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    Deictic Communication across Distances: Visualising Remote Pointing Gestures on Mobile Devices

    HCI 2018

    Proceedings of the 32nd International BCS Human Computer Interaction Conference (HCI 2018)

    Belfast, UK, 4 - 6 July 2018


    Samuel Navas Medrano, Max Pfeiffer & Christian Kray



    Deictic expressions, such as ‘what is that’ while pointing at an object, play an important role in face-to-face communication, for example when describing locations and orientation or when identifying objects. If two parties are not collocated, e.g. when communicating via mobile phones, such deictic expressions cannot easily be exchanged between the remote parties. In this paper, we propose three ways to visualise deictic pointing gestures to a remote communication partner: 1) fingerprint overlay, 2) natural hand overlay and 3) map-with-viewshed (see Fig. 1). We evaluated these visualisations in a lab-based user study, where participants had to identify various realistic targets on a mobile phone. Overall, participants preferred and were most successful with fingerprint overlay. We also identified properties of the target objects that affected how well a pointing gesture could be transmitted. Our results can inform the design of future interfaces to transmit pointing gestures across distances.


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