Blended Interaction 2013

Description of the workshop

Blended Interaction is interaction in physical environments including meeting rooms, studios, or libraries that are augmented with post-WIMP UI technologies to blend the power of digital computing with natural work practices and collaboration. Blended Interaction combines the virtues of physical and digital artifacts, so that desired properties of each are preserved while integrating computing power in a considered manner. Examples of Blended Interaction range from digital pen & paper and pen & multi-touch interaction to tangible displays in rooms of mixed or augmented reality.

In a world of Blended Interaction, computing is woven into the fabric of our natural physical and social environment without being too obtrusive or disruptive. Using it does not create the cognitive load (or the “mental gymnastics” that Mark Weiser criticized) of using today’s desktop computers, so that we are freed to use computers without thinking and to focus beyond them on new goals (Mark Weiser, 1991). As a consequence, the quality of Blended Interaction is judged by its compatibility with our natural cognitive processes when we interact and collaborate in the real non-digital world.

We believe that HCI should move beyond creating new technologies, specific applications, and single interaction techniques without contributing to a theory of unobtrusive and non-disruptive post-WIMP interaction. Therefore the ACM CHI 2013 Workshop on “Blended Interaction: Envisioning Future Collaborative Interactive Spaces” is the first international workshop that will bring together leading experts in cognitive theories and post-WIMP designs and technologies to create a unified vision and theory of Blended Interaction in a multidisciplinary approach. The workshop will be based on three pillars:

  • Technology - Novel post-WIMP technologies ultimately define how we will interact in interactive spaces. This workshop invites creators of novel technologies to contribute their expertise on novel input and output devices, sensor technologies, computer vision, gesture recognition, and software frameworks to create a common understanding of what will drive future Blended Interaction.
  • Vision - In its past, HCI has benefited from ambitious visions of future interaction such as Apple’s Knowledge Navigator or Mark Weiser’s “A day in the life of Sal”. Our workshop aims at creating a unified vision of Blended Interaction based on the individual contributions and experiences of the workshop attendees. This vision will be developed in highly interactive project groups and prototyped using simple non-digital materials.
  • Theory – We need better theories and models of human cognition to be able to understand and classify new post-WIMP interaction designs and to predict their appropriateness. For this reason, we will use theories, frameworks, and concepts from Reality-based Interaction, Embodied Cognition and Cognitive Linguistics such as Power vs. Reality Tradeoffs, Conceptual Blending, and Image Schemata during the workshop.



