Flatland User Interfaces

Keith Edwards and Anthony LaMarca, Xerox PARC
kedwards@parc.xerox.com, lamarca@parc.xerox.com

Seminar on People, Computers, and Design
Stanford University April 30, 1999


Flatland is an augmented whiteboard interface designed for informal office work. Our research has investigated approaches to building an augmented whiteboard in the context of continuous, long-term office use. In particular, we have pursued three avenues of research based on input from user studies: techniques for the management of space on the board, the ability to flexibly apply behaviors to support varied application semantics, and mechanisms for managing history on the board. In this talk, we'll discuss the rationale and requirements for Flatland, the architecture of the system, and some of our experiences with it.

Keith Edwards is a member of the research staff in the Computer Science Lab (CSL) at Xerox PARC. His research has focused on the architectural issues around building novel user interfaces, especially collaborative and "richly graphical" systems. He is also interested in the role of film craft and comic art in interface design, and occasionally the odd systems topic such as distributed object systems and programming language design. Keith received his Ph.D. in computer science from Georgia Tech in 1995.

Anthony LaMarca joined PARC after finishing his PhD in computer science from the University of Washington in 1996. Anthony's wide but shallow tour of computer science has taken him through the areas of HCI, graphics, theory, systems and architecture. His current research interests lie in building understandable systems, distributing computation and resolving the tension between these two. Anthony office isn't nearly as cluttered as Keith's.


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