9 comments on “OCGM is being presented at CHI 2010 and a prime example of OCGM

  1. Hi Ron,

    Glad you’re blogging again!

    Good example, although I don’t think the chainsaw is a perfect example of a gesture. I can see that adding the separate manipulations of the gas and the starter and so on lead to a larger destructive result, but I think the important part about gestures is that they communicate a meaning.

    From our paper:
    “Gestures are metaphors for discrete, indirect, intelligent interaction, and manipulations are metaphors for continuous, direct, environmental interaction.” I elaborate in my book that manipulations are based upon human-environmental interaction while gestures are based upon human-human communication, both verbal and non-verbal. This is based upon definitions from your original blog post.

    If you want to accomplish something, you can do it yourself manually through a series of manipulations or you could communicate your desire to another person or entity who will do it for you. The gesture is a shortcut and saves you from doing manipulations.

    For example, to delete a file, you could manipulate it into the trashcan, which is easily reversible, or you could perform a gesture on the file in place to cause the file to go to the trashcan itself.

    With the sticks on a table example, I think an easier to understand application of gestures and manipulations would be this:

    Manipulation: move each stick one by one from the table to a fire

    Gesture: use a hand motion to communicate to someone or something else (a friend, a robot, or some motion-sensing mechanism built into the table) that you want it to take the sticks and put them in a fire.

    In both cases the sticks end up in a fire and destroyed. With the manipulations you use human-environmental interaction to perform the actions manually yourself, and you can stop and reverse the action easily (at least until the stick is consumed by the fire.) With the gestures you use human-human communication to send a message to another intelligent being that interprets your message and takes action.

    • I think you are confusing the intuitiveness, meaning, communication, and the understanding of the recipient, with the actual gesture, which is purely a learned intent, and action.

      Mainly just approaching it from a different point of view. Where your guys stands in the back and communicates ‘take it to the fire’, my guy actually performs multiple manipulations to get the same result.

      The important difference between our examples are the use of multiple manipulations to achieve results. This demonstrates the basis of how harmless interactions can invoke, even by accident, a harmful result.

      The other interesting thing is that in my example, it can always be “cancelled.” You can simply stop doing the gesture and it will stop. Such as the example of drawing your name on a surface to put your electronic signature. Its a complex series of manipulations, but if you stop before its complete, it will cancel.

      On the same token, I’m not saying you are wrong. I must say that I am saddened that you would actually use a “wastebasket” in your example. I need to go hug a kitten.

      PS: Using your example, what would you consider CTRL+C and CTRL+V? Manipulation or Gesture?

  2. Well we are using examples from different points of view, but I just wanted to make sure there was a clear example of a simple gesture as well as the more involved example you gave.

    I think the important part for people to understand, referring back to your first post on the definitions http://blog.rongeorge.com/design/interaction-design/terminology-the-difference-between-a-gesture-and-a-manipulation/ is for something to be gesture it must communicate or attempt to express some meaning.

    Part of this is a “if a tree falls in a forest” question.

    I think we would agree that if you ask me where the restroom is and I point towards it, that the action of pointing is a gesture. Now if I point towards the restroom but you happened to look away and not see it, is it still a gesture?

    I’d say yes, since my intent was to communicate a meaning. Even if I were alone and I pointed at something while talking to myself or thinking, it would still be a gesture because there is some meaning associated with it. (Counting on my fingers to myself would be a gesture for the same reason.)

    On the other hand, if I perform the same action without any intent to associate meaning, say while stretching, that would not be a gesture.

    When you say your gesture example can be canceled, that’s not completely accurate terminology. The gesture isn’t interpreted until it is complete, so really it’s just not completing the gesture. Once you complete the gesture (saw the table in half?) you cannot cancel it. Same in my example. If I only perform half the motion that indicates “put the sticks in a fire”, the gesture isn’t completed and nothing happens. Your example just has a really long gesture made up of a sequence of manipulations (which are body motions), where my example gesture is just a single body motion.

    Eh, there’s nothing wrong with the trashcan metaphor. Sure it might be a little stale, but it is based upon a real-world behavior and skill that we know and it is easily recognizable.

    CTRL-C and CTRL-V are gestures, of course. If you want the computer to copy or paste the selected text, you can move the mouse to a menu or toolbar and click a button (manipulation), or use CTRL-C or CTRL-V to communicate your intent (gesture).

    Those are my thoughts anyway!

    • Actually, I reread my reply and it didn’t make sense. Here is what I should have said.

      Yes, your example is also correct but I used my example specifically to show the parallels between objects inside containers and manipulations inside gestures.

      Now.. GOOD DAY SIR! haha.

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  5. Actually, I reread my reply and it didn’t make sense. Here is what I should have said. Yes, your example is also correct but I used my example specifically to show the parallels between objects inside containers and manipulations inside gestures. Now.. GOOD DAY SIR! haha.

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