09:00 – 09:15 Opening and introduction
09:15 – 09:45 Keynote Robert Jacob (Tufts University) on “Theory”
09:45 – 10:15 6 Pecha Kucha Style Presentations (5min each)
Talk 1: PIBA-DIBA or How to Blend the Digital with the Physical
Jörn Hurtienne (1) and Johann Habakuk Israel (2)
(1) University of Würzburg
(2) Fraunhofer IPK, Virtual Product Creation
Talk 2: Exploring Natural Interaction: Using Real-World Materials to Inspire Interaction Design
Marius Brade, Mandy Keck, Thomas Gründer, Dietrich Kammer and Rainer Groh
Chair of Media Design, Technische Universität Dresden
Talk 3: InGrid: Rethinking the Embodied Space
Mounia Ziat (1), Jonathan Fancher(1), Kurt Kilpela (1), Josh Fridstrom (1) and James J. Clark (2)
(1) Northern Michigan University
(2) McGill University
Talk 4: Blended Interaction Spaces for Collaborative Design
Peter Dalsgaard, Kim Halskov and Clemens Klokmose
Centre for Participatory IT, Dept. of Aesthetics and Communication, Aarhus University
Talk 5: Blended Interaction for Information Visualization
Jagoda Walny and Sheelagh Carpendale
University of Calgary
Talk 6: Beyond WIMP: Designing NUIs to Support Productivity Document Tasks
Fabrice Matulic
ETH Zürich
10:15 – 10:45 Keynote Michel Beaudouin-Lafon (Université Paris-Sud 11) on “Vision”
10:45 – 11:15 Coffee Break
11:15 – 11:45 6 Pecha Kucha Style Presentations (5min each)
Talk 7: Implementing an ICE: A methodology for the design, development and installation of Interactive Collaborative Environments in real world industrial settings
Oli Mival and David Benyon
Centre for Interaction Design, Edinburgh Napier University
Talk 8: Blended Interaction as an Approach for Holistic Control Room Design
Simon Butscher, Jens Müller, Tobias Schwarz and Harald Reiterer
Human-Computer Interaction Group, University of Konstanz
Talk 9: A Blended Space for Tourism: Genesee Village Country & Museum
David Benyon (1), Brian O’Keefe (2) and Oli Mival (1)
(1) Centre for interaction Design, Edinburgh Napier University
(2) Mobile Experiences for Tourism, Rochester Institute of Technology
Talk 10: HeritageVista: Informative, Personalised and Engaging Visitor Experiences
Elliot Matthew (1), John Tredinnick (1), Eamonn O’Neill (2), Paul Richens (3) and Paul Shepherd (3)
(1) Centre for Digital Entertainment, University of Bath
(2) Department of Computer Science, University of Bath
(3) Department of Architecture & Civil Engineering, University of Bath
Talk 11: Self-Organizing User Interfaces: Envisioning the Future of Ubicomp UIs
Hans-Christian Jetter and Harald Reiterer
Human-Computer Interaction Group, University of Konstanz
Talk 12: Using Theatre Tech to Address Attention Issues in Blended Environments for Collaboration
Edward Tse, Michael Trenholm-Boyle and Gerald Morrison
SMART Technologies
11:45 – 12:15 Keynote Andy Wilson (Microsoft Research) on “Technology”
12:15 – 12:35 4 Pecha Kucha Style Presentations (5 min each)
Talk 13: PerspectiveTable: Blending Physical and Virtual Collaborative Workspaces
Fabian Hennecke (1), Simon Völker (2), Maximilian Schenk (1), Hauke Schaper (2), Jan Borchers (2), Andreas Butz (1)
(1) HCI Group, University of Munich
(2) RWTH Aachen University
Talk 14: Translucent Tangibles on Tabletops: Exploring the Design Space
Mathias Frisch, Ulrike Kister, Wolfgang Büschel, Ricardo Langner and Raimund Dachselt
Interactive Media Lab, Technische Universität Dresden
Talk 15: A Usable API for Multi-Surface Systems
Chris Burns, Teddy Seyed, Theodore D. Hellmann, Mario Costa Sousa and Frank Maurer
Dept. of Computer Science, University of Calgary
Talk 16: The Interactive Dining Table
Florian Echtler and Raphael Wimmer
Chair for Media Informatics, University of Regensburg
12:35 – 14:00 Lunch Break
14:00 – 14:15 3 Pecha Kucha Style Presentations (5 min each)
Talk 17: Enhancing Data-Driven Collaboration with Large-Scale Interactive Tabletops
Orit Shaer, Consuelo Valdes, Casey Grote, Wendy Xu and Taili Feng
Wellesley College
Talk 18: Ceiling Interaction: Properties, Usage Scenarios, and a Prototype
Raphael Wimmer, Alexander Bazo, Markus Heckner and Christian Wolff
University of Regensburg
Talk 19: InReach: Manipulating 3D Objects Remotely Using Your Body
Anette von Kapri, Kevin Wong, Seth Hunter, Nick Gillian and Pattie Maes
MIT Media Lab
14:15 – 15:30 Envisioning & design sessions with physical prototyping (in groups)
including coffee break (15:00 – 15:30)
15:30 – 16:00 Presentation and discussion of results of envisioning & design sessions
16:00 – 16:15 Generation of items for topic map “Blended Interaction”
16:15 – 16:45 Collaborative clustering & discussion of topic map “Blended Interaction”
16:45 – 17:00 Workshop Wrap-up & Closing
Raimund Dachselt
Summary slides
Summary Notes: Blended Interaction – Interaction Design by Aaron Quigley

Blended Interaction 2013 in pictures

All pictures by Raimund Dachselt (34) and Michel Beaudouin-Lafon (1).

Invited Talks at the Workshop

The workshop will feature three invited talks by experts on the three different pillars of Blended Interaction:

Invited Talk on Theory Invited Talk on Vision Invited Talk on Technology

Robert Jacob
Tufts University

Michel Beaudouin-Lafon
Université de Paris-Sud

Andy Wilson
Microsoft Research

At the workshop

The workshop is intended as a forum for 15-20 attendees with multidisciplinary backgrounds and not as a mini-conference. We want to achieve a productive and critical reflection on Blended Interaction by letting experts from different fields work on a shared vision and theory.

  1. After Pecha Kucha presentations of participants’ submissions, invited impulse talks will establish a common ground for the workshop (e.g., goals, concepts, terminology).
  2. Groups of 3- 4 persons will envision and rapidly prototype future concepts of Blended Interaction for the particular context of a physical environment (e.g. showroom). Paper prototyping material will be provided to illustrate the envisioned ideas and projects. Even acting out can be used to present the mini projects in the open group session afterwards.
  3. Experts on different cognitive theories (e.g., blending theory, image schemata) will comment on the concepts from their perspective and by this trigger a discussion about generalizable cognitive models for Blended Interaction. This will include a critical reflection on the presented visions.

Location and Venue

The workshop will be held in conjunction with the ACM SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI 2013). CHI is the premier international conference on human-computer interaction and will be held in Paris, France at the Palais de Congrès de Paris.

