Daniel Leithinger, PhD student at MIT MediaLab and his colleagues, are studying interaction with shape displays. The team designed two impressive shape displays made of arrays of ultra-fast motorized pins.
Relief (2009-2010, first row above) is made of 120 motorized pins on top of which can be added a rubber sheet and a projected image. Each pin can be addressed individually and senses user input like pulling and pushing. In 2011, the team extends Relief (later renamed Recompose, second row above) with a depth camera, allowing users to interact with it through mid-air gestures.
inFORM (2013, last row above) is a higher-resolution version made of 900 motorized pins (30 x 30). Leithinger and his colleagues use it to demonstrate a range of features and use case scenarios, including the exploration of physical visualizations.
- Leithinger et al (2009) Relief project page. Scientific publication here (2010).
- Lakatos et al (2011) Recompose project page. Scientific publications here (2011) and here (2011).
- Leithinger et al (2013) InFORM project page. Scientific publications here (2013) and here (2014).