Literature Survey on Interaction Techniques for Large Displays

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Department of Computer Science, Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University

When designing for large screen displays, designers are forced to deal with cursor tracking issues, interacting over distances, and space management issues. Because of the large visual angle of the user that the screen can cover, it may be hard for users to begin and complete search tasks for basic items such as cursors or icons. In addition, maneuvering over long distances and acquiring small targets understandably takes more time than the same interactions on normally sized screen systems. To deal with these issues, large display researchers have developed more and more unconventional devices, methods and widgets for interaction, and systems for space and task management. For tracking cursors there are techniques that deal with the size and shape of the cursor, as well as the “density” of the cursor. There are other techniques that help direct the attention of the user to the cursor. For target acquisition on large screens, many researchers saw fit to try to augment existing 2D GUI metaphors. They try to optimize Fitts’ law to accomplish this. Some techniques sought to enlarge targets while others sought to enlarge the cursor itself. Even other techniques developed ways of closing the distances on large screen displays. However, many researchers feel that existing 2D metaphors do not and will not work for large screens. They feel that the community should move to more unconventional devices and metaphors. These unconventional means include use of eye-tracking, laser-pointing, hand-tracking, two-handed touchscreen techniques, and other high-DOF devices. In the end, many of these developed techniques do provide effective means for interaction on large displays. However, we need to quantify the benefits of these methods and understand them better. The more we understand the advantages and disadvantages of these techniques, the easier it will be to employ them in working large screen systems. We also need to put into place a kind of interaction standard for these large screen systems. This could mean simply supporting desktop events such as pointing and clicking. It may also mean that we need to identify the needs of each domain that large screens are used for and tailor the interaction techniques for the domain.

Human-computer interaction