Fighting for control: children's embodied interactions when using physical and digital representations

Paul Marshall, R Fleck, A Harris, J Rick, Eva Hornecker, Yvonne Rogers, N Yuill, NS Dalton
in CHI '09 Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, Conference paper (text)


Tabletop and tangible interfaces are often described in terms of their support for shared access to digital resources. However, it is not always the case that collaborators want to share and help one another. In this paper we detail a video-analysis of a series of prototyping sessions with children who used both cardboard objects and an interactive tabletop surface. We show how the material qualities of the digital interface and physical objects affect the kinds of bodily strategies adopted by children to stop others from accessing them. We discuss how children fight for and maintain control of physical versus digital objects in terms of embodied interaction and what this means when designing collaborative applications for shareable interfaces.