The Future of Human Expression: Embodied Interaction with Free-form Curation

The Interface Ecology Lab conducts research to transform human expression. Our goal is use new technologies to stimulate spontaneity and creativity. Centuries ago, the technology of movable type vaulted human consciousness and expression from oral performance—improvisational— to writing, fixed by letters and words. We work to discover new media and interaction modalities beyond print’s linearity, hypertext’s disconnected views, and the limits of keyboard and mouse. We engage the human body with the digital. We use the cloud and web to maximize impact. We incorporate live streaming media.

Through iterative design research, we are inventing free-form web curation, a new medium that enables multimedia elements to be spontaneously gathered from the web, written about, sketched amidst, manipulated, and visually assembled in a continuous space. The visual assemblage forms a digital abstract map, liberated from the confines of particular websites by a zoomable user interface. The goal of this holistic medium is to support creative cognition of relationships and the emergence of new ideas. Our free-form web curation environment, IdeaMâché, has been used by 4560 students in 12 course offerings spanning 5 departments, resulting in 271,544 pageviews. We present qualitative, quantitative, and visual data showing how free-form curation supports design ideation. A new alpha release of IdeaMâché supports real time collaboration and live streaming media.

According to diverse scholars and artists, sensation and embodied experience serve as keys to human thinking. Our research investigates bimanual interaction in landscape architecture and gaming, with a specific focus on modalities that combine pen and touch sensing. Ecological studies investigate how a holistic environment incorporating these new modalities supports design. Controlled experiments investigate the efficacy of particular interaction techniques. LayerFish is a new technique that helps designers manipulate visual material comprised of hundreds of overlapping layers.

Studio Show
October 20, 2016
16:00 – 17:00
(Please note this is a Thursday, on Wednesday 19 there is no LabTalk)

Andruid Kerne is a researcher working at the intersection of science and art to support human creativity and innovation through computing and education. He is Professor of Computer Science and Engineering at Texas A&M University, and director of the Interface Ecology Lab

[]. Andruid holds a B.A. in applied mathematics / electronic media from Harvard, an M.A. in music composition from Wesleyan, and a Ph.D. in computer science from NYU. He is an Art Chair of ACM CHI 2017.