Day 3 has been a bit boring compared to the first days. I followed a session on multi and large screen techniques. Nothing was really neat, but a technique called ninja cursors was kind of inspiring to me as a game designer. It was basically a fancy name for using multiple cursors per mouse – all moving synchronously. The average mouse movement distance was reduced, but there were some problems of resolving ambiguity when two or more cursors had a target. In a game though, that might just provide a fun puzzle element.
Another session presented further fancy cursor techniques. The most promising seemed to be pie cursors, which utilized mouse movement direction for making selections on a pie shaped cursor – quite a clever way to remove regular selection menus and tool palettes. Autodesk is currently implementing it in some of their applications, so it should work for huge command sets.
I also joined a special interest group on the field of user experience (UX), discussing how a shared definition is missing. Unsurprisingly, no shared definition was reached. The preliminary result of a survey was promising though, and might provide some consensus once it is finished. The practitionersâ€™ view on UX differed wildly from the researchersâ€™ view – something which is also apparent at the conference exhibition, where UX looks like a big business dealing with very different things. Somehow the practitioners get user-centered design mixed up with user experience. At least that is my impression.