Large Wall Displays

Body-Centric Interaction Techniques for Very Large Wall Displays [1]


Describes the design, implementation, and evaluation of interaction techniques useful with a very large (16' wide by 9' high) display wall. The specific application is in interactive mapping.


  1. Notes the limitations of the WIMP (windows, icons, menus, pointer) interface technologies when applied to non-traditional computing environments (such as a large display wall).
  2. Expands on two existing design philosophies: reality-based interaction and whole-body interfaces.
  3. Includes a summary of existing interaction techniques for large surfaces, such as white boards and tables. They note the transition in education from personal slates (19th century) to large, shared blackboards, and back to individual laptops. Observations from this paper may provide inspiration to integrate hand-held devices with shared video walls (like in the Lawson Commons).
  4. Whole-body interfaces take advantage of, for example, our ability to ride a bicycle, which is much different from our ability to operate a keyboard and mouse. Some examples including use of ones shadow to create interaction.
  5. The paper gives four design principles to be used when designing interactive systems with large displays. In a nutshell, (1) bind personal and extrapersonal spaces, (2) leverage proprioception by allowing some actions without visual feedback, (3) recognize users within one another's private (personal) space and exploit that knowledge, and (4) allow use of body cues, such as facial expressions and posture.
  6. A virtual shadow for each user is used orient use of on-body tools. They identify three approaches: user following, orthographic, and manual.
  7. Their implementation uses three layers: sensing of physical presence, modeling of the environment, and tailoring the interaction based on that model.


  1. Their interaction system depends on a wall that is within shadow projection range of those interacting with it. How can this work be extended to allow interaction with an elevated display wall (like in the Lawson Commons)?
  2. Evaluation of the effectiveness of the system was based on user feedback rather than controlled experiments. (Still, the qualitative feedback appears useful.)
  3. Future work includes a more detailed modeling of the individuals, including hand and finger positions.
1. Garth Shoemaker, Takayuki Tsukitani, Yoshifumi Kitamura, Kellogg S. Booth, Body-Centric Interaction Techniques for Very Large Wall Displays.