The workshop chairs of CHI have informed us that the workshops will not take place in the CHI conference centre (Palais de Congrès de Paris). Our workshop will be hosted at the Université Paris-Dauphine in Room B212.

This is what we were told by the CHI workshop chairs:

“To go from the Palais to the Dauphine, the best way is to get on the RER C metro line (1 stop), or to walk (1km or 5/8 of a mile). Depending on where attendees are staying, the Metro Line 2 may work better for them (stop at Porte Dauphine). Here is a map with Palais de Congrès and Université Paris-Dauphine: We also added a new page to the CHI web page here:“.

Workshop submissions

We invite submissions addressing the technologyvision, and theory of Blended Interaction and will carefully select participants to ensure an equal distribution of expertise from these three fields. Typical topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Display and sensor technologies that enable blending the digital and the physical
  • Interaction techniques and gestures that mimic and extend the real world
  • (Multi-)touch and/or pen input on everyday objects and surfaces
  • Tangible user interfaces, tangible information representations and tangible displays
  • Technology and designs for mixed and augmented reality
  • Collaboration concepts in interactive spaces, models and theories of collaboration
  • Theories and models of embodied cognition and “natural” interaction
  • Cognitive linguistics, conceptual blending, image schemata, metaphors
  • Models of reality-based and embodied interaction
  • Influence of proprioception and kinesthesia on cognition
  • Proxemics in human-computer interaction
  • Architecture, ergonomics and interior design of digitally-augmented physical environments
  • Visions of future human-computer interaction

All papers should be submitted using the EasyChair submission page for our workshop ( by January 18, 2013 (deadline extended!). Participants will be selected based on their submission in either of two categories:

  1. short position papers (up to 4 pages in CHI extended abstracts format), in which they have to demonstrate informed positions about the topic
  2. workshop papers (up to 6 pages in CHI extended abstracts format) describing their on-going research.

All contributions will be peer-reviewed by at least two reviewers from an international program committee. Like in past workshops of the organizers (e.g.,, we plan on publishing extended versions of selected workshop papers in a special issue on Blended Interaction of a scientific journal.

Deadline for submissions: Jan 18th, 2013 (deadline extended!).

Notifications of acceptance: Feb 8th, 2013.

One author of each paper is required to register to the workshop and one day of CHI’13. The one-day workshop will take place in conjunction with CHI’13 in Paris on Sunday, April 28, 2013. Questions should be directed to



Hans-Christian Jetter is researcher in the HCI Group of the University of Konstanz, Germany. His research interest include interaction design, software architectures, and cognitive foundations for post-WIMP interactive spaces.

Raimund Dachselt is professor of computer science at the Technische Universität Dresden, Germany, where he heads the Interactive Media Lab. His main research interests are novel visualization and seamless interaction techniques for environments with multiple displays and input modalities.

Harald Reiterer is professor of Human-Computer Interaction at the University of Konstanz. He established the HCI group in 1997. His research interests include visual information seeking systems, ubiquitous computing, distributed user interfaces, multimodal interaction, and the development of a holistic post-WIMP interaction paradigm called Blended Interaction.

Aaron Quigley is professor in the chair of Human Computer Interaction in the School of Computer Science at the University of St Andrews in Scotland and deputy director for SICSA. His research interests include surface and multi-display computing, human-computer interaction, pervasive and ubiquitous computing, and information visualisation.

David Benyon is professor of Human-Computer Systems at Edinburgh Napier University and Director of the Centre for Interaction Design. His research covers blending theory, mixed reality space, and developments in the sense of presence in pervasive computing environments.

Michael Haller is professor and head of the Media Interaction Lab at the University of Applied Sciences Upper Austria and the Austrian Research Center NiCE. He is responsible for computer graphics, human-computer interaction, and augmented reality. His core ares of expertise are visualization and interaction.

Organizational support and on-site assistant: Daniel Klinkhammer

Program Committee

Maryam Aj, National University of Singapore
Serkan Ayan, Edinburgh Napier University
David Benyon, Edinburgh Napier University
Marius Brade, Technische Universität Dresden
Simon Butscher, University of Konstanz
Raimund Dachselt, Technische Universität Dresden
Alan Dix, University of Birmingham
Michael Haller, University of Applied Sciences Upper Austria
Uta Hinrichs, University of St Andrews
Petra Isenberg, INRIA, Université Paris-Sud
Hans-Christian Jetter, University of Konstanz
Brian O’Keefe, Rochester Institute of Technology
Fabrice Matulic, ETH Zurich
Oli Mival, Edinburgh Napier University
Miguel Nacenta, University of St Andrews
Aaron Quigley, University of St Andrews
Roman Rädle, University of Konstanz
Harald Reiterer, University of Konstanz
Shengdong Zhao, National University of Singapore