Apr 30, 2009

Dundee HCIED 2009 Workshop

We taught a workshop at HCIED 2009 in Dundee this past week. There were five participants and all five, although new to Arduino, were experienced with computers so in no time at all they had some pretty fantastic set ups going including a joystick controlling two servos, and a stick which self corrected it's position based on an accelerometer.

We also had one participant who was blind and had both a helper dog and helper human. He is an experienced software engineer so programming was no problem and created a potentiometer controlling the movement of two servos which was interesting for him to tangibly interact with.

We had a great time at this workshop and learned a lot! We learned about Phigets, and played with those and Arduino, and found out that the Arduino software is not compatible with text readers (our blind participant couldn't "See" the program since it was an image not text. We'll have to mention that to the Arduino crew.

We also met a lot of great people at the workshop, all professors in HCI and Interaction design. Some interesting sites to visit: http://www.cs4fn.org/ - A computer Science magazine geared towards kids who is led by a wonderful presenter, Dr. Paul Curzon who wow-ed us with his presentation on how to understand interaction. We also met a man from Australia, Jon Pearce who is working on interactive systems for learning and teaching, check out: http://smartgardenwatering.org.au/

Many honorable mentions including: www.realtimeworlds.com, a "no corporate bs!" game company and some really interesting talks that we enjoyed.

We had a great time, and thank HCIED and the participants for teaching us so much, and taking the time to learn about physical computing!

Photos of workshop can be seen on Flickr, here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/29889578@N05/3487544437/