Course Description

Media art relies much on the audio and visual senses to engage audience. Interactive media has its uniqueness to employ the tactile sense to create a total sensation for audience. Early interactive artworks start by using ‘classical’ devices of mouse and keyboard to couple the audience’s actions and the audio and visual transformation of virtual objects on screen. More sophisticated works embed the interacting devices into a spatial environment or custom made artefacts. In both cases, audience has an embodied experience with the artworks through the exchange of information channelled in the sense of touch.

Because digital technologies are incorporated into our daily life, there is a crucial need to strengthen the communication between these systems and their users. These interfaces are the subject of the course. Students will create new hardware interfaces using electronics and sensors that can replace the mouse and keyboard. Basic design skills and knowledge of Adobe Creative suite are expected.

The interaction between the digital and the physical world is a field with increasing meaning for designers and artists. This course will explore the history of interface design – related to time and space – with regards to usability and cultural issues. The development of interfaces has always been driven by technical progress along with the needs of human beings. Students will research experience design, products design, and digital content and create new concepts for interfaces.

Intended Learning Outcomes

  1. Demonstrate an understanding of the cultural context of the tactile sense in interactive art and interaction design;
  2. Apply the skills of computer programming for use in interaction design projects;
  3. Master authoring tools commonly used in the creative industries to produce interactive content;
  4. Formulate design concepts for interfaces and manage the implementation process;
  5. Analyze the basic technical principles of physical interfaces and sensors and develop prototypes for the projects;
  6. Reflect on the effectiveness of the interfaces in relation with aesthetics and usability.

Reference

  • Aicher, Otl. Analogous and Digital. Berlin: Ernst & Sohn Verlag, 1991.
  • Buxton, Bill. Sketching User Experiences: Getting the Design Right and the Right Design. Oxford: Morgan Kaufmann, 2007.
  • Dawes, Brendan. Analog In, Digital Out: Brendan Dawes on Interaction Design. Indianapolis: New Riders, 2006.
  • Banzi, Massimo. Getting Started with Arduino. Cambridge: O’Reilly Media, 2009.
  • Maeda, John, Casey Reas, and Benjamin Fry. Processing: A Programming Handbook for Visual Designers and Artists. Cambridge: MIT Press, 2007.
  • Marks, Laura U. Touch: Sensuous Theory and Multisensory Media. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2002.
  • Moggridge, Bill. Designing Interactions. Cambridge: MIT Press, 2006.
  • O’Sullivan, Dan, and Tom Igoe. Physical Computing. Portland: Premier Press, 2004.
  • Platt, Charles. Make: Electronics. Sebastopol: O’Reilly Media, 2009.
  • Saffer, Dan. Designing for Interaction: Creating Smart Applications and Clever Devices. Berkeley: Peachpit Press, 2006.
  • Tidwell, Jenifer. Designing Interfaces. Sebastopol: O’Reilly, 2005.
  • Wardrip-Fruin, Noah, and Nick Montfort, eds. The New Media Reader. Cambridge: MIT Press, 2003.
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