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Best Paper award for CCC researcher Anders Markussen – University of Copenhagen

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28 May 2014

Best Paper award for CCC researcher Anders Markussen

Vulture: A Mid-Air Word-Gesture Keyboard by PhD student Anders Markussen, and co-authors Mikkel R. Jakobsen and Kasper Hornbæk, received a CHI2014 Best Paper Award, making it part of the top 1% of more than 2000 submissions to the premier conference in human computer interaction.

Anders Markussen

Anders Markussen

Anders Markussen has developed a method that makes it possible to write on a screen without touching the screen or anything else – merely by gestures in mid-air. The inspiration comes from, among other things, Xbox Kinect, which interprets specific gestures without the use of a game controller, making hands-free control possible. 

Large interactive displays have become an integrated part of our everyday lives. Whether at home, at work or in a public place, large displays are starting to appear everywhere. While the displays allow for interactive content, the interaction techniques are still lacking behind. Especially typing text on these interactive displays is challenging. The award winning paper explores how text entry is possible by drawing the words as gestures in the air in front of the user.

The work can prove valuable in many different contexts. Amongst others, doctors could be able to interact with computers during surgery without using a physical keyboard or a touchscreen keyboard, thus minimizing the risk of a bacterial infection that could jeopardize the health and safety of patients.

Anders Markussen and Søren Knudsen are demonstrating Vulture

Anders Markussen and Søren Knudsen are demonstrating Vulture

There are plenty of other possible applications of Vulture, says Anders Markussen, but right now, the first challenge is to improve the text-entry rate. While the text-entry rate is not bad, he continues, it still cannot compete with a classic keyboard or a touchscreen.    

The Vulture project is an offshoot of the WallViz project that is looking into the use of wall-sized, interactive displays. 

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