March 20, 2017

Interface development through gaming techniques

Feedback can help motivate people, and stimulate them to learn more and in less time. By finding a way to use gaming techniques to create humanlike animations in products and services, I have reached my goal of finding an effective way to provide this feedback.

From texting on a smartphone to operating high-tech production facilities, users interact daily with the various devices around them. Devices are presenting more information than ever before, information that virtually begs for user action. And this trend has scientific purpose at its core. It's been proven that when you receive direct feedback on your actions, your understanding and learning ability increases. At a time when consumers are bombarded with feedback requests, designers see an opportunity to help by making the feedback process simple, seamless and intuitive.

A decent feedback design can play an important role in encouraging participation. An animation that exhibits human characteristics can awaken an emotional connection from the end user; effective but also very labour intensive. The character must be animated manually, to allow for the natural movement required to evoke an emotional response. My objective was to find an effective way to give feedback to the end user.

Han Toebast, Design Strategist:
β€œIn a world of ever-increasing digitisation, it's even more important to design interactions that feel natural and that users will accept more easily. Something worth considering when you want to communicate interactively with your end users through your product or interface. VanBerlo can offer intelligent solutions that are not merely efficient to produce, but also highly effective."

By using open source gaming hardware and software, I managed to turn human movements into real-time animations that can be seamlessly displayed on product interfaces. For example, a fitness app with a human character that starts to dance as soon as you hit your fitness goal for that day. No more wooden "Robot" motions, say hello to animations with more natural, fluid movements! Consequently, the end user is better able to identify with the supplied feedback. Being able to identify with the supplied feedback helps to greater promote a sense of reward in the user, and therefore promote a lasting motivational response.

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