Haptic Experience and the Design of Drawing Interfaces
Haptic feedback has the potential to enhance users' sense of being engaged and creative in their artwork. Current work on providing haptic feedback in computer-based drawing applications has focused mainly on the realism of the haptic sensation rather than the users' experience of that sensation in the context of their creative work. We present a study that focuses on user experience of three haptic drawing interfaces. These interfaces were based on two different haptic metaphors, one of which mimicked familiar drawing tools (such as pen, pencil or crayon on smooth or rough paper) and the other of which drew on abstract descriptors of haptic experience (roughness, stickiness, scratchiness and smoothness). It was found that users valued having control over the haptic sensation; that each metaphor was preferred by approximately half of the participants; and that the real world metaphor interface was considered more helpful than the abstract one, whereas the abstract interface was considered to better support creativity. This suggests that future interfaces for artistic work should have user-modifiable interaction styles for controlling the haptic sensation.