Appropriate-Modality Bases for Ambient Information Display

Project Leader Project Co-leader
Karon MacLean
University of British Columbia
Jeremy Cooperstock
McGill University 

Graphical displays can overwhelm users’ visual channels and they ignore other sensory channels used every day to make sense of the world. Haptic (touch) and auditory senses are especially well suited to process background,
ambient information. Today’s digital media environments do not handle these nuanced, ambient aspects of human communication.

Interfaces should employ additional display modalities such as haptics and audio for guidance, haptics for low-attention background information, audio for non-verbal social cues, and haptics and audio to serve as agents of persuasion. Human response to non-graphical displays coupled with practical application to novel digital media products will be studied to expand users’ capabilities to interact with complex systems.

AMBAID will provide multi-sensory input and output capability for next-generation digital media applications.