Benefits Of Using Tangible Computer Science Essay

For rather some clip, research workers have provided information to show that a standout amongst the best ways of larning for childs is by doing the action merriment and appealing to the kid in such a manner that there would be a insistent desire in that kid over clip. This might progress some of cognition degrees in the country the stated merriment action covers. Sony summaries this in their web site (, 2012 ) that “ By the twelvemonth 2000, one in four American places was estimated to hold at least one Sony PlayStation game ” .

This study examines the of import and the benefits of utilizing Tangible user interface ( TUI ) to develop a gambling environment for kids. Additionally, besides examines the importance and benefit of utilizing TUI.

Keywords – Collaborative, Multiplayer, Intuitive, Fun, Motivates, Tangible User Interface.

Table of Contentss


Human Computer Interaction, as we know has advanced tremendously over the old ages since the visual aspect of the first modem twenty-four hours machines. Every twenty-four hours, new engineerings on how to pull strings one ‘s computing machine system are released. CLI ( Command Line Interface ) evolved to GUI ( Graphical User Interface ) , where the user really sees things he wants to pull strings. And now we have the more recent engineering of them, the TUI ( Tangible User Interface ) .

In 1993, a particular issue of the communications of the ACM titled “ Back to the Real World ” , argued that both desktop computing machine and practical world estrange worlds from their “ natural environment ” . The issue farther suggested that instead than coercing users to come in a practical universe, one should augment and enrich the existent universe with digital functionality. This attack was motivated by the desire to retain the profusion and situatedness of physical interactions. Tangible interface emerged as portion of this tendency.

TUI ( Tangible User Interface ) is a user interface in which a individual interacts with digital information through the physical environment. The initial name was Graspable User Interface. TUI was created to heighten worlds ‘ ability to hold on and pull strings objects in the physical universe to bring forth a digital feedback as a response. However, By giving touchable ( physical ) representation to digital information, touchable user interface makes information straight apprehensible and tractable through tactile feedback. ( Hiroshi Ishii, 2008 ) .

Recent academic research reveals that kids want to utilize engineerings which support their wonders, their love or repeat and their demand for control harmonizing to Druin ( 1999 ) . It is believed that new signifier of synergistic devices can increase kids ‘s engagement and willingness to interact with computing machine systems. In an effort to farther do acquisition and computing machine use experience merriment and prosecuting for kids, A game paradigm called “ FLAC ISLAND ” was developed with the purpose of doing game experience merriment and collaborative for kids.

This study sets out to analyze the importance of developing a game with TUI for kids, it will further explicate how a game paradigm called Flac with TUI, and besides explain the principle of the design. In more inside informations, it will carefully explicate the construct of the paradigm and rating methods undertaken to accomplish serviceability in the design amongst participants. Additionally, this study will farther explicate why and how this paradigm and rating methods were chosen.


The range of the work given as a class of this undertaking, was to plan a game paradigm, and measure a game for kids. Amongst other things, four chief demands were listed. These demands were to:

Have a touchable user interface ( with interaction through reacTIVision-tagged objects )

Be a game – in the sense of holding a intent and some signifier of challenge ( and perchance competitory component )

Be merriment and prosecuting – users should desire to utilize it and bask making so

Have and educational dimension – users should be able to larn something from the experience


Flac Island is a board based game with regulations and challenges aimed at developing kids ‘s head and mental capablenesss. The game is targeted for kids at the age of 12 old ages old as legion research reveals that kids at this age learn by grouping colorss and utilizing images and text side by side ( Recognition instead than remember ) . Flac Island is besides aimed at fiting kids at this age with the ability to larn how to gain money by be aftering and doing determinations, and besides taking hazard in other to do more money ( Strategy ) .

The end of the game is to find the participant with highest money nest eggs at the terminal of the drama, before the start of the game, every participant is assigned a certain sum of money. A participant who gets bankrupt foremost during the game drama is kicked out of the game. Every participant is given the same sum of money at the beginning of the game.


