Back-of-Device Interaction Allows Creating Very Small Touch Devices

Speaker: Patrick Baudisch , Microsoft Research and Hasso Plattner Institute

Date: Friday, April 10, 2009

Time: 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM

Refreshments: 3:45 PM

Public: Yes

Location: Patil/Kiva Seminar Room 32-G449

Event Type:

Room Description:

Host: Rob Miller, MIT CSAIL

Contact: Michael Bernstein, (617) 253-0452,

Relevant URL:

Speaker URL: None

Speaker Photo:

Reminders to:,,

Reminder Subject: TALK: Back-of-Device Interaction Allows Creating Very Small Touch Devices

In this talk, I will discuss how to add pointing input capabilities to very small screen devices. On first sight, touchscreens seem to allow for particular compactness, because they integrate input and screen into the same physical space. The opposite is true, however, because the user’s fingers occlude contents and prevent precision.

I argue that the key to touch-enabling very small devices is to use touch on the device backside. In order to study this, we have created a 2.4” prototype device; we simulate screens smaller than that by masking the screen. I present a user study in which participants completed a pointing task successfully across display sizes when using a back-of device interface. The touchscreen-based control condition (enhanced with the shift technique), in contrast, failed for screen diagonals below 1 inch. I present four form factor concepts based on back-of-device interaction and provide design guidelines extracted from a second user study.

Speaker Biography:
Patrick Baudisch is a research scientist in the field of human-computer interaction at the Adaptive Systems and Interaction Research Group at Microsoft Research, as well as an Affiliate Assistant Professor in Computer Science at the University of Washington. His research focus is on interaction with small screen devices, which evolved from a series of research projects on interaction with wall displays he started at Xerox PARC. While at Fraunhofer-IPSI and during his stay as a guest researcher at the GroupLens project at the University on Minnesota, Baudisch worked on user interfaces for information filtering systems. He holds a PhD in Computer Science from Darmstadt University of Technology, Germany.

Research Areas:

Impact Areas:

See other events that are part of the HCI Seminar Series spring 2009.

Created by Linda L. Julien Email at Wednesday, June 19, 2013 at 6:23 AM.