Scroll to top

Unleash Wearable Interactions from the Disappearing Touchscreens

November 10, 2017

Xing-Dong Yang, PhD
Assistant Professor of Computer Science
Dartmouth College

About the Presentation: The ubiquitous touchscreen has become the primary mechanism with which users interact with small personal computing devices. While there is a trend showing that personal computing devices may become smaller and smaller, a primary constraint on device miniaturization is the user interface (e.g. touchscreen). Screens need to be large enough to be seen, and keyboards need enough physical space to facilitate typing. Arbitrary hardware miniaturization may lead to devices that are not usable. In this talk, Dr. Yang will present his work in extending the interaction space of wearable devices from the touchscreens to several new dimensions through 1) new sensing techniques, 2) novel device form factors, and 3) new input mechanisms. He will show  examples of new sensing techniques they developed, including a finger-worn device which allows touch input to be carried out on any surface available to the users and a smartphone capable of ‘seeing’ user’s input in the surrounding environment using the front-facing camera augmented by an omni-directional lens. He will also show how tangible interactions can be performed on the small wearable form factor using a dual-display smartwatch. Additionally, Dr. Yang will demonstrate a few new smartwatch interactions enabled by an actuated watch face. Finally, he will talk about one-handed input on smartwatches and give you an example to demonstrate that common touchscreen input on a smartwatch can be carried out using only one hand by whirling the wrist of the hand wearing the smartwatch. Dr. Yang will conclude by presenting his vision of how future wearable devices can be developed to improve people’s daily activities.

About the Presenter: Dr. Yang is an Assistant Professor of Computer Science at Dartmouth College. His research interests span a wide spectrum of topics in human-computer interaction (HCI), with a specific emphasis on developing input technologies, novel interaction techniques, and novel augmentations for mobile and wearable devices. Before he joined Dartmouth, Dr. Yang was a Post-Doc at the iLab of the University of Calgary working with Anthony Tang and Saul Greenberg. He received his Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Alberta, Canada in 2013. His Ph.D. advisor was Pourang Irani and Pierre Boulanger. Dr. Yang’s dissertation work was awarded the 2013 Bill Buxton Best Canadian HCI Dissertation Award, given annually for the best doctoral dissertation completed at a Canadian university in the field of human-computer interaction. During his Ph.D., Dr. Yang interned at Microsoft Research Asia under the supervision of Xiang Cao and at Autodesk Research under the supervision of Tovi Grossman and George Fitzmaurice.