Bits: Designing the Seamless Interface between People, Bits, and
Media Group MIT Media Laboratory
the sea meets the land, life has blossomed into a myriad of unique
forms in the turbulence of water, sand, and wind. At another seashore
between the land of atoms and the sea of bits, we are now facing
the challenge of reconciling our dual citizenships in the physical
and digital worlds. Windows to the digital world are confined
to flat square screens and pixels, or "painted bits." Unfortunately,
one can not feel and confirm the virtual existence of this digital
information through one's body.
Bits, our vision of Human Computer Interaction (HCI), seeks to
realize seamless interfaces between humans, digital information,
and the physical environment by giving physical form to digital
information, making bits directly manipulable and perceptible.
The goal is to blur the boundary between our bodies and cyberspace
and to turn the architectural space into an interface between
the body, bits, and atoms.
this talk, I will present a variety of tangible user interfaces
the Tangible Media Group has designed and presented within the
CHI, SIGGRAPH, UIST, CSCW, IDSA, ICSID, ICC, and Ars Electronica
Ishii's research focuses upon the design of seamless interfaces
between humans, digital information, and the physical environment.
At the MIT Media Lab, he founded and directs the Tangible Media
Group pursuing a new vision of Human Computer Interaction (HCI):
"Tangible Bits." His team seeks to change the "painted bits" of
GUIs to "tangible bits" by giving physical form to digital information.
Ishii and his students have presented their vision of "Tangible
Bits" at a variety of academic, industrial design, and artistic
venues (including ACM SIGCHI, ACM SIGGRAPH, Industrial Design
Society of America, and Ars Electronica), emphasizing that the
development of tangible interfaces requires the rigor of both
scientific and artistic review.
display of many of the group's projects took place at the NTT
InterCommunication Center (ICC) in Tokyo in summer 2000. A new,
two-year-long exhibition "Get in Touch" that features the Tangible
Media group's work opened at Ars Electronica Center (Linz, Austria)
in September 2001. Prior to MIT, from 1988-1994, he led a CSCW
research group at the NTT Human Interface Laboratories, where
his team invented TeamWorkStation and ClearBoard. In 1993 and
1994, he was a visiting assistant professor at the University
of Toronto, Canada. He received B. E. degree in electronic engineering,
M. E. and Ph. D. degrees in computer engineering from Hokkaido
University, Japan, in 1978, 1980 and 1992, respectively.