a note for the current IDE PhD course students

download the preparation kit here: http://tinyurl.com/8tpa544 (note that it is multi-layered, you don’t need to read every detail, only enough to do the exercise).

See also my current themes.

Prototyping Interaction with Sketchy VR in TRI

The TRI system is based upon a decade of experience in Virtual Reality (VR), and a slight frustration that VR always turned out to be more programming than user experience. TRI is aimed to bring a prototyping environment within the software skills (and interests!) of IDE students. Since its original development in winter 1999, TRI has supported research and teaching products in early interactive concept visualisation and contextual concept development and testing. TRI was funded by Academic Computing Services Amsterdam (SARA), the department of Industrial Design (ID), and the interdisciplinary AMBITION project.


Storyboards are a visual-verbal form of communication employed in the design process. They are especially helpful in the design process in communicating aspects of context and time to a multidisciplinary audience. Since their invention in the 30s in the film industry by Walt Disney, storyboards have served that industry in bringing together multidisciplinary design teams. Some storyboardings techniques have since seen application in interaction design, especially in visualizing typical sequences in the design of software products. Of late, they have become essential means in communicating user-product interactions in product design as a whole, especially where experiential factors are concerned (“how does my mobile phone matter to me when I’m carrying it, standby, but NOT receiving any calls”). Currently, the storyboarding group has devised a special tutorial and course which has been used in the Industrial Design Engineering curricula and in international conferences, such as 2AD.

Inspiration interfaces

Many computer-based (design) tools have been designed with information in mind. Designers often find them too verbal, and experience the functional menus-and-button interfaces stifling to the inspiration.
MDS-Interactive is one interface technique that provides visual access to a verbally structured database. The technique was originally devised to support designer’s ideation process during the browsing or search of a typologically structured product database. It soon dawned on us that the technique has wider applications in areas where people have to make choices based on intuition, taste, or complex judgements, as in choosing a wine or a holiday destination. TU Delft now holds patents for the method, and we are actively searching for interested industrial partners, especially in the field of e-commerce.

Tiny Tools

Tools with minimal interfaces that provide a focused functionality for designers and like-minded mortals. These applications live on the narrow boundary between tentative theory, exploration, and downright play, where aesthetics is (at last) not a side-liner but a main field player. Some of the prototypes are based on sketching actions. All are aimed to be very very simple to use. But not necessarily for very simple users… However, experts, like ‘consumers’ (whatever they may be) prefer not to be distracted by interfaces but to be allowed to focus on the content of their work. And that doesn’t happen all too often. In tiny tools we try…Demos and short descriptions can be downloaded from the tiny tools site.