SGER - End-user Sketching of Games and Simulations

James Landay Investigator)

University of Washington
1100 NE 45th St, Suite 300
SEATTLE, WA 98105 206/543-4043


Existing end-user programming tools focus too much attention on programming. Likewise, game building applications focus on precision rather than exploring the design space. This research will investigate the possibility that the need for programming can be reduced or eliminated with the introduction of sketched behaviors. This project develops and evaluates a new approach to end-user production of simple games and simulations that builds on K-Sketch, an informal animation sketching system. This approach will foster creativity by allowing users to rapidly sketch out objects and their behaviors using the techniques in KSketch and then transform these sketches into rough games or simulations with no programming. An in-depth analysis of a range of games and simulations conducted as part of this work will determine what behaviors such a tool should support. This project will also produce initial interaction designs for such a system. These early designs will be evaluated with Wizard of Oz testing techniques to explore the impact of the design decisions on creativity. The broader impact of this work is a new creative outlet to children, teachers, and others who wish to create games and simulations. It may also help discover tool features that can impact creativity in other domains.