2014 – 2018   |   Part of my PhD research

Throughout my PhD research, I have applied my research insights to the design of new (conceptual) interfaces for interactive lighting systems. A selection of these interface designs are presented here.

Lighting interfaces for the home environment

Orbit is a tangible interface for the home environment. In Orbit, people can choose to change the lighting in the whole room, or to apply presets only to separate areas of the room. By disconnecting separate areas from the central display, they are not affected by global changes anymore, to avoid conflicts in situations of shared use. Orbit was designed together with Mendel Broekhuijsen, and forms an example of how interfaces can be designed to present awareness information about the other people that use the system. This aspect has been described in more detail in a paper for DIS2016.

Orbit Interaction with Orbit: select on the central display to apply it to the whole room. Disconnect separate displays for local control.

Bounce is an application that makes it easier to use dynamic lighting effects. In the interface, people can select a background image to control the color preset of the lighting. Individual lamps can be set to bounce over the background, by pulling them back and releasing them. The distance with which they are pulled back determines the speed of the dynamic changes. The color range of the dynamic lighting can be constraint by drawing boundaries around clusters of lamps. Bounce was patented by Philips Lighting.

Bounce In Bounce, lamps can be set to bounce over the background to create dynamic lighting effects.

More conceptual lighting interfaces for the home environment – resulting from a Master course, which I supervised together with Saskia Bakker – can be found in a publication in the International Journal of Design.

Lighting interfaces for open-plan offices

The Canvas interface is a tangible interface for an office lighting system. The four tokens correspond with four areas in the room. The position of the tokens corresponds with a light setting, tokens can be moved vertically to adjust the intensity of the light, and horizontally to adjust the color temperature. Using a laser pen, people can draw boundaries around tokens to indicate to other people that the setting of that token should be left unchanged.

Three lighting interfaces The Canvas, Pointer, and Floorplan interfaces.

In the Floorplan application, people can draw an area on a floor plan of the office and adjust the intensity and color temperature of the lighting in that area. An icon of the current activity can be added to the area, to show one’s motivation for the light setting to other people.

The Pointer is a remote control for the lighting. People can adjust the sliders for the intensity and color temperature, and point to the lamps they want to adjust to apply the new light setting. A small RGB light on the ceiling takes on the color of the remote, to communicate to the other people in the space who created the current light setting.

Video of the interaction with the Floorplan, Pointer, and Canvas interface

The Canvas, Pointer, and Floorplan interface have been designed in collaboration with Thomas van de Werff, to evaluate how the interface design influences shared use of a lighting system. Longitudinal evaluation of the three interfaces has been reported in papers presented at CHI2018 and DIS2017.


Last update: March 2018
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