Multitouch Puppetry: Creating coordinated 3D motion for an articulated arm

Controlling a high-dimensional structure like a 3D humanoid skeleton is a challenging task. Intuitive interfaces that allow non-experts to perform character animation with standard input devices would open up many possibilities. Therefore, we propose a novel multitouch interface for simultaneously controlling the many degrees of freedom of a human arm. We combine standard multitouch techniques and a morph map into a bimanual interface, and evaluate this interface in a three-layered user study with repeated interactions. The multitouch interface was found to be as easy to learn as the mouse interface while outperforming it in terms of coordination. For the analysis, we propose a novel quantity-based coordination measure. For the systematic exploration of the design space, we suggest using dataflow diagrams. Our results show that even complex multitouch interfaces can be easy to learn and that our interface allows non-experts to produce highly coordinated arm-hand animations with subtle timing.

Extended ITS Conference Video (Quicktime, 21 MB) showing (1) the interface (2) the user study design and (3) samples of the creative task.

Kipp, M., Nguyen, Q. (2010) Multitouch Puppetry: Creating coordinated 3D motion for an articulated arm. In: Proceedings of the ACM International Conference on Interactive Tabletops and Surfaces 2010, ACM Press.

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