Demo Hour

XVIII.3 May + June 2011
Page: 8
Digital Citation

Michael Haller, Thomas Seifried, Stacey Scott, Florian Perteneder, Christian Rendl, Daisuke Sakamoto, Masahiko Inami, Pranav Mistry, Pattie Maes, Seth Hunter, David Merrill, Jeevan Kalanithi, Susanne Seitinger, Daniel Taub, Alex Taylor

back to top  CRiSTAL

CRiSTAL simplifies the control of our digital devices in and around the living room. The system provides a novel experience for controlling devices in a home environment by enabling users to directly interact with those devices using multi-touch gestures on a digital tabletop. CRiSTAL consists of an interactive multi-touch surface and a camera mounted in the ceiling to capture the entire living room. The interactive surface is integrated into the coffee table and extends its functionality. The display itself is only activated on demand and still can be used as a normal coffee table. When activated, the interactive surface shows the live camera feed. To control the devices in the living room. users touch the corresponding video-image. Depending on the controlled device, different types of input are possible. A sliding gesture over a floor lamp, for example, modifies the brightness of the light source. On the other hand, a similar gesture across the floor in front of a robotic vacuum cleaner defines a path for it to follow.

Project website:

Publication: Seifried, T., Haller, M. Scott, S. D., Perteneder, F. Rendl, C., Sakamoto, D. and Inami, M.

CRISTAL: Design and implementation of a remote-control system based on a multi-touch display. Proc. of the ACM International Conference on Interactive Tabletops and Surfaces. (Calgary, Canada, Nov.23-25). ACM, New York, 2009, 37-44.


* Authors

Michael Haller | MIT Media Lab |
Thomas Seifried, Stacey D. Scott, Florian Perteneder, Christian Rendl, Daisuke Sakamoto, and Masahiko Inami

back to top  Mouseless: An Invisible Computer Mouse

Mouseless is a novel input device that provides the familiarity of interaction from a computer mouse without requiring a real hardware mouse. It consists of an infrared laser beam and an infrared camera, both of which are embedded in a computer. Vision-based computer software interprets user's gestures as mouse movement and click actions. Mouseless also recognizes more complex operations such as drag and drop. It also proposes a number of novel above-the-surface gestural interactions, which a conventional computer mouse cannot support.

Project website:

Publication: Mistry, P. and Maes, P. Mouseless: A computer mouse as small as invisible. To appear at CHI2011. Interactivity. Vancouver, Canada. May 2011


* Authors

Mistry, P. and Maes, P. Mouseless. Adjunct Proc. of the 23rd Annual ACM Symposium on User Interface Software and Technology (New York, NY, Oct. 3-6). ACM, New York, 2010

Pranav Mistry | MIT Media Lab |

Pattie Maes | MIT Media Lab |

back to top  TeleStory (Siftables Platform)

Make a Riddle and TeleStory are educational applications developed on the Siftables platform for children aged 4-7 years. Siftables are tangible+graphical user interface manipulatives with motion and neighbor sensing, graphical display, and wireless communication. Siftables uniquely enables responsive feedback about the movement and arrangement of a distributed set of objects. A detailed explanation of both applications can be found at The Siftables platform has evolved into a commercial product designed for play and learning, Sifteo cubes are available at

Project website:

Publication: Hunter, S., Kalanithi, J. and Merrill, D. Make a Riddle and TeleStory: Designing children's applications for the Siftables platform. Proc. of the 9th International Conference on Interaction Design and Children (Barcelona, Spain, June 9-11). ACM, New York, 2010, 206–209.


* Authors

Seth Hunter | MIT Media Lab |

David Merrill | Sifteo |

Jeevan Kalanithi | Sifteo |

back to top  Light Bodies

Light Bodies are portable, hand-held lighting devices, measuring 4.75" by 3.25", which visualize environmental sounds and vibrations. A custom five-channel LED panel (red, green, blue, amber, white) responds to high and low audio frequencies with colors ranging from red to blue while low vibrations interrupt the transition with a green burst. Light Bodies were tested in three different settings including a choreographed dance performance, an outdoor public installation, and an audio-visual event. In each context, people explored different ways of interpreting their surroundings through light and arranging Light Bodies to shape ambient lightscapes.

Project website:

Publication: Seitinger, S., Taub, D. M., and Taylor, A. S. Light bodies: Exploring interactions with responsive lights

Proc. of the 4th International Conference on Tangible, Embedded, and Embodied Interaction. (Cambridge, MA, Jan. 25-27). ACM, New York, 2010.


* Authors

Susanne Seitinger | MIT Media Laboratory |

Daniel M. Taub | MIT Media Laboratory |

Alex S. Taylor | Microsoft Research, Cambridge |

back to top  Footnotes


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