SGER: Leveraging Grassroots Creativity for Interaction Design: Infrastructure Support for Design Thinking

Scott Klemmer Investigator)

Stanford University
651 Serra Street, Room 220
STANFORD, CA 94305 650/723-2300


The project creates and evaluates two techniques for interaction design by example modification. The first of these techniques will be a direct manipulation technique for modifying existing web applications, the digital equivalent of adding additional padding to a backpack shoulder strap. This direct manipulation approach will be based on the d.mix technology for web mash-ups. The second proposed technique will introduce of runtime tuning into the user interface. Tuning in an interface is the ability for designers to mark certain attributes in a user interface as tunable, these may be either continuously variable attributes such as color, or discretely distinct variations of a sub-piece of the design. In a tunable user interface, designers will be provided with an additional tuning view on a separate display at runtime that enables them to interactively vary the denoted attributes; the tunable prototype will employ a USB mixing board for controlling the attributes, so as to provide a ready-to-hand physical interface. The goal of this research is to understand whether introducing techniques for rapidly modifying existing interfaces actually impacts the quality of creative design. Broader Impacts: The proposed research will help pave the way for computer science research on creativity by offering an example of how CS research can draw on science?s understanding of human cognition and on ethnographic fieldwork as resources for tool design. The project will release software on the web as open source. This will help practitioners who would like to use these tools, as well as research and industrial efforts to extend the research and development manifest in our tools.