Liquid Mediated Vision-Based Touch Surface

(2013 - 2015) Tim Campbell, Cesar Torres, Eric Paulos

(2013) Dan Armendariz, Clint Anderson, Ki Fung Chow

Fluid User Interfaces (Fl.UIs) are liquid-based touch surfaces that use computer-vision to detect and interpret a range of tactile user inputs. While Fl.UIs have less input resolution than digital touch screens, they provide an excellent low-cost solution for rapidly prototyping non-rectilinear screen designs as well as exploring novel surface interaction techniques. Fabricated on a laser cutter using low-cost materials, Fl.UIs use unique shape outlines to displace an internal colored liquid to regions-of-interest for a camera. This paper presents a set of software tools that help users rapidly design, fabricate and author interactions with Fl.UIs. The robust construction and an unpowered surface makes Fl.UIs well-suited for outdoor and public installations. The Fl.UIs prototyping tool encourages these uncommon "screens" emerging in complex environments (i.e. urban spaces, benches, tables, fountains, sidewalks).

Fl.UIs will be @

Presentation @ Tangible and Embodied Interaction (TEI) 2015, Stanford, CA Jan 15-19, 2015
Demoing @ Solid 2014 Software/Hardware Everywhere May 21-23, 2014
Computer Vision Showcase (UCB), Berkeley, CA Dec 14, 2013
Theory and Practice of Tangible Interfaces Showcase (UCB), Berkeley, CA Dec 12, 2013

Fl.UIs in the News

"Forget Robots. We’ll Soon Be Fusing Technology With Living Matter" Marcus Wohlsen, Wired May 27, 2014