Flo)(ps : Between Habitual and Explorative Gestures


Session Title:

  • Exploring and Experimenting with Sound

Presentation Title:

  • Flo)(ps : Between Habitual and Explorative Gestures




  • Design affordances of an everyday object guide us towards habitual behaviors. Physical actions that are not immediately associated with established body techniques are often neglected by the user. Can sound activate those interactions that remain latent in the physicality of an interface? How can it encourage underused, unusual bodily movements?

    In this paper I describe the Flo)(ps project, a series of interactive glasses which were designed to study the use of habitual and explorative sonic gestures. I present the design, qualitative evaluation study and the insights into the effect of the habitual and unusual sonic gestures on individual and social interaction. These have shown that explorative play can be encouraged through sonic interaction, but that the complexity of real-time composition affects the users emotions and behavior. Finally, I identify future steps in developing and studying different types gestural interaction with everyday sounding artifacts.

    The interface was used in psychological experiments exploring emotion, sound and gesture presented in the Sound and Music Computing Conference.

    The project was supported by the European Commission project CLOSED FP6- NEST-PATH no. 29085. and the Hexagram research Interstices Lab, Montreal.


    1. Concept, development (electronics, product design, fabrication) and direction: Karmen Franinovic
    2. Software development: Yon Visell
    3. Thanks to Martin Peach for electronics advice and Fabienne Meyer and Thomas Tobler for fabrication support.

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