Invention harmonizing to Encarta Dictionaries, is the procedure of contriving or presenting something new, a new Idea or methods. Flac Island is rather advanced in the sense that, recently, board games like serpent and ladders, monopoly, Oligy etc. were invented on an parallel board based platform. To accomplish advanced accomplishments, they were demands to digitize our game thought as it is based on monopoly construct, taking into consideration the rules of design and restraint in order to guarantee effectual serviceability and user experience.


What is a merriment Game?

In an effort to reply this inquiry, it is of import to observe that different game user have their ain apprehension of merriment and characteristics of what make them bask the games they play. However, Katie salen and Eric Zimmerman describe a fun game to be “ One which has more participant actively take parting and interacting with the system at the same time in other to see exhilaration ” . ( Katie Salen, Eric Zimmerman, 2004 ) .

Taking into consideration what makes a game merriment from Katie and Eric, Flac Island was designed to be played by 2 to 4 participants at the same time, the game was besides designed for multi-user interactivity which means participants get to interact with the game collaboratively throughout the period of drama. Previous research reveals that more user engagement in a game increases fun battle. Fun relates more than merely the user interface or how user interact with the game, it besides relates straight to game drama ( Malone, 1980, p. 34 ) . It is non surprising that Mayers ( 1990 ) , in his survey of Game Player Aesthetics, found “ Challenge ” to be, “ the most preferable feature of a favorite game ” ( p. 383 ) .

Challenging activities such as mystifier, quiz, optional purchase of belongingss, regulations and struggle declaration between participants were carefully incorporated in the paradigm. Artificial struggles like participants set downing on a topographic point owned by another participant which as stated by the game regulations will demand the said participant to pay the proprietor of the belongings a certain sum of money which in bend will be debited from his history was besides integrated into the paradigm. Giving kids at this age the power and ability to decide struggle within themselves.

Finally, Children get involved by fliping the die which give them the take parting power to fantasy and experience like they are in world basking them.


Children at the age of 12 knows how to play just utilizing beforehand societal accomplishments and will be able to pull off Books, Card and board games, Jigsaw puzzles etc. ( ) .

Flac Island was designed to develop kids ‘s mental capablenesss by giving them the chance to take a strategic determination which in bend will take to their success or failure in the game drama ( larning about winning and losing ) . Activities like quizzes were besides added to the paradigm to farther enhance kid ‘s learning manner.

Additionally, Puzzle was besides included in the paradigm to assist kids larn how to concentrate and concentrate. Puzzle besides helps the kids in developing their mathematical consciousness and job resolution accomplishments. Most significantly, heighten a kid knowledge ( brooding knowledge ) which involve thought, decision-making etc. this sort of knowledge is what leads to new thoughts and creativeness in kids.

Finally, arithmetic and dialogue were considered during the development of the paradigm as kids at this targeted age will acquire the chance to foster heighten their mathematical cognition as the interaction with the game and besides negociate within participants which help them in jointing.


A major advantage of the TUI harmonizing to Ishii ( 2008 ) , is that the touchable representation aid to cover the spread between the digital and physical universes, in other words, it gives a direct signifier of control mechanisms for digital information. TUI helps in constructing kids ‘s knowledge as they attempt to understand the map of the touchable object in the environment with mere intuitive design.

Flac Island was designed to work with touchable objects. Interaction in the gambling environment is done through the usage of Fudical ID ‘s ( Markers ) which is attached to a touchable object. Each physical object represents a digital information and as such, the Objects are designed to picture what it represent in the digital universe. As portion of the game construct, The dies used in the game is made of touchable object with markers on all sides of the dies, one time the dies are tossed, the figure the participants get is displayed on the screen as digital feedback hereby triping farther actions in the gambling environment. This information is processed through package – reacTIVision which recognize these markers and assign digital values to them.

Another benefit of TUI is its support to multiuser interaction paradigm which allows people to join forces, communicate, and connect in a societal manner. This benefit was besides taken into consideration during the design of the game paradigm. Flac Island is a game that can be played by 2 to 4 participants collaboratively hereby making agencies for societal acquisition among kids.

