CONTEXT AND GOALS
Computing today involves digital artefacts that are ubiquitously present in most human activities and smoothly integrated in the fabric of our everyday life, making our living space “smart”. Interactive digital technology and multimedia content are pervasively available in large or small displays, are embedded in objects, appliances, vehicles, or furniture, and are “part of our body” through wearable miniaturized devices like smart watches. All these components are Internet-connected, and users communicate with them, or with other humans through them, using new interaction paradigms such as gestures, body movements, speech, or tangible manipulation of physical smart objects and robots.
This course provides the methodological and technological know-how to master the complexity of the above scenarios and to develop innovative solutions in this arena.
It stimulates a thinking “out of the box” attitude and attention to user needs and requirements, which both are crucial to exploit the full potential of novel ICT technologies and to address its application challenges.
The teaching/learning approach is project-based (you learn by doing a project) and problem-based (your project work starts from users’ needs and requirements).
The focus of students’ projects this year is on 3 main themes:
i) smart spaces integrating multiple interaction paradigms,
ii) playful Internet of Things applications;
iii) wearable services (smart watches).
in the following application domains:
i) play, learning, and therapy for children (with special needs);
ii) fashion, shopping and retail.
Project-related activities will start since the beginning of the course and intense project tutoring will be offerent in the classroom, with the suprevision of the teacher and teaching assistants.
Please notice that we will not be able to offer tutoring after the end of the semester hence students are invited to perform their project work during the course to benefit of tutoring support.
Most students’ projects are related to ongoing activities in national and international projects (see examples in http://i3lab.elet.polimi.it/). Testimonial from educational or therapeutic institutions, companies, or start-ups are invited during the course and are available to collaborate with students to facilitate a better understanding of users’ needs and requirements.
Project work is interplayed with lectures, demos, discussion of research or industrial projects, and presentations by testimonials from national or international large companies and start-ups.
Projects can be extended to master thesis.
Course lectures will cover 3 main subject areas:
- “Beyond the desktop” interaction paradigms: tangible interaction (physical manipulation of “smart” interconnected physical objects that are digitally enhanced with sensors and actuators, e.g. using Arduino technology); full body interaction (Microsoft Kinect, Leap, Intel Perceptual Computing); wearable interaction (smart watches, Myo). Each paradigm is discussed from different perspectives: rationale/vision/design principles; up-to-date implementation technology and development tools
- Development process of interactive application: Main tasks involved in the development of interactive applications, and methods to perform them: requirements elicitation (Goal oriented approaches); design (scenario based approaches); prototyping (sketching approaches); evaluation (heuristics and empirical methods)
- Experimental Research in Human Computer Interaction. User-based experimental research is crucial to understand human needs and requirements for a service-to-be, to generate new design ideas, and to evaluate an interactive artefact (either a prototype or a deployed system) in terms of quality for its intended target. Basic concepts and methods of experimental research are discussed, including: research questions; dependent/independent variables; between v.s. within-group design; qualitative vs. quantitative data; data gathering techniques (observation, surveys; interviews; focus groups; automated data collection); data analysis; reliability and validity
Course slides and additional teaching material will be available on Beep. The books in the Bibliography section are suggested reading to dig more deeply in the course subjects.