displays and mobile devices. I will show examples of smart artefacts (Hello.Wall, ViewPort, Personal Aura) that address especially the possibilities of being sensed in smart environments and the related issue of privacy. One application scenario is the support of informal communication between remote teams at different locations using ambient displays.