With TUIs, users do n’t hold to look at the interface, as they do with a GUI, to cognize what they are making, which serve as an advantage for many applications. The money and the participant item in the game construct were touchable as the participant has to prosecute in traveling their pieces around the board. TUI let user affect digital information by pull stringsing objects. These objects are computationally coupled. TUI besides let users leverage their natural ability to pull strings familiar physical objects to work with assorted systems and informations. This makes the activities more intuitive.

Manipulating physical objects is a cardinal constituent of immature kids ‘s universe and their acquisition. The educational power of digital engineering for kids has typically been limited by the fact that users explore and pull strings abstract two dimensional screen-based representations, and non existent physical objects. Young Children ca n’t read text-based menu choice or type in their response on a keyboard. Taking advantage of TUI ability to interact with digital information through physical objects, characteristics like bill of fare choice were made possible by the usage of physical objects which was intuitively designed to typify what it represent in the digital universe ( game environment ) . This nevertheless, made use easy or kids as they could easy cognize what each physical object would make in the gambling environment at first sight.


Crisp et Al. in their book Interaction Design listed four indispensable “ basic activities ” involved in the procedure of interaction design. These activities are:

Identify demands and set up demands

Develop alternate designs that meet those demands

Build synergistic version of the designs so that they can be communicated and assessed

Measure what is being built throughout the procedure

These activities are adopted throughtout the undertaking, ad the tabular array bellows explains how it was used.


Procedure ( Es )


A. Identify demands and set up demands

– Received coursework literature

– Identified the cardinal deliverables

– Researched via the cyberspace on game constructs

– Decided on the targeted users

The undertaking deliverables were identified early therefore assisting in puting focal point on what to research and develop

B. Develop alternate designs for ( A )

– Drew theoretical accounts utilizing Unified Modelling Language tools like flow charts, run charts.

– Drafted “ what if ” scenarios demoing possible design results

Design interface was created at the terminal of this stage, other design restraint like the coloring material strategy, images, metaphors, etc.. were besides chosen.

C. Build synergistic versions based on ( B )

– Coded the paradigm

A working paradigm was produced at this stage.

D. Evaluate ( C )

– Heuristics

– Cognitive walk-through

– Questionnaires

Expert judgement was used as feedback to farther heighten the development of the paradigm.


Some design principle were considered during the design of the paradigm due to cognitive restriction in kids. Below are the list of possible principle

Sound: Voice over and sound cartridge holders were integrated in the gambling environment to assist the kids pick up on what there are suppose to make, as the voice prompt service as direction intimation during the game drama.

Animation: Animated images attracts kids ‘s attending and was used to capture their attending to of import notice during the game drama.

Difficulty degree: In other to do the game drama disputing and prosecuting, different degree of trouble were integrated into the game




Flac Island was developed on the construct of monopoly which entails participants traveling round the board in other get belongingss and besides do more money. The undermentioned object is made touchable in the gambling environment:

The die to be tossed.

Object for bill of fare use

The money for participants

Player Token for motion

Puzzle pieces for work outing challenges

Alphabet letters A- D for replying quiz inquiry

The game starts with users choosing the figure of participants with a dynamic marker ( Tangible object ) . Turning the marker clockwise increases the Numberss of participants.

After the Numberss of participant are selected, users are required to come in their participant name, this name is used to place each participant throughout the game session. Before the start of the game, every participant must hold a participant batch which serves as designation.

The game is played in a clockwise mode which means all participants has to travel in one way. To acquire a participant bend, each participant get downing from the first participant has to demo his batch. This construct allows the participants to hold the same feel as in existent life since Identification cards are used to place worlds in the existent universe. After demoing a batch, A green visible radiation is displayed under the participant indicates the drama is ready to flip his or her die. Once the die is tossed, the participant gets a digital feedback on the figure of dies tossed and location where he or she should set down.

Most significantly, if a participant lands on a topographic point owned by another participant, he/she is obligated to pay the proprietor of the belongings a stipulated sum of money and it is automatically deducted from his history. The board has 38 different musca volitanss filledd with activities and challenges to maintain the participants prosecuting.

The participant with the highest money at the terminal of the game wins the game and in wages, goes place with a trophy.


Assorted functionality were incorportated into the gambling environment, below are the list of all the functionalities.

Sound: This functionality was used to play sound in the game environment

Timer map: Was used to maintain clip of the game drama

Dynamic markers: Turning specific object clockwise or anti-clockwise in the game environment changes the digital value of the object. For illustration, to increase Numberss of participant in the game, by turning Thursday object for participant choice clockwise increase the Numberss, while anti-clockwise lessenings.

Skidder: In an effort to convey fiction into world, An iphone unlock system was implemented to give the kids a feel of normal life activity in the game evnvironment. To get down the game, kids would hold to skid the pointer on game to unlock and lade the game.

Score board: Dynamic score board was used throughout the game drama, participants score were updated automatically as the support advancing and winning in the game. This variable was decleard with priviledge so it can be accessed any where at different degree of the game.

Quize: As portion of the acquisition procedure, inquiries and anwers was besides incorporated, these inquiries were dynamically and indiscriminately fetched from the portable database libraries ( Mysqlite ) which made is possible for participants non to acquire the same inquiries as the land on the guize topographic point.

Puzzle: Each piece of the mystifier solved added some point to the participant

Charity [ contribution ] : Children were taught how to give by puting a money marker on a topographic point called community bank to donate for charity ; dynamic marker was used in this subdivision to accomplish this functionality, which means for participants to increase the sum of money to be donated, they have to turn the marker clockwise. Once the sum is chosen, a countdown timer start numbering from 4 – 0 so automatically debit the participants account.


Libraries USED




Is a library used to implememt natural philosophies. It was used in the loading page of the game to teach the kids on what to make in other to get down the game.


Use to project the game in a fullscreen manner. It allows the game to lade on any device with a full screen declaration.


Is a library used in playing sounds, it was used in playing sound direction in the gambling environment.


Is a portable database system used in hive awaying quize inquiries and replies. It allows inquiries to be fetch from the database indiscriminately.


Was used to archieve life in the gambling environment. Allows easy use of Gifs format images.


Crisp et al defined Evaluation as the procedure of consistently roll uping informations that informs us about what it is like for a peculiar user or group of users to utilize a merchandise for a peculiar undertaking in a certain type of environment.

The best thought rating method used for measuring the serviceability of the paradigm was Heuristic Evaluation and Cognitive Walk-through. These was chosen because these methods does non necessitate users nowadayss during the rating. User rating normally takes excessively long and frequently require a batch of expensese.

The paradigm was evaluated by three ( 3 ) expert with progress cognition of both interaction design and Heutistic rules ; Each of them passing one to two hours go throughing through the interface while bring forthing list of heuristics misdemeanor in the paradigm. Nielson ‘s 1994 “ Ten Usability Heuristic ” rules were used to measure the paradigm which are:

Visibility of the system: Typically this applies to tonss and degree of the game to users.

Ben Shneiderman believes that tonss do non merely inform the participants where they stand, it is a signifier of positive feedback that encourages command of the game ( Shneiderman, 1992 ) .

Match between the system and the existent universe: Metaphors used in the design were carefully chosen to guarantee it means the same thing users uses in the existent universe e.g the drama button icon.

User control and freedom: Harmonizing to Norman, If a user feels restricted, they will most likely become fraustrated, and it could do disinterest in the game ( Norman, 1990 ) . Full pilotage and control of game drama was integrated into the paradigm e.g users could quite or stop the game at their ain clip, they can besides hesitate the clip during the game drama.

Consistency and criterion: The game user interface was consistent throught out the design.

Recognition instead than remember: The touchable objects ( markers ) were intuitively designed, kids could easy cognize what is does in the gambling environment by looking at the object. Users could pull strings the game without much demand for game manuals and direction page.

Flexibility and efficiency of usage

Aesthetic and minimalist design

Aid users recognize, diagnose, and retrieve from mistakes

Aid and certification

After transporting out these rating, feedbacks were documented and instantly applied to the paradigm.