Sign in to follow this  

Multitouch gesture input

This topic is 2635 days old which is more than the 365 day threshold we allow for new replies. Please post a new topic.

If you intended to correct an error in the post then please contact us.

Recommended Posts

Hey folks

I'm currently working on a project to bring true multitouch gesture support to the desktop. Well, mostly to the Linux desktop, netbooks, tablets, handhelds, and whatever but also to the other platforms (like the various Apple and Microsoft OSes) in a portable way.

One of our targets (one after my own heart) is integrating multitouch gestures into game UIs. To that end, I'm trying to gather grassroots input on requirements for using gestures in game interfaces. Not just the obvious.

I'm also looking for suggestion of how best to integrate a gesture API into the various toolkits. We're primarily interested in free software toolkits for this, since it's up to the vendors of the commercial ones to provide such support.

So here's your chance to contribute to some new technology that's just starting to get off the ground. How do you think gesture could be used to great effect in the games you like?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by Bregma
I'm currently working on a project to bring true multitouch gesture support to the desktop. ... How do you think gesture could be used to great effect in the games you like?
Gestures must match the concept.

The PC games I like all have interfaces that I enjoy. A gesture-based interface would harm them, not help them.

Gesture-based interfaces can hinder usability rather than help it. You need to make sure that people who are less coordinated (either because of restricted physical ability or simple clumsiness) can still use the game without gestures.

If you were creating a PC game that accepted gestures, I would prefer it gestures be of the form "grab and shake", "throw", or as pie menu shortcuts. Anything more complex means I'm not playing a game, I'm playing a gesture system.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by frob
The PC games I like all have interfaces that I enjoy. A gesture-based interface would harm them, not help them.

It's true that a poorly-designed user interface will give a poorly-designed user experience. In fact, it's true independent of the use of gestures.

Here's a little more info.

First off, the kind of input devices that can be used for gestural input are still not widespread, and they are disparate in terms of their abilities (2- 4- or event 10-touch screens for absolute coordinates, 2- and 4-touch pads for relative input, accelerometers, GPS, yadda yadda) so any gestural UI would need to have some sort of fallback to a less natural interface, if only for the exit button.

Not everyone can use gestural interfaces (just as not everyone can use the poorly-designed multi-mousebutton/chording keyboard interface MS WIndows is designed around, and not everyone can see a display or hear audio). Alternative fallback would also address this.

Those are standard caveats for any UI design, but the disparate hardware abilities harkens back to the days of multiple competing display and audio hardware. Interesting times are coming back.

The exciting stuff we've been discovering, in terms of touch gestures, is there are fundamental gestures (drag and tap with 1 or more points, pinch and rotate with 2 or more points), which are like atoms or letters in a language, and composite gestures built on those like a molecule or the words of a sentence. This is the sort of thing that a game designer could use to make the next generation casual game.

So, does that spark anybody's imagination? Three-finger tap to create a shape, lift one finger and drag while rotating, tap third finger back down to drop the shape into a hole in the game board... I dunno, I'm not a game designer.

What I need to know is: how can I make it easier for game designers to turn their gestural ideas into reality?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This topic is 2635 days old which is more than the 365 day threshold we allow for new replies. Please post a new topic.

If you intended to correct an error in the post then please contact us.

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

Sign in to follow this