IAT 884 Tangible Computing

This course is the Spring 2022 ver­sion of IAT 884, taught by Dr. Bernhard Riecke at Simon Fraser University.


The course covers the his­tor­i­cal and cur­rent research agenda for a broadly defined class of com­pu­ta­tional sys­tems, known as Tangible Computing or TEI (Tangible, Embodied and Embedded Interaction), that include user inter­faces, inter­ac­tion approaches and com­pu­ta­tional sys­tems that empha­size the tan­gi­bil­ity and mate­ri­al­ity of the inter­face, phys­i­cal embod­i­ment of data, hands-on and/or whole body inter­ac­tion, and the embed­ding of com­pu­ta­tion in real spaces, objects and con­texts. Tangible com­put­ing spans a vari­ety of dis­ci­plines includ­ing human-computer inter­ac­tion and inter­ac­tion design, and uti­lizes inter­ac­tive tech­nolo­gies includ­ing sens­ing sys­tems, actu­a­tors, micro­con­trollers and/or hybrid physical-digital and/or mul­ti­modal displays.

The course is designed as a con­tent area course for stu­dents inter­ested in the design, pro­to­typ­ing and eval­u­a­tion of tan­gi­ble com­put­ing sys­tems. It will not cover mobile devices or large dis­play environments.

The course has two main aims:

  1. To famil­iar­ize stu­dents with and help them crit­i­cally ana­lyze the his­tory, foun­da­tions, agen­das, issues, research meth­ods and cur­rent and crit­i­cal research projects and papers in the broadly defined area of tan­gi­ble, embod­ied and embed­ded computing.
  2. To pro­vide the oppor­tu­nity to develop hands-on tech­ni­cal skills in pro­to­typ­ing simple sensor, actu­ated or camera vision based tan­gi­ble com­put­ing sys­tems in order to explore simple, top­i­cal research questions.

see here and here for more details about the course in general.

Student Projects

Below are videos of the amaz­ing projects the stu­dents cre­ated this semester:

Annemik Veldhuis's project

Project video:

Project pre­sen­ta­tion:


Jordan Eshpeter's project

project video:

YouTube Preview Image

project pre­sen­ta­tion:


Alfredo Sherman's project

Project video:

Project pre­sen­ta­tion:


Samann Pinder

Project video: