Visual Separation in Mobile Multi-Display Environments

Jessica Cauchard, Markus Löchtefeld, Pourang Irani, Johannes Schöning, Mike Fraser, Antonio Krüger, Sriram Subramanian

In: UIST '11: Proceedings of the 24th Annual ACM Symposium on User Interface Software and Technology Proceedings. ACM Symposium on User Interface Software and Technology (UIST-11) October 16-19 Santa Barbara CA United States ACM 10/2011.


Projector phones, handheld game consoles and many other mobile devices increasingly include more than one display, and therefore present a new range of mobile Multi-Display Environments (MDEs) to users. Existing studies illustrate the effects of visual separation between displays in MDEs and suggest interaction techniques that mitigate these effects. Currently, mobile devices with heterogeneous displays such as projector phones are often designed without reference to visual separation issues; therefore it is critical to establish whether concerns and opportunities raised in the existing MDE literature apply to the emerging category of Mobile MDEs (MMDEs). This paper investigates the effects of visual separation in the context of MMDEs and contrasts these with fixed MDE results, and explores design factors for Mobile MDEs. Our study uses a novel eye-tracking methodology for measuring switches in visual context between displays and identifies that MMDEs offer increased design flexibility over traditional MDEs in terms of visual separation. We suggest that designers consider the alignment and reconfiguration of displays to support rapid interoperation.


Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Künstliche Intelligenz